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Author Topic: anyone using Eclipse IDE?  (Read 1938 times)

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Offline dunkTopic starter

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anyone using Eclipse IDE?
« on: February 12, 2010, 12:12:37 PM »
http://www.eclipse.org/
i first saw this the other day.
it's quite a mature IDE, used a lot in the Java world i believe.
cross platform too so an option for those of us with eccentric tastes in hardware and OS.

the think that makes it potentially useful to us is this:
http://avr-eclipse.sourceforge.net/wiki/index.php/The_AVR_Eclipse_Plugin
AVR plugin.

it has support for Apache Ant as well which might interest one developer on this list...


so,
anyone used it?
is it worth investigating further?


dunk.

Offline paulstreats

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Re: anyone using Eclipse IDE?
« Reply #1 on: February 12, 2010, 07:53:19 PM »
I tried it about 4/5 years ago, but it seemed too complicated at the time.

I use a few different IDE's for different languages, and something like eclipse seems quite good cause you can combine them all into 1 but I remember it being a lot of hardwork to configure the different languages.

Maybe its come on a lot since then though?

Offline Trumpkin

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Re: anyone using Eclipse IDE?
« Reply #2 on: February 12, 2010, 08:15:19 PM »
I've also tried using it, and agree with paulstreats. It's too hard to use.
« Last Edit: February 13, 2010, 10:04:29 AM by Trumpkin »
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Offline little-c

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Re: anyone using Eclipse IDE?
« Reply #3 on: February 13, 2010, 05:53:28 AM »
its on our lab PCs, doesn't work though. some error of some sort. the lab machines are vista though, so that might explain a lot ;)

Offline Admin

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Re: anyone using Eclipse IDE?
« Reply #4 on: February 13, 2010, 07:35:56 AM »
Dunk . . . I'm utterly shocked you've just heard of it!!!

I tried it out a few years ago, but since I didn't have a need to program Java, I didn't touch it since. But I hear about people using it all the time . . . I recently re-downloaded it a few days ago because I heard about people using it as an IDE for ARMs. Probably won't install it until I need it, though.

I know Webbot uses it, as I occasionally see Eclipse errors in his WebbotLib alpha-version code :P

Offline Webbot

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Re: anyone using Eclipse IDE?
« Reply #5 on: February 13, 2010, 08:26:18 AM »
Yep I use it.

Partly because I use Eclipse all day every day for Java development.
Eclipse itself is a wonderful product and very stable. I would have no problem recommending it to anyone for Java development.

But Eclipse is purely an IDE - it is the plug-ins that make it work for Java, C, C++, HTML, WebServices, Database modelling - just about anything you can think of.

The plug in that Dunk mentions adds the AVR C support - and it works - but can be slightly flakey sometimes. For example: it often recompiles code for no apparent reason. It happens in the bkgnd so aint to much a headache.

What you will really like is all the code navigation and re-factoring. If I'd had to use AvrStudio to create WebbotLib then I'd have given up months ago. AvrStudio is basically notepad with a compiler and a debugger. So the code writing features are non-existent.
With Eclipse you can easily do things like:
find all references to a variable
find all the places that call a given routine
rename a method or variable and have it automatically change all references in all files.
Highlight the name of a function - press F3 and it takes you to the correct file/line# of where that code is defined
Integration with source control like CVS etc.

Thats just a tiny subset of editing features.

Yes - its 'big' to download but don't forget you can use it for writing all sorts of other code as well.

Interesting to see that with the ARM processors that ATmel have basically discarded AVRStudio. Instead the development system is actually Eclipse pre-bundled with their ARM plug-ins. If you already use Eclipse then you can just download their ARM plug-ins.

So we are all going to be migrated towards Eclipse anyway as it is increasingly unworthwhile for hardware manufacturers to write their own IDE.
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Offline little-c

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Re: anyone using Eclipse IDE?
« Reply #6 on: February 13, 2010, 09:56:42 AM »
code blocks is an alternative to eclipse. purely open source, so you can write your own plugins, or modify others to work with it.

better as a code editor though, its not as good as visual studios for running/debugging code.

Offline paulstreats

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Re: anyone using Eclipse IDE?
« Reply #7 on: February 14, 2010, 07:16:22 PM »
I quite like the Netbeans IDE shipped with Java, I didnt get along with it for the first few years (used JCreator instead), but now i'm used to it I like it.

Wha I'm trying to say is that an IDE is just an IDE. You use what you like to use. Of course trial run others occasionally and if they work for you then fine, if not then sack them off and maybe try again in a few years.

My thoughts are that Eclipse is a good idea, but the configuration required can be hard work. Its not right or wrong its just my preference :)

Offline dunkTopic starter

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Re: anyone using Eclipse IDE?
« Reply #8 on: February 15, 2010, 06:25:15 PM »
ok, after that very mixed review i decided to investigate further.

so to the complaints of "over complicated".
yes. there is an option for practically everything and the default settings are not always usable.
so there is a big learning curve. it's not going to be worth the effort if you don't need the features.

it is also a little buggy.
i suspect this is all due to the AVR plug-in which to be fair is not a finished product yet.
so i guess the following should be taken as a review of the AVR plug-in rather than of Eclipse.

occasionally (every few hours on my system) it craps out and won't let you do anything else useful.
restarting Eclipse fixes that though and (this is one of the cool bits) your session is restored exactly how it was when you left it.
that's a lot better a restart then many commercial products i have used so i'd rate it as only a minor issue.

most of the other little bugs are minor irritations rather than big issues.
the point Webbot makes about it recompiling code in the background is actually an option that can be turned off so it's a Feature rather than a Bug. (those 2 are so oftain interlinked...) you can switch it off in the Projects menu.

the biggest irritation i have at the moment is it does not save the file you are working on automatically when you re-compile a project adding an extra mouse click. i suspect this is a configuration option i've not found somewhere too...

so yea, all in all, perfectly stable enough to be usable.

as Webbot points out the features it adds once your code base gets larger are amazing.
again, there is a big learning curve here. features are not always easy to find, especially when it hasn't occured to you there might be a useful tool to do that.
but you don't need all those added extras to make it work.
it's already better than anything else i've used and i'm only on day 2.

so yea,
takes ages to get set up
but if you ever find yourself with more than half a dozen editors open at once on the same project give it a go.


dunk.

Offline Webbot

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Re: anyone using Eclipse IDE?
« Reply #9 on: February 15, 2010, 06:53:04 PM »
Quote
the point Webbot makes about it recompiling code in the background is actually an option that can be turned off so it's a Feature rather than a Bug. (those 2 are so oftain interlinked...) you can switch it off in the Projects menu.
Sure you can 'Auto-build' or just 'on demand'.
But my issue was that if I have a C project open, and several Java projects open. Then I change a source file in a Java project. The AVR C plug-in decides that it should rebuild the entire C project (even tho none of it has changed since it last choose to do it). This bug is purely to do with the third party C plug-in - its not a fundamental Eclipse problem. Of course if you only ever use it for C projects then it may not be a hassle.

Quote
the biggest irritation i have at the moment is it does not save the file you are working on automatically when you re-compile a project adding an extra mouse click. i suspect this is a configuration option i've not found somewhere too...
It probably is. I'm just so used to pressing Ctrl-Shift-S (save all modified files) before a recompile.


I still maintain that Eclipse itself is very stable. I normally have my laptop running it for weeks on end without ever powering off and no crashes and using it about 14 hours a day. Because its also an open environment, ie anyone can write add ons (like the AVR C plugin), then it is subject to disrepute if you have downloaded a third party plug-in that is buggy. And the AVR C plug-in is in that category. But it still probably has less strange behaviour than AVRStudio.

To be recommended IMHO for any serious software developer.

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Offline richiereynolds

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Re: anyone using Eclipse IDE?
« Reply #10 on: March 10, 2010, 08:51:50 AM »
Eclipse is an excellent tool, many fully featured, expensive products are built on top of it e.g. J2EE development for IBM's Websphere, which I hate, but nonetheless eclipse has fantastic distributed debugging, testing facilities etc. all built on.
There's plug in support for everything from database enquiry tools to SSH terminals to various source control systems. Pretty decent C++ plugin support too.
Plus, it's java, you can run if from your unix box, though it's pretty slow using X communication.
Happy to learn there's an AVR plugin! AVRstudio is certainly pretty limited.

 


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