Ekke's Indigo Highlights

What´s New in Eclipse Indigo


The 5th season in the Eclipse community is nearly here!

In Bavaria we have a 5th season at the end of September: the Octoberfest. As an Eclipse user or developer, this 5th season is in June, when the next Eclipse Release Train reaches its destination. This year it’s the Indigo Release (aka Eclipse 3.7 )

Same procedure as every year?

Every year the same thing is repeated with exact precision: a new Eclipse Release is born, exactly the same day as scheduled one year before. Every year it contains more and more projects, but there’s always the same precision. Don’t tell me Open Source projects aren’t disciplined! If you take a look at some of the big vendors of commercial products you’ll get announcements, but delivery won’t be on-time and will often be bad quality. Not at Eclipse! All is transparent from the beginning: schedule and planned content. I try to do my daily work beginning with Milestone M5 and report any problems early via Bugzilla. I’m always astonished by the high quality of even those Milestones.

62 projects are part of the Indigo Release Train → 22nd June 2011

The Eclipse Release Train has existed for some years, and that mean participating projects not only have to verify that their own project is running well – it must also work without any problems together with all other projects. Project members have to be disciplined and they have some overhead on work – but it’s worth the pain.

This year there are 62 projects being released the same day: June 22nd, 2011.

New Projects Every Year: 11 Join the Indigo Release

This year 11 new projects are linking up to the Release Train:



If you want to know more about these new projects, what they’ll provide, why they’re part of Indigo and who’s the project lead, you should follow the interviews with the project leads at JAXenter and in Ian Skerrett’s Blog. Retrospective: two years ago in 2009 there were 10 new projects in the Galileo Release: Xtext, PDT, Tml, JWT, EclipseLink, ACTF, Swordfish, Riena, MTJ, and Memory Analyzer. Today, I always use Xtext, EclipseLink or Riena in my daily work at customer projects.

Release – Train – Projects are Only the Tip of the Iceberg

Not only are the 62 projects of the Release Train increasing the value of a new version of Eclipse, but there are always many other Eclipse-related projects waiting for the next release, before they provide new versions of their software. That’s also valid for projects I’m working on, like redView – we’ll provide a new version soon after Indigo is out.


The Release Train has increased the quality and reliability of all participating projects and eases upgrading to the next Eclipse version. The installation procedure has become easier using the Eclipse Marketplace to install projects directly inside your running Eclipse IDE.

Last month the counter jumped over the 500,000 mark. Indigo makes it even easier to install using the Marketplace: now you can use Drag-and-Drop.



Do you remember how difficult it was some years back to install several projects together into one workspace ? Now it’s another scenario: the Release Train cares about the collaboration of projects, the Marketplace eases the installation and p2 is working silently in the background.

Sometimes, new releases also mean that bugs are fixed: perhaps small but important for your work. So I’m happy per ex. that bug 308070 was fixed: now PDE Export Ant Tasks also support cyclyc – dependencies.



Next, an important part of the yearly releases are the Eclipse Democamps, which occur worldwide in the weeks surrounding the release date.



At Eclipse Democamps you’ll meet the community, learn news from the projects and – yes, it’s similar to the 5th season at Bavaria: drinking some beers with friends after finishing the demos ;-) I’m always happy if I was invited as a speaker – this year the first democamp happened in Frankfurt and now I can’t wait for my ‘home’ event in Munich – we have nearly 200 registrations and later this month I’ll be in Hamburg – as always at a really nice location. The Democamps also fill the gap between EclipseCon North America and EclipseCon Europe (aka EclipseSummit).



My next Indigo Highlight will focus on some projects from the Eclipse Runtime for RCP and RAP – development.


BTW: If you want to say ‘thank you’ – that’s easy: become a ‘Friend of Eclipse’ – this year named ‘The Indigo 500′. Take some $$’s and be part of Eclipse. Also there’s a valuable bonus: you’ll get early access to download the Indigo Release.


My Indigo Highlights

I’m using Eclipse projects from Runtime, Modeling, Tooling and Mobile. I’ve tried to group my personal Highlights – it’s not a ranking. Also, Ian Bull has the Copyright to blog about ‘The Top 10’ ;-) My selection is subjective and not complete, but I’m hoping to give you some hints on what’s new at Eclipse:

Overview: Projects, ReleaseTrain, Market Place, Democamps, …

EclipseRT (RCP/RAP): Eclipse Riena, RCP, RAP, …

EclipseRT (OSGi, Server): Equinox, Jetty, EclipseLink, Gyrex, …

Tooling (DVCS): Egit/JGit and MercurialEclipse

Tooling (UI): WindowBuilder

Modeling (X): Xtext2, Xbase, Xtend2, …

Modeling (EMF): CDO, EMFSTore, …

Ekkehard Gentz has worked as an Independent Software Architect for more then 30 years in the domain of business applications (ERP). Ekke's focus is on model driven development, OSGI applications and mobile Java Apps. Ekkehard is Committer at the Eclipse Riena Project and Project lead of Open Source Projects redView, redVoodo, enMOcs and red-open. ekke twitters at @ekkescorner and blogs at

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