May 22, 2009

Eclipse or NetBeans?

Surround SCM
Until recently, Eclipse seemed the IDE of choice for Java developers. At least this was the case for those developers who use Seapine Software applications, as Eclipse was the IDE that was the most mentioned in support cases, feature requests, etc. Sure, we would hear from the occasional IntelliJ IDEA user and others, but Eclipse was the most popular by far. Then, we started to hear about NetBeans. I was actually more familiar with NetBeans, as this was the IDE of choice of my college professor a few years back. More and more customers started requesting a plug-in for NetBeans. We released a NetBeans plug-in about a year ago for Surround SCM. As I have been posting examples on our labs site, I have debated whether I should post examples in Eclipse or NetBeans. So I started to do some research on the popularity of both IDEs. It appears that NetBeans has been slowly gaining more acceptance and, depending on who you believe, has passed Eclipse as the Java IDE of choice. I like NetBeans better. Granted, I am not a full-time Java developer and I do not work on applications for the space shuttle. But NetBeans feels more like an IDE to me and I think there is no comparison for GUI programming. Based on this preference, and the fact that some data suggested that NetBeans was in fact becoming more popular, I have posted most of my Java examples in NetBeans. I wonder what you think. Which one do you like better and why? Am I completely off base? I'd like to gauge from our users which IDE is really the most popular. Who knows, I may start posting examples in Eclipse :).