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NetBeans 6.8 Beta Coming; Does Oracle Care?

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NetBeans 6.8 just crossed milestone 2 and the beta is set to release next ThursdayGeertjan Wielenga, a NetBeans technical writer and DZone Leader, has been writing extensively on the capabilities and usage of NetBeans as an IDE and a platform.  His research on the usage of the NetBeans platform has revealed a wide array of applications.  It has led him to create his own acronym, YANPA (Yet Another NetBeans Platform Application).  The significant underlying capabilities, stability, and reliability of NetBeans produce a high level of trust in the platform.  That trust is the explanation behind YANPAs. 

The future of NetBeans could be very bright if Oracle puts its weight behind its promotion.  Many developers are worried, however, that Oracle may choose to officially support it's own IDE, JDeveloper, instead of NetBeans.  There hasn't been a lot of talk about NetBeans at this week's Oracle OpenWorld, and developers don't know what to make of it.  An Oracle forum thread suggests that Maven will be used to facilitate collaboration between the JDeveloper and Netbeans IDEs, so that means at least the Netbeans IDE will be preserved.  Any more information about Oracle's plans for the NetBeans platform may not come until the Sun acquisition is complete.

Here are the main new features coming in NetBeans 6.8:

Java Enterprise Edition 6
  • Now supported in Maven projects
  • Deployment, debugging, and profiling with GlassFish v3
  • RESTful web services support and Java Persistence JPA 2.0
  • EJB use in web apps

JavaServer Faces 2.0 (Facelets)
  • Code completion, error hints, documentation popups, namespace completion, and tag auto-import for Facelets
  • Editor support for Facelets libraries

Kenai Support
  • Full JIRA support
  • Enhanced issue tracker integration

  • Enhanced support for Java EE 6, Groovy, and Scala projects
  • Customizable dependency exclusion in dependency graph

  • PHP 5.3 support including syntax highlighting, code completion, code folding, and navigator
  • Symfony Framework support
  • FTP/SFTP improvements

  • Support for JRuby 1.3.1, Ruby 1.9 debugging, and RSpec 1.2.7
  • Support for creating Rails 2.3.2 apps with dispatchers
  • Improved rename refactoring, type inference, and navigation

Groovy & Grails
  • Groovy 1.6.4 supported and bundled
  • Methods introduced via AST tranformations visible in code completion
  • Reliable Grails process exiting on Windows platform

  • New Thread Microstates indicator and Thread Details view (Solaris and Open Solaris specific)
  • New tools for I/O Monitoring, Thread Analysis and Race Detection
  • Faster synchronization during remote development

  JIRA plugin  Expression Language support in Java Server Faces 2.0
                          JIRA Plugin interface                            Expression Language support in Java Faces Server

  • More articles on recent NetBeans developments can be found here and here.  To learn more about NetBeans, check out the NetBeans 6.7 Refcard.


Suhail Ansari replied on Thu, 2009/10/15 - 2:42am

NetBeans is a very good product. But if Oracle has no interest in NetBeans then it should donate the NetBeans to some open source community (for e.g Apache community).

Toni Epple replied on Thu, 2009/10/15 - 4:14am

Nice article, but there is a misconception in this sentence:

"[...] that Oracle may choose to officially support it's own platform, JDeveloper, instead of NetBeans"

JDeveloper is -unlike NetBeans- just an IDE and not a platform. So -unlike NetBeans- you cannot create applications on top of JDevelopers core. With NetBeans you actually get two things, an IDE and a stable and mature Desktop Application Framework that is used by many companies. There are many more than the ones Geertjan has published that we aren't allowed to talk about.

So while the whole NetBeans IDE versus JDeveloper story is very interesting, I'm even more interested in news about the platform.

I'm not really worried about the future of the platform though. There are many companies using it and there are many individuals and even some companies living on selling support for it. There's a vital community that is capable and willing to maintain and enhance the platform, but it would be good to hear from Oracle what they think. It would be great to know if they see the value of the platform and maybe invest in productizing it (since they are good at that), but I'm not sure if Oracle knows the difference between IDE and Platform. Actually I'm quite sure they don't, since even many people inside SUN don't know about the Platform...






Jeroen Wenting replied on Thu, 2009/10/15 - 6:23am

Oracle has a history of adopting tools from companies it purchases to replace its own IF those tools are superior than their own. IF Netbeans is superior to JDeveloper, expect it to eventually replace JDeveloper in Oracle's tool lineup. But given Oracle's recent investment in Eclipse for their BEA line and launch of a new version of JDeveloper in parallel, this may not happen any time soon (of course that investment was made before the Sun acquisition).
IOW, if Netbeans has merits to Oracle over JDeveloper and can be modified to encapsulate the functionality JDeveloper offers that Netbeans doesn't (which is significant) there's no reason why Oracle wouldn't adopt it and eventually EOL their existing product rather than Netbeans.
If Netbeans can't so hold up, it has no right to exist anyway.

Charles (Ted) Wise replied on Thu, 2009/10/15 - 7:16am

"JDeveloper is -unlike NetBeans- just an IDE and not a platform. So -unlike NetBeans- you cannot create applications on top of JDevelopers core."

I dislike JDeveloper. It's a lousy IDE and it makes a lousy platform for applications. But your statement is incorrect. JDeveloper _is_ a platform. Oracle SQL Developer and Data Modeler are both built on the JDeveloper platform. Both are in constant development and are moving forward.

I would dearly love to see JDeveloper replaced by Netbeans (or Eclipse for that matter) but Oracle has built extensive functionality on top of JDeveloper to create Fusion products (SOA services, BPEL flows, etc.). My hope is that Oracle puts together a long-term plan to migrate from JDeveloper to Netbeans. The alternative is living with the JDeveloper mess for the indefinite future.

Guido Amabili replied on Thu, 2009/10/15 - 8:50am

I see one big advantage of NetBeans over  JDeveloper: The JavaFX plugin.

With the endorsement of Larry Ellison ( write the UI of OpenOffice in JavaFX, etc) , I think there will be in short two main Ide with good javafx support: NetBeans and IntelliJs IDEA.

The rest will be used either to build Flex applications or OSGI bundles.



Aljoscha Rittner replied on Thu, 2009/10/15 - 9:50am in response to: Charles (Ted) Wise

Oracle SQL Developer and Data Modeler are both built on the JDeveloper platform. Both are in constant development and are moving forward.

 I can't agree 100% with you. Ok, SQLDeveloper is a different kind of JDeveloper with a special intention to access a OracleDB with a PSQL Editor and something litte more. SQLDeveloper use a generalized API from JDeveloper. But for me it's a special kind of IDE, not a real platform. Or with other words: The JDevelopers platform idea is only few years old. The NetBeans platform idea has matured the last 10 years.

br, josh.


ion gion replied on Thu, 2009/10/15 - 10:39am

Where is the Python support ?

I mean, comme-on, Django anyone

Aljoscha Rittner replied on Thu, 2009/10/15 - 1:05pm in response to: ion gion


Where is the Python support ?

I mean, comme-on, Django anyone



br, josh.

Hantsy Bai replied on Fri, 2009/10/16 - 10:43am

Another open source IDE is available now , IntelliJ IDEA...

A good choice for Java development...


Geertjan Wielenga replied on Sun, 2009/10/18 - 6:52am

For the record, here's my response to the "JDeveloper _is_ a platform" nonsense:


Fabrizio Giudici replied on Sun, 2009/10/18 - 3:32pm

I agree with Geertjan and others. It sounds as JDeveloper (and AFAIU IDEA) can be eventually defined as a "platform for development tools", but the high number of industrial applications cited by Geertjan, Toni and others demonstrate that people need a real, general purpose platform.

I think Oracle will do a smart thing if they invest in the NetBeans Platform making it a profitable asset, as there's evidence there's an existing market for it.

Liezel Jane Jandayan replied on Thu, 2011/08/18 - 8:19pm

NetBeans IDE 6.8 is the first IDE to offer complete support for the entire Java EE 6 spec with improved support for JSF 2.0/Facelets, Java Persistence 2.0, EJB 3.1 including using EJBs in web applications, RESTful web services, and GlassFish v3. The NetBeans IDE is an award-winning integrated development environment available for Windows, Mac, Linux, and Solaris.



Mateo Gomez replied on Thu, 2012/04/26 - 1:12am in response to: Aljoscha Rittner

i have been looking for those...thanks for the links Josh mexican bread

Matt Coleman replied on Fri, 2012/04/27 - 1:44am

great platform as usual Netbeans..keep up the good work graphic artist buffalo

Mateo Gomez replied on Fri, 2012/07/27 - 4:50am in response to: Suhail Ansari

i certainly agree with you on this Suhail..both has to agree

 mexican dessert recipes

Gurjeet Saini replied on Thu, 2014/09/04 - 9:59am

Netbeans has come a long way, now at ver 8.0. You can view the roadmap and get the downloads from here https://netbeans.org/community/releases/roadmap.html

Lake Life ECJurong ECYuan Ching EC 

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