Thursday, November 29, 2012

Getting started

I have no idea where we are going...

I'm just going to post something small.  Getting Eclipse.  I'm a big Netbeans kind of guy.  However, let's learn Eclipse.

First you will need a JVM on your system.

I use OpenJDK 7, you should too.  Java version 7 has a lot of cool features that you should really start using.  Yes, there are some security concerns about Java, but the main baddies out there require users to visit laced websites.  Users should go to sites they get in emails, in the first place, and second, use Java carefully.  For the most part we're going to be talking developer stuff, so if you are paranoid, only have developers have Java.

Okay next we need to download Eclipse.  The current version is 4.2 Juno, which is what I recommend you get.  It has all of the latest and greatest hooks for all the current stuff and looks great on GTK desktops.

Go here to grab it.

I run 64-bit Linux and for some reason I'm feeling EE tonight so that's the binary I grab.  If you are a Windows box or Apple box the page will reflect the platform.  If you don't dig the Java EE thing, grab a different flavor.  The only difference is the plugins that come with the file, it's not like you cannot download more plugins later.

Once you have the tar.gz file (or zip file for Windows), I usually place it in a folder in my home directory called "bin".  You should be able to right click the tarball and select "Extract Here" or whatever it is for your platform.

Some pictures...
The tarball file.

Extract Here action

Now you should have a folder in your bin directory called eclipse.  Go ahead and move the tarball into the eclipse folder, that's just what I do, you can archive the file if you want.

You will eventually see a launcher icon called, er, eclipse.  Double click it to get the Eclipse splash screen and start loading the IDE.
Launcher File
Splash screen, pretty!
At some point you are going to be asked for a location for a workspace.  This is basically a place on your disk where your projects will be stored.  I usually keep quite a few workspaces on my system, I'm going to call me src/eclipse-workspace.  That's just how I name things, you can leave the default if you like it better.

I don't normally check the "do not ask again" checkbox, because I have a lot of workspaces.
Once you have your workspace selected, click OK and you should get the Welcome screen.  Welcome to Eclipse!


Okay so where am I going with this?  No idea.  I guess tomorrow we will download Apache Tomcat and make Eclipse aware of the Tomcat install.  Sounds like a brilliant idea.  (I'm usually a Glassfish kind of guy but apparently I'm going to go outside my comfort zone here for a while.)

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