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Favorite IDE and why?

Matt Holloway
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Joined: Oct 16, 2003
Posts: 53
I'm just trying to get an idea of what people's favorite IDEs are and why. I'm currently addicted to (the now depricated) Sun ONE Studio CE 4.1, I find it easy to use. I've tried Borland JBuilder, but wasn't keen on it. I use WebLogic at work (out of necessity), but still like to revert to Sun's old studio.
Marilyn de Queiroz
Sheriff

Joined: Jul 22, 2000
Posts: 9047
    
  10
Moving to IDE's and Other Tools forum


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"Yesterday is history, tomorrow is a mystery, and today is a gift; that's why they call it the present." Eleanor Roosevelt
Stefan Wagner
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Joined: Jun 02, 2003
Posts: 1923

eclipse: opensource, multiple-platforms, many features, no guibuilder.


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Lasse Koskela
author
Sheriff

Joined: Jan 23, 2002
Posts: 11962
    
    5
Eclipse: free, lot of high-quality plugins, I'm familiar with the shortcuts
IDEA: nice GUI, built-in J2EE support, although I'm still trying Eclipse shortcuts in IDEA and that doesn't work out too well


Author of Test Driven (2007) and Effective Unit Testing (2013) [Blog] [HowToAskQuestionsOnJavaRanch]
Jeroen Wenting
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Joined: Oct 12, 2000
Posts: 5093
did the next semester start already? That's usually when the "what's the best IDE" questions come up as students go looking for new toys (and are disappointed when they're told to use a text editor and learn the language instead of a fullblown IDE and learn the tool).


42
Gregg Bolinger
GenRocket Founder
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Joined: Jul 11, 2001
Posts: 15299
    
    6

This is a very popular question here at the ranch. Just to save you some time and some time for people that have already answered this question in the past, take a look at:
http://www.coderanch.com/t/101888/vc/your-Favorite-EE-IDEs-free
http://www.coderanch.com/t/101803/vc/your-favourite-lite-IDE-free
http://www.coderanch.com/t/101796/vc/Favorite-Free-EE-Purpose-IDE
http://www.coderanch.com/t/101242/vc/Which-IDE-most-used-professionals
http://www.coderanch.com/t/101027/vc/Which-IDE
http://www.coderanch.com/t/100921/vc/which-IDE-learn-Java
http://www.coderanch.com/t/102509/vc/Java-IDE-comparison-chart
Have fun.


GenRocket - Experts at Building Test Data
Jason Menard
Sheriff

Joined: Nov 09, 2000
Posts: 6450
My favorite IDE by far is JBuilder X Enterprise. The JBuilder Enterprise Suite gets you Together J as an added bonus. Of course this is for a professional production environment where somebody else is footing the bill. You get what you pay for though. If you're looking for something more affordable, Eclipse works nice and IntelliJ IDEA is worth considering as well.
Sudharsan Govindarajan
Ranch Hand

Joined: Jul 03, 2002
Posts: 319
My favorite is Gel
Reasons:
1. Free
2. Faster (built on Delphi)
3. Simple, no-frills, no GUI editing

Sudharsan
Alan Sandhurst
Greenhorn

Joined: Apr 30, 2004
Posts: 21
Originally posted by Sudharsan G'rajan:
My favorite is Gel
Reasons:
1. Free
2. Faster (built on Delphi)
3. Simple, no-frills, no GUI editing

Sudharsan


Nice idea, but it's windows only- hard to imagine it getting the level of open source support to keep pace with other o.s. ides.
Ko Ko Naing
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Joined: Jun 08, 2002
Posts: 3178
Originally posted by Jason Menard:
My favorite IDE by far is JBuilder X Enterprise. The JBuilder Enterprise Suite gets you Together J as an added bonus. Of course this is for a professional production environment where somebody else is footing the bill. You get what you pay for though. If you're looking for something more affordable, Eclipse works nice and IntelliJ IDEA is worth considering as well.


I vote for JBuilder X as well... Code Folding feature is great!!!


Co-author of SCMAD Exam Guide, Author of JMADPlus
SCJP1.2, CCNA, SCWCD1.4, SCBCD1.3, SCMAD1.0, SCJA1.0, SCJP6.0
Mark Spritzler
ranger
Sheriff

Joined: Feb 05, 2001
Posts: 17256
    
    6

I am a huge fan of IntellJ IDEA. I have tried Eclipse, Together, and NetBeans.

I am the envy of all my co-workers.

Mark


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How to Ask Questions the Smart Way FAQ
Gregg Bolinger
GenRocket Founder
Ranch Hand

Joined: Jul 11, 2001
Posts: 15299
    
    6

Originally posted by Mark Spritzler:
I am a huge fan of IntellJ IDEA. I have tried Eclipse, Together, and NetBeans.

I am the envy of all my co-workers.

Mark


Agreed. Except the envy part. IDEA is my favorite although I would consider it more of an advanced editor.
Ernest Friedman-Hill
author and iconoclast
Marshal

Joined: Jul 08, 2003
Posts: 24187
    
  34

Originally posted by Mark Spritzler:
I am a huge fan of IntellJ IDEA.


Yo tambien!


[Jess in Action][AskingGoodQuestions]
Nick George
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Joined: Apr 04, 2004
Posts: 815
Well, I ain't never tried any ItelliJ IDEA, but i find it VERY hard to beleive that it is $500 better than Eclipse. It had better... you know... shoot, can't think of anything funny.


I've heard it takes forever to grow a woman from the ground
Chris Mathews
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Joined: Jul 18, 2001
Posts: 2712
Without a doubt, IntelliJ IDEA is the best IDE I have ever used.
Nick George
Ranch Hand

Joined: Apr 04, 2004
Posts: 815
And someone would have to do some pretty fast talking to convince me that it makes sense to lay down a grand for an editor (JBuilder), when Eclipse is free.
[ May 14, 2004: Message edited by: Joseph George ]
Chris Mathews
Ranch Hand

Joined: Jul 18, 2001
Posts: 2712
The productivity enhancements that IDEA offers over the competition are well worth the cost of license. In fact, it pays for itself quite quickly.

The best advice that I can give is for you to try it for yourself and see.
[ May 15, 2004: Message edited by: Chris Mathews ]
Gregg Bolinger
GenRocket Founder
Ranch Hand

Joined: Jul 11, 2001
Posts: 15299
    
    6

Originally posted by Joseph George:
Well, I ain't never tried any ItelliJ IDEA, but i find it VERY hard to beleive that it is $500 better than Eclipse. It had better... you know... shoot, can't think of anything funny.


A Perfectly valid argument. Eclispe is, IMHO, the best free IDE. If I hadn't recieved a free license for IDEA I probably wouldn't have bought it either. But that's only because I don't code for a living. If I did, I'd pay whatever I needed to for IDEA.
Mark Spritzler
ranger
Sheriff

Joined: Feb 05, 2001
Posts: 17256
    
    6

Originally posted by Gregg Bolinger:


A Perfectly valid argument. Eclispe is, IMHO, the best free IDE. If I hadn't recieved a free license for IDEA I probably wouldn't have bought it either. But that's only because I don't code for a living. If I did, I'd pay whatever I needed to for IDEA.


True for me too, I wouldn't have tried IntellJ IDEA. But having that license, and now using it, I would definitely pay $500 for it. I prefer it over Eclipse, even with the price tag.

When I tried Eclipse, I didn't feel comfortable using it, and thought that there was a little learning curve to understand their "terminology", and it was. In IntellJ, I felt good coding from the start. I thought that the design was easy to pick up without having to read some sort of tutorial or manual, like I did with Eclipse.

Although Free is always good, most of the time.

Mark
Shay Shmeltzer
Greenhorn

Joined: May 03, 2004
Posts: 23
I think that there are two types of IDEs, the enhanced editors (like IDEA and Eclipse) and the full blown IDEs like (Oracle JDeveloper, JBuilder, and WSAD).
It depends on what you like but if you are after a more visual way of developing that will save you a lot of the Java coding associated with J2EE development than you probably would prefer something from the second group.

Looking at this group I think Oracle JDeveloper gives you the best bang for the buck. At 995 (free if you are not developing production applications), you get much more than what you get with IDEA. Like: visual JSP/HTML and Swing development, Struts page flow modeler, Modeling and generation of EJB and Web services, XML editing and visual XML Schema editor, and a very powerful J2EE framework that will save you a lot of coding called Oracle ADF - just download and try it out http://otn.oracle.com/products/jdev
Jason Menard
Sheriff

Joined: Nov 09, 2000
Posts: 6450
Originally posted by Joseph George:
And someone would have to do some pretty fast talking to convince me that it makes sense to lay down a grand for an editor (JBuilder), when Eclipse is free.


Where time and productivity equal money, it's a no brainer. If you are a hobbyist or a student, then you don't need something like JBuilder. If you are working on a development team in an enterprise setting, it quickly pays for itself IMHO, particularly if the entire team is using the same IDE.
Warren Dew
blacksmith
Ranch Hand

Joined: Mar 04, 2004
Posts: 1332
    
    2
I use CodeWarrior, though their Java product is now only available in their inexpensive "learning edition" package. Why? It seems to me to be much more conducive to efficient writing of code than the other IDEs I've tried out - largely due, I think, to retaining the best of the features requested by customers over the years. For example, I like to work on several files at a time and spread them out over a large screen; it works fine for this, while some IDEs seem to fight it. It allows me to set up a source tree that doesn't perfectly reflect the package structure, which can sometimes be useful. I think it's more mature than most Java IDEs because it has been around longer than Java has; it's optimized for ANSI C++, and those optimizations work well for Java in my experience.
Alan Sandhurst
Greenhorn

Joined: Apr 30, 2004
Posts: 21
I was using IntelliJ for over a year, and switched to Eclipse in January of this year, mainly out of curiosity.

I did find IntelliJ a nice IDE to use, and easier to get used to initially, but now that I'm familiar with eclipse, I find it has the most of the features of IntelliJ, and its CVS integration is much better than IntelliJ's (V.3) was.

Also, it's open source, and there's a lot of momentum behind it- it's going to keep getting better . There's also a huge number of plugins available for it- including a really nice UML tool.

I really liked IntelliJ, it's a great IDE, but I certainly don't think it's worth the $500 over Eclipse, in terms of productivity or usability.
Alan Sandhurst
Greenhorn

Joined: Apr 30, 2004
Posts: 21
Originally posted by Jason Menard:


Where time and productivity equal money, it's a no brainer. If you are a hobbyist or a student, then you don't need something like JBuilder. If you are working on a development team in an enterprise setting, it quickly pays for itself IMHO, particularly if the entire team is using the same IDE.


Don't know about that - I was contracting on a large enterprise banking project last year, in excess of 150 developers, and they were using Eclipse. Productivity was the same as any other project I've worked on.

I don't know if JBuilder is a per seat license or not, but it would have to offer an awful lot IMO to pay for itself in that kind of setting.
Chris Mathews
Ranch Hand

Joined: Jul 18, 2001
Posts: 2712
Originally posted by Alan Eustace:
I really liked IntelliJ, it's a great IDE, but I certainly don't think it's worth the $500 over Eclipse, in terms of productivity or usability.

We will just have to agree to disagree on this one.

Personally, I don't think that Eclipse comes anywhere close to competing with IDEA on either usability or productivity... IDEA is in a league of its own.
Gregg Bolinger
GenRocket Founder
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Joined: Jul 11, 2001
Posts: 15299
    
    6

Originally posted by Chris Mathews:

We will just have to agree to disagree on this one.

Personally, I don't think that Eclipse comes anywhere close to competing with IDEA on either usability or productivity... IDEA is in a league of its own.


I agree. Oh no, this is turning into an IDEA vs Eclipse thread. Yuck!

Anyway, someone can corret me if I am wrong but there is 1 single thing I love about IDEA that eclipse doesn't do (to my knowledge). When I implement an interface, I can hit CTRL-I and select all the methods I want to override. And IDEA just puts them in my class for me. With Interfaces like MouseListener where there are 4 or 5 methods, this saves me a lot of typing.
Chris Mathews
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Joined: Jul 18, 2001
Posts: 2712
Originally posted by Gregg Bolinger:
Oh no, this is turning into an IDEA vs Eclipse thread. Yuck!

Isn't that what happens to every IDE discussion? Of course, it is nice to have the occassional JBuilder Lunatic... just to keep things interesting.
Alan Sandhurst
Greenhorn

Joined: Apr 30, 2004
Posts: 21
Originally posted by Gregg Bolinger:



Anyway, someone can corret me if I am wrong but there is 1 single thing I love about IDEA that eclipse doesn't do (to my knowledge). When I implement an interface, I can hit CTRL-I and select all the methods I want to override. And IDEA just puts them in my class for me. With Interfaces like MouseListener where there are 4 or 5 methods, this saves me a lot of typing.


Eclipse has this also
Alan Sandhurst
Greenhorn

Joined: Apr 30, 2004
Posts: 21
Originally posted by Chris Mathews:

Isn't that what happens to every IDE discussion? Of course, it is nice to have the occassional JBuilder Lunatic... just to keep things interesting.


He he ...

To be honest, I was a huge IntelliJ fan, I still think it's a great IDE. It has a certain X factor that Eclipse doesn't.

On the other hand, in day to day development, I find Eclipse just as useful, but in slightly different ways . It just takes a little getting used to. It has all the features of IntelliJ, and some others IDEA doesn't. I'm sure the same is true in reverse.

Bottom line really for me boils down to :

a) Eclipse is free. I'd find it impossible to justify the $500 per seat spend to my boss if I were in the position of choosing an IDE for a large development team.

b) Eclipse is open source, and has a *lot* of momentum behind it, including the money pumped into it by IBM.

FWIW vis a vis other IDEs, I used to rate Netbeans, but the last few editions I tried seemed buggy and were missing features I wanted/needed. As a result I switched to IDEA

I've used JBuilder Enterprise in the past, it seemed a fine IDE, but no better than IDEA or Eclipse, and not worth the money IMO.
[ May 17, 2004: Message edited by: Alan Eustace ]
Jeroen Wenting
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Joined: Oct 12, 2000
Posts: 5093
I used JBuilder until it came time to upgrade (wanted more complete XML and JSP functionality) and I had no money (having just emerged from half a year unemployment) to afford the latest JB Pro or Ent. so I tried Eclipse and liked it.

Indeed there's some teething trouble getting started in a new environment. Expect the first few days or weeks (depending on how intensively you use it) to be less productive than before the switch, but that's true whichever tools you switch between (even upgrading to a new version of the same tool may cause it, if the changes are profound).

Comparing the featurelists of IDEA and Eclipse I see no reason to shelf out for IDEA, maybe others do.
Could I afford JBuilder Enterprise, I might have enough of a case to buy that (but then again, maybe not, Eclipse does pretty much what I want from it).
Chris Mathews
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Joined: Jul 18, 2001
Posts: 2712
Originally posted by Jeroen Wenting:
Comparing the featurelists of IDEA and Eclipse I see no reason to shelf out for IDEA, maybe others do.

It's not about feature lists and until you try you won't understand.
Jon Entwistle
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Joined: Feb 20, 2003
Posts: 118
Has to be emacs with the mighty JDE. Initialy more complex to learn than vi but much more powerful. Completely configurable and extendable. And of course it is free
[ May 31, 2004: Message edited by: Jon Entwistle ]

SCJD, SCEA
Jeroen Wenting
Ranch Hand

Joined: Oct 12, 2000
Posts: 5093
Originally posted by Chris Mathews:

It's not about feature lists and until you try you won't understand.


I don't care about religion so that can't be used as a reason either
Seeing as both of my parents were excommunicated for wanting to marry a heretic I keep an open mind about religion and won't join any of them

Apart from religious fervor and featurelist, which other reasons would there be for me the hand over $600 (including EU salestax...) for IDEA when I'm happy with Eclipse which cost me nothing?
Or maybe instead of spending $800 or so to upgrade my JBuilder which I know will make me happy?
Ashik Uzzaman
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Joined: Jul 05, 2001
Posts: 2370

Eclipse. Specially for its plugin architecture and open source friendliness.


Ashik Uzzaman
Senior Member of Technical Staff, Salesforce.com, San Francisco, CA, USA.
Tim West
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Joined: Mar 15, 2004
Posts: 539
To those that are concerned by the price of IDEA, why not download it and give it a try for 30 days?

I use Eclipse myself, but I'm a junior developer and to me $500 is an awful lot. That said, a lot of the guys around me have forked out for IDEA, this includes people that work for companies that themselves make other Java IDEs and provide them for their employees for free.

From what I've seen, IDEA does everything Eclipse does, but does it more intuitively, reliably, quickly and with less hassle. J2EE integration is excellent...in Eclipse to add a property to an entity EJB I edit about 3 files (bean, two XML files), they edit one - they add a property to the bean, the Weblogic XML files are updated with a single command. And this can be set up without messing around with plugins that may or may not work with your version of the tool, and without a plugin like Lomboz that enforces its J2EE structure on your project. (Unless I'm very much mistaken on its use). Simple things like XML and JSP highlighting and JSP code completion work without a plugin from another company that itself may or may not be free (commecial use concerns).

Ultimately what these people say is that $500 is nothing compared to the amount of time (and the value of their time) they save using it. They make it up each week.

Now, I'm all for open source, and I've been very very impressed with Eclipse, particularly M9, but IDEA for my money is the Porsche of IDEs. As someone more eloquent has said on this forum before, just coz you can get a Daewoo doesn't stop people forking out for a Porsche.

Anyway, I'm not sure I've said anything that hasn't already been said in this post, but given IDEA is free to try, my plan is to see if for me it's worth the money.

Cheers,



--Tim
[ June 01, 2004: Message edited by: Tim West ]
 
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