Sunday Oct 28, 2012

Play Framework Plugin for NetBeans IDE (Part 2)

After I published part 1 of this series, the first external contribution (i.e., not by me) to the NetBeans plugin for Play Framework 2 was committed today.

Yann D'Isanto added support for creating new Play projects:

That completely solves a problem I was working on, in a different way altogether. I was working on creating a new wizard that would call "play new" on the command line and pass into the command line the entered name and application type (1 for Java and 2 for Scala). However, Yann's solution is better, at least in the sense in that it works, as opposed to mine which didn't, because of problems I continually had with the command line, since one needs to press Enter multiple times on the Play command line when creating new projects, which I wasn't able to simulate in my new wizard. Yann's approach is simply to follow the approach taken in the Project Type Module Tutorial, which explains how to register a project sample in the IDE.

I was inspired by Yann's contribution, especially when he mentioned that one needs to build Play projects on the command line. So, I added a new menu item on the right-click of a project for building Play projects, which simply passes "play compile" to the command line for the current project:

Via the IDE's main menu bar, you can also Build and Run the application, though the code for the Clean function needs to be added still, which would be a cool thing for anyone out there to add, by using all the existing code and then passing "play clean compile" to the command line.

Something else that Yann added is an Options Window extension, thanks to the Options Window Module Tutorial, for registering the Play installation, which is a step forward from my hard coded solution. I changed things slightly so that, when Build or Run are selected, without a Play installation being defined, the Options window opens, displaying the tab that Yann created, shown below. Notice that there's no Browse button, which would be a simple next step for anyone else to contribute. A small tip is to use the FileChooserBuilder from the NetBeans IDE APIs when working on the Browse button:

Looking forward to more contributions to the Play Framework 2 plugin for NetBeans IDE. Just leave a message here with your ideas, with your name, and then I'll add you to the project on, where I very much look forward to your contributions:


Geertjan Wielenga (@geertjanw) is a Principal Product Manager in the Oracle Developer Tools group living & working in Amsterdam. He is a Java technology enthusiast, evangelist, trainer, speaker, and writer. He blogs here daily.

The focus of this blog is mostly on NetBeans (a development tool primarily for Java programmers), with an occasional reference to NetBeans, and sometimes diverging to topics relating to NetBeans. And then there are days when NetBeans is mentioned, just for a change.


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