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The moose likes Struts and the fly likes IDE/Editor and STRUTS - Sue? Big Moose Saloon
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IDE/Editor and STRUTS - Sue?

Gregg Bolinger
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Sue,
What IDE/Editor(s) do you use to develop your STRUTS based applications?
What does everyone else use?
For my learning process I will probably be sticking with simple Text Editors like JCreator, Visual Slick Edit, etc.
Also, Depending on what IDE/Editor you use, what Plug-ins do you use. Because I know most editors don't come with STRUTS support by deafult.
Thanks.


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Thomas Paul
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I have run Struts within NetBeans without any trouble. NetBeans doesn't come with Struts support but since Struts is nothing more than a servlet application, running it in NetBeans was very easy using the built-in Tomcat server.


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Gregg Bolinger
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Originally posted by Thomas Paul:
I have run Struts within NetBeans without any trouble. NetBeans doesn't come with Struts support but since Struts is nothing more than a servlet application, running it in NetBeans was very easy using the built-in Tomcat server.

Wahoo! I get to pick Thomas' brain again.
So here is how I figure I set this up. I create a new Project. Create a New Web Module inside my project. Add my .tld files for struts, jstl, ect, put my jar files in the lib folder, and everything else is just JSP, JAVA, and XML files.
Is that about it?
Thomas Paul
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Exactly! Of course, I have totally screwed up my own installation and Tomcat won't run anymore but that is a whole different issue!
Bruno Arantes
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Joined: Apr 30, 2003
Posts: 24
You can also use the Struts Console, which can be used as a standalone program or as a plugin to many IDEs like IntelliJ IDEA, Eclipse, JDeveloper, JBuilder...
You can find Struts Console here.


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Lasse Koskela
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As far as I could interpret from the Struts Console homepage, it doesn't provide wizard-like tools for creating ActionForms etc., does it?
I'm talking about "right-click" -> "New..." -> "Struts ActionForm" or something similar.


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Chris Mathews
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Joined: Jul 18, 2001
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Originally posted by Lasse Koskela:
As far as I could interpret from the Struts Console homepage, it doesn't provide wizard-like tools for creating ActionForms etc., does it?
I'm talking about "right-click" -> "New..." -> "Struts ActionForm" or something similar.

Basically the Struts Console is GUI on top of the Struts Config file. Personally, I don't think the configuration file is all that complex and therefore I don't see the need for a tool. However, to each their own.
Lasse Koskela
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Joined: Jan 23, 2002
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Originally posted by Chris Mathews:
Personally, I don't think the configuration file is all that complex and therefore I don't see the need for a tool.

And most developers would probably agree until they encounter an XML configuration file with 1000s of lines... If you think of XML syntax, there's a lot of information that is either irrelevant for the developer or that could be represented in a GUI with much less screen space. That's why I think the Struts Console is a good thing indeed. Also, validation-on-the-spot is generally a great feature (as long as it doens't take up too much of your CPU cycles) which eliminates typos etc. from coming up during server startup.
[ May 29, 2003: Message edited by: Lasse Koskela ]
Chris Mathews
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Originally posted by Lasse Koskela:

And most developers would probably agree until they encounter an XML configuration file with 1000s of lines... If you think of XML syntax, there's a lot of information that is either irrelevant for the developer or that could be represented in a GUI with much less screen space. That's why I think the Struts Console is a good thing indeed. Also, validation-on-the-spot is generally a great feature (as long as it doens't take up too much of your CPU cycles) which eliminates typos etc. from coming up during server startup.
[ May 29, 2003: Message edited by: Lasse Koskela ]

The struts-config.xml in my current project is about 700 lines long (growing daily) and I haven't had any problems managing it. The key is that one is only editing a small portion of this file at any one time and usually edits take a matter of seconds. This in a small team (5 developers), maybe I would free differently if my team was bigger.
As far as validation goes, I validate against the DTD from within my IDE (IntelliJ IDEA).
I completely understand your points but I just haven't ran into a situation where I feel the need for an external tool. If it was integrated with my IDE I would probably use it, otherwise I am fine without.
[ May 29, 2003: Message edited by: Chris Mathews ]
Lasse Koskela
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Joined: Jan 23, 2002
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Are you using any "XML assistance" such as a collapsing/expanding tree view to locate the portion of the file you want to touch? I haven't met a situation where a change would've affected the whole XML document either. But still I find it a bit annoying to use CTRL-F (or "/" in vi but there you don't have options to locate the element I want to touch.
David Hibbs
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Struts Console (already mentioned) is pretty neat. WSAD 5.0 and its struts integration is really sweet, though. Of course, if your choice is freeware only, go with Struts Console.


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Axel Janssen
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Joined: Jan 08, 2001
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people in a local newsgroup said that one should give exadel struts studio a try. Currently its free, but next version will cost money, I think. Its a eclipse plugin.
Lots of visual stuff, code stub generators and the like. Will give it try.
[ May 29, 2003: Message edited by: Axel Janssen ]
Gregg Bolinger
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Originally posted by Axel Janssen:
people in a local newsgroup said that one should give exadel struts studio a try. Currently its free, but next version will cost money, I think. Its a eclipse plugin.
Lots of visual stuff, code stub generators and the like. Will give it try.
[ May 29, 2003: Message edited by: Axel Janssen ]


I downloaded this application. It's not a plug-in but a stand alone application.
I think it is very cool and I would like for some experienced users of STRUTS to give it a try and tell me what you think.
I ran through there little sample application tutorial they had in PDF form on the web page and it all worked first try.
It auto creates your ANT build.xml, web.xml, and struts-config.xml. The struts-config.xml can be graphically manipulated (super cool!) or you can code it by hand. And it has a built in Tomcat Server.
I kind of like it, however, since it is so auto everything, if you are learning struts, I wouldnt recomend it. Just like any other IDE.
[ May 29, 2003: Message edited by: Gregg Bolinger ]
Sergey Smirnov
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Joined: May 29, 2003
Posts: 167
I just want to make information about Exadel Struts Studio clear.
Struts Studio with current functionality is free and going to be free forever. Codename for this version is Exadel Struts Studio Community Edition.
We are going to have several other versions (Professional Edition, Advance Edition, Enterprise Edition) They will have additional functionality over the Community Edition including features that expand Struts scope (such as using JDO for persistent layer)
You are right. We are going to have Eclipse as a platform for all version mentioned above.
It will be two implementations for each version - as a plug-in and as a stand-alone tool.
Actually, any questions about Struts Studio and what is difference between Struts Studio and other GUI for Struts are welcome.
Darryl A. J. Staflund
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Joined: Oct 06, 2002
Posts: 303
Hi there,
Interesting app :-) I will download it and take a look-see. I have some questions off the top of my head that I'd want to ask myself after seeing the slideshow demo:
1. Exadel looks like its a stand-alone app. Since I usually develop Struts applications within the context of a larger J2EE app, I am not sure if I find this appealing as it means one more IDE to learn, more "application fragmentation", etc.
2. How does Exadel handle Struts applications that subclass Struts classes such as RequestProcessor, Actions, etc?
3. Does Exadel integrate with Strut's 1.1 extended features like Tiles and the Validator Framework?
4. How does Exadel handle modular Struts applications that incorporate multiple struts-config.xml files?
5. I like the drag and drop approach. However, some of my more complicated struts applications have well over 80 actions in them (primarily because they weren't modularized using Struts 1.1 module features.) How easy is it to lay out large applications like this?
6. The application is soon to be commercial. What is the proposed pricing and is it worth learning the tool now given that I may have to buy it later on?
My thoughts. I'll let you know how it handles some of my larger config files.
Darryl
Jason Menard
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Joined: Nov 09, 2000
Posts: 6450
I develope Struts apps using JBuilder 8 Enterprise, which has built-in support for Struts. I have been developing Struts in JBuilder since version 6 which, while not having built-in support, was easy enough to get working with no problems.
Sergey Smirnov
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Joined: May 29, 2003
Posts: 167
Originally posted by Gregg Bolinger:

I kind of like it, however, since it is so auto everything, if you are learning struts, I wouldnt recomend it. Just like any other IDE.

Actually, our primary goal for Struts Studio is to help newbie to learn Struts Framework faster. So, if you suggest that we are doing something wrong here, please, point us to the right direction.
Gregg Bolinger
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Originally posted by Sergey Smirnov:

Actually, our primary goal for Struts Studio is to help newbie to learn Struts Framework faster. So, if you suggest that we are doing something wrong here, please, point us to the right direction.

No, I am not saying you are doing anything wrong. I only say that because a lot of the code, specifically in the struts-config and web.xml files are all auto filled in for you as you construct your web app.
I guess I should say for ME, it is better to learn using plain text editors and then once I have the fundamentals down, I can move on to an IDE that saves me a lot of mundain work.
Sergey Smirnov
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Joined: May 29, 2003
Posts: 167
1. Exadel looks like its a stand-alone app. Since I usually develop Struts applications within the context of a larger J2EE app, I am not sure if I find this appealing as it means one more IDE to learn, more "application fragmentation", etc.

It is one of the many reasons we are going to switch Struts Studio from Swing to Eclipse. Struts Studio will be available as a plug-in for people who already use eclipse. The stand-alone application will be available also.

2. How does Exadel handle Struts applications that subclass Struts classes such as RequestProcessor, Actions, etc?

I do not thing there are problems for subclasses. May be only one thing: During adaptation existing application, Struts Studio tries to recognize the multi-modular structure parsing web.xml file. So, if you do not use web.xml to store information about modules there, you need to adjust modules roots by hand after adaptation is complete.

3. Does Exadel integrate with Strut's 1.1 extended features like Tiles and the Validator Framework?
4. How does Exadel handle modular Struts applications that incorporate multiple struts-config.xml files?

Those are the top features list for July 1, release:
  • GUI editor for Tiles definition file, Drag-n-drop from tiles definition file to JSP page, recognizing the tiles inside the pages
  • Advance GUI editor for Validations files
  • Multi-modular support

  • 5. I like the drag and drop approach. However, some of my more complicated struts applications have well over 80 actions in them (primarily because they weren't modularized using Struts 1.1 module features.) How easy is it to lay out large applications like this?
    Most Drag-n-Drop features are duplicated with context menu options.
    Actually, the most important thing that makes diagram crowd is a number of cross-links. We are working to make such diagram clearer, first of all.
    The number of actions just reflects on the length of scrollbar. Of course, the modular structure is preferable way. However, even with several modules, Struts Framework has a plain structure for application flow (with using GOTO paradigm for switching between modules).

    6. The application is soon to be commercial. What is the proposed pricing and is it worth learning the tool now given that I may have to buy it later on?

    Yes, some versions will be commercial. I have no information about price. Actually, I am not a right person to speak about prices with.

    My thoughts. I'll let you know how it handles some of my larger config files.

    Thanks. Any feedbacks that makeStruts Studio more helpful are welcome.
    [ May 29, 2003: Message edited by: Sergey Smirnov ]
    Sue Spielman
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    Joined: Apr 21, 2003
    Posts: 56
    Personally, I tend to work in JBuilder8. A number of the other tools and Struts support in IDE's have already been mentioned here so I won't repeat. I'll have to check out the Struts Studio. I haven't tried it yet, and it seems from the discussion it might be cool to take a look at.
    Sue


    President/Consulting Engineer<br />Switchback Software LLC<br /><a href="http://www.switchbacksoftware.com" target="_blank" rel="nofollow">www.switchbacksoftware.com</a>
    Sergey Smirnov
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    Joined: May 29, 2003
    Posts: 167
    Sue, we are looking forward for your judgement. Struts experts suggestions are extremely important for Struts Studio evolution.
     
    I agree. Here's the link: http://aspose.com/file-tools
     
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