Eclipse is free universal IDE platform. It is written in Java and available on Windows, Linux, MacOSX, Solaris, and other Java enabled platforms. It comes with a default support for Java, but plugins for other languages such as C, C++, Pascal, C# etc. can be downloaded from here.“This is fifth and final milestone build of the Eclipse 2.1 development cycle. All features and code for the 2.1 release is now in place (documentation is lagging). During February and March, the focus of the 2.1 development effort will be on finding and fixing bugs in the code base. Note that milestone build 5 (M5) is also known as release candidate 0 (RC0).”
New and noteworthy changes in this build are listed here.
There are a lot of very high quality free development tools available for java. From eclipse to netbeans , etc. Ms might offer pretty good deals to students, but they can’t beat free !
Don’t the eclipse people also offer somekind of java toolkit based on native widgets ? Can someone tell me if they’re any good.
There are three GUI frameworks for Java: AWT and Swing from Sun, and SWT from Eclipse group.
SWT uses native gadgets. Many people think that it is faster than Swing, and I can say, yes, it is true.
Eclipse is a universal IDE platform, onto which, it is possible to develop IDEs and plugins. It is written with Java, and by default, it comes with an environment via which Java projects can be developed, but, it is possible to use plugins to develop C++, C, Pascal, C# programs.
Actually, it is the best IDE I’ve ever used, much better than many commercial IDEs, and it is free as in beer. : ) Try it. It is really great.
By the way, the link for downloading it is wrong, that link leads to eclipse plugins page. It is my mistake, sorry Eugenia. It should be http://www.eclipse.org
I went to the plugin site, and I saw plugins for pascal, eiffel, ruby but I didn’t see any plugins for c,c++. Does anyone know where they are and what they’re called?
plugin-homepage report-update comments (5)
The CDT project provides a set of plugins that implement a C/C++ IDE. It adds a C/C++ Perspective to the Eclipse Workbench that supports C/C++ development with a number of views, wizards, a powerful editor, and a debugger. The CDT is designed to provide an extensible architecture, that will provide support for integration of tools provided by Independent Software Vendors.
added: Oct 16, 2002
modified: Nov 1, 2002
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It has nearly 250 plugins already:
Are you an Eclipse developer? All I ever see is you whining in the .NET stories and promoting Eclipse.
Are you Billy the McCarty?
Does anyone have screenshots for Eclipse? I’d like to see what it looks like, but don’t want to install it just yet
perhaps someone could actually say what they like about netbeans or eclipse… its much more useful than saying “its better”…
i personally have been using netbeans quite happily (except slow speed problem)… i did download eclipse with native toolkit weeks ago but it wouldn’t run on my mandrake box.
Just yesterday I installed Eclipse M5 from source.
I had to install Ant to build Eclipse. I’m not interested
as much in the IDE as I am in SWT using GTK2.
First of all, let me say that I’ve never tried Netbeans. But I’m an operator at #java on Undernet and we get a lot of questions about IDEs and discuss them nearly every day. Netbeans are never mention in those discussions. Guess there’s a reason
…is, that it is a stange mix of Java and native components. Therefore it is not very easy to port Eclipse to different platforms. In opposite to NetBeans (which is 100% Java), Eclipse need an individual distro for everey supported platform. I don’t really know why the do such a stupid thing.
At work we use “WebSphere Studio Application Developer” (short WSAD) from IBM for one year now. We do Java/JSP/HTML/EJB development with it. Eclipse is the foundation of WSAD, and, I have to say, it is the biggest and slowest IDE I have ever used. Don’t try to run it without a min. 1GHz CPU and below 1GB of RAM if you want to do resious EJB development with is.
If you compare Eclipse (which hasn’t all the plugins IBM delivers with WSAD) to Netbeans, I have to say, Netbeans is far far better than Eclipse. The NetBeans IDE is nuch more faster in just everything. Startup, editing, browsing the source – just everything.
But the strangest thing is still the mix of java and native source components in excipse, which makes it pretty hard to port Eclipse.
I talked once to an IBM guy (IBM is a big player in the Eclipse project) why they did such strange things and the answer was: “Because of the speed!”. LOL – NetBeans – which is developed in 100% Java – is much faster than the dogslow Eclipse IDE.
I personally don’t like Eclipse – hard enough I have to use it at work 8 hours per day.
P.S. The Eclipse Website says not a single word about an Eclipse version for Mac OS X.
I am trying and cannot figure it out……arg why don’t they have compiler setting plug ins!!!
I’ve used pretty much every java ide – and i think eclipse is the best one – including the ones you pay for. I’ve been developing for a few years and have all of my classes seperated into projects in eclipse. The refactoring capabilities just blow me away – and this is why i like it so much. My software seems to evolve as I develop it – i see new patterns as I go along and refactor to take advantage of them. I have several common modules that I use for multiple projects. occasionally i have to expand them with new capabilities that may break exisiting code. Making the change in one class instantly marks the conflicts this causes in every line in every dependent class in every project – possibly in every class that you’ve ever written – several thousand classes in mycase! Other ides do this too, but eclipse does it most elegantly. The interface is pretty zippy thanks to swt. Has good ant integration as well.
If you develop java applictions – give it a try. Don’t have a screenshot, but if you go to ibm’s site and have a look at webstudio (I think) – they use the eclips base as well (they donated the codebase).
The spindle plugin for tapestry is also somewhat helpful.
The only thing missing is a gui designer – but since i do mostly server work – that’s not a big deal for me. I revert to netbeans for that – they work pretty well in tandem (as long as you’ve got lots of ram!)…
To the guy that said NetBeans is faster (!?) than Eclipse, all I can think of is that IBM might ship an earlier version of Eclipse with that product. I tried NetBeans for an hour or so and it was mad slow. Then I came across Eclipse, and everything was much more responsive, plus I like the native feel due to SWT. Of course neither of them are as responsive and light on resources as a pure native IDE, such as Visual Studio 6’s IDE, Borland Delphi’s IDE, or something like Visual SlickEdit. But Visual Studio .NET’s IDE is huge on resources, especially considering that it’s a “native” app (I’m not sure if .NET compiled apps are considered native). A sign of things to come…?
Anyway, if you still don’t find Eclipse responsive enough, there are many other IDEs you can try. I actually spent two weeks during November of last year evaluating a whole bunch of IDEs. Most of these are geared towards Java:
– JDebugTool (pure Java, free, great if you just need a debugging tool)
– JSwat (similar to JDebugTool)
– jEdit (pure Java, free, lots of plugins)
– IntelliJ IDEA (pure Java [I think], not free)
– JCreator (native Win32, free and pro versions)
– Omnicore CodeGuide 5.0 (pure Java [I think], couldn’t get e-mail reply from company, supports incremental compilation, not free)
– jGRASP (pure Java, code browser, *not* an editor)
– JPad/SitePad Pro (native Win32, not free)
– DrJava (pure Java, rare file “corruption” issue, Dynamic Java support, lightweight)
– SciTE (native Win32 and Linux, lightweight, could use some polish)
– RealJ (native Win32, lightweight, doesn’t play well with UNIX text files)
– BlueJ (pure Java, supposed to be a teaching tool, I just don’t get it)
– Gel/GExperts (native Win32, not yet finished)
– Emacs (native on many platforms, huge learning curve)
– Zeus (native Win32, not free)
– ED (native Win32, not free)
I eventually ended up using a combination of Emacs, JDebugTool, DrJava, and Eclipse. On Windows, I still use Eclipse a lot, but under Linux, I have found Eclipse to be not so stable. Emacs is nice because it’s available on a lot of platforms, but coming from a Windows world, I couldn’t stand the default shortcut keys, so I had to redefine a lot of the commands. DrJava has a nifty Dynamic Java panel; think of the LISP read-eval-print loop, but for Java. I use DrJava primarily for this feature. JDebugTool, like Eclipse, interfaces with the Java debugger via the JPDA, which makes the debugger feel like it’s “integrated” with the IDE. Native apps, such as Zeus and JPad/SitePad Pro, are at a distinct disadvantage in the debugging arena because (to the best of my knowledge) native apps can at best provide a shell on top of jdb.exe.
What else. jGRASP was pretty cool. I wanted to use it, but I couldn’t find a real need for it. If I operated only in the Windows world, I would buy JPad Pro. I was fairly impressed by this product. SciTE is very compact, but it’s a little rough around the edges. RealJ wasn’t bad, it’s meant for Windows-only developers and costs money for commercial use. I really wanted to like ED, but it was just too complicated and cluttered. Zeus was good in many ways, but just didn’t click with me on a couple of issues.
The choice of a development environment is a personal one and you should make your own evaluation. I probably left a couple IDEs off the list. Some IDEs I didn’t have the resources for, such as Borland JBuilder. I hope this helps someone.
Whilst Eclipse is a very capable environment, the eclipse web site is a horror. It’s one of those sites where you end up going round and round in circles trying to figure whose party you’ve gate crashed. Nobody seems to be talking to you.
Even figuring out which version to download took an absurd number of clicks.
However it is worth it. The key for me was reading this excellent set of http://www.3plus4software.de/eclipse/index_en.html“>tutorials at 3plus4software, which finally got me working with Eclipse.
Take a look.
I read lots about pro and con of Eclipse for Java, here. Anyone who has actually used Eclipse for C++ development? I am about to do the “big jump” Windows -> Linux, and am looking for something to replace the IDEs I used under Windows. Having Java *and* C++ under one IDE would be a real nice win.
Yes – I have used Eclipse for C/C++ development. It is still under heavy development but it is very useable. With many companies devoting full time developers to the project (QNX, Rational, Timesys, RedHat) it just gets better and better.
I have screenshots of Eclipse on QNX here:
The UI is basically the same idea on every platform, but since it uses native widgets there will be some difference.
I personally use it for Java development nearly every day and I have to say that I really enjoy using it. And it doesn’t require a 1Ghz CPU with 1G of memory. I run it very comfortably on a PIII-700 laptop with 256M of RAM.
Could someone explain why java is not simply compiled to native for each platform? If the source is cross-platform, why can the same source not be compiler natively for different platforms? Thanks
Rob, there is no reason that Java, the language, could not be compiled natively. If you look at Java purely as a language (a grammar w/ accompanying semantics), of course you can build a native compiler for that language. In fact, this is what I believe the GCC people have done with their GCJ compiler. A language is just a language. There’s no reason why someone couldn’t write a native compiler for languages that are traditionally not even compiled, such as Python or Perl. So one view is to look at Java purely as a language and there would be no reason a native compiler can’t exist for that language.
But, it just doesn’t happen that way. There are social, political, philosophical, technical, etc. motivations behind “languages” and you have to look at the big picture – you have to view these “languages” as *language platforms*. Java was designed to be compiled to bytecode and have that same bytecode execute unmodified on multiple hardware/OS platforms. But, IMNSHO, I don’t think the cross-platform nature of Java is the number one reason for its success. The Java API, first, the Java language (clean OO, exception-handling), second, and cross-platform support, third, contribute to the success of Java.
To give you another example, Perl was initially designed for system administration tasks involving a lot of text processing. But I’d say that Perl’s greatest strength today is CPAN. I am constantly amazed at the modules I find on CPAN. Object Orientation (OO) in Perl was tacked on as an afterthought and it shows. Also, Perl people are pretty big on the philosophy of TMTOWTDI “There’s More Than One Way to Do It”. Additionally, Perl runs well on Win32, but Perl was clearly designed for the UNIX world. Perl is also not compiled, it’s interpreted. But someone could make a native compiler for Perl if they wanted to. But such a practice would go against the “standards” of the Perl community – source should be open for all to see. All of this (and more) makes up what Perl is today.
All my opinions, of course. Maybe I over-dramatized Perl just a little.
Eclipse is looks beautiful under Linux. I used it (the GTK2 version) under RedHat 8 and I was stunned. I feel that Eclipse’s structure is terribly confusing. Once it’s set up it’s fine to use and I like the refactoring, ‘continuous’ compilation, debugging, and the window framework.
WSAD is so incredibly slow it’s not funny. I could not use it to develop J2EE applications. Most people don’t know this because they use Eclipse without all of the bloated plugins. But Netbeans is more effective here in my opinion although it doesn’t have a WYSIWYG editor for HTML/JSP.
SWT is nice on GTK2 and presumably Aqua (OSX) but it’s not very pretty on windows. I do not like the fact that they used SWT instead of Swing. It was NOT a speed choice but rather what was already being used by the Eclipse team. IBM did not make the initial choice since they simply purchased, supported, or whatever you want to call it, the eclipse project. They could have used Swing if they did the work. It would have been nice if they had used swing and pressured Sun to make API changes in Swing for the better. It is possible.
I do not like the attitude of IBM towards Netbeans. They treat Netbeans as if it doesn’t share the same goals as Eclipse. Eclipse and Netbeans are so similar in their goals than any other java projects that I can think of yet IBM continuously snubs them.
SWT is so much faster then SWING it isn’t funny. But, more importantly, SWT uses native widgets while Swing emulates the look of native widgets. Take for example the File Dialog. With SWT apps this will be the native control on any given platform. With Swing it is a sort-of-motif, sort-of-windows design that uses widgets that sort of look like the native platform but not quite.
As for netbeans – it is a java IDE written in java. Eclipse is an generic IDE written in java. We (QNX) have lots of customers using Eclipse and not doing any java work at all (C/C++, Embedded Systems Building, Performance Analysis, etc). Heck, there are people using Eclipse to do development in Cobol. So, although Eclipse’s Java IDE personality (JDT) does compete with netbeans, the platform as a whole is much much more.
I am using Eclipse just because of UML. Eclipse is not only a great tool but also a framework. Many plugins are available. One of them is EclipseUML. This is the best free UML solution, using SWT with GEF. It is a lot faster than ArgoUML, and really nicer. This is why Eclipse is better than Netbeans.
Borland bought Togethersoft, IBM bought Rational but EclipseUML is free and almost better :-). UML is Eclipse, and this the first time that UML is java developper oriented. Great tool….