Netbeans 6.0 Visual Web Pack Performance Improvements

One of the main concerns of Netbeans VWP 5.5.1 is its performance. The performance degrades when the project size grows. A dedicated tiger team has been formed to look in to the performance of VWP. We did several performance studies and much of our findings are reported at Some of the problems have been fixed and some more will be fixed soon. I did a bench mark with a real world project of about 50 pages. Here are the results.

Netbeans 5.5.1 Netbeans 6.0
Mac Windows Mac Windows
Opening the project (No pages Opened) 8 secs 15 secs 5 secs 12 secs
Opening first Page 1:05 min 1:40 min 9 secs 15 secs
Dropping a Table Component 12 secs 20 secs 5 secs 8 secs


Hi, I find the navigation editor two slow, with Netbeans 5.5. My application has 20 pages only. It takes 5 minutes or more to open the navigation editor. It takes the same amount of time when adding a new navigation link between any two pages, and even editing the text on a link. I am using fairly good machine, 1 GB Ram IBM R60 Duo Core laptop, with 1.6 GHZ processor. I wonder whether this has to do with my design, and whether other people are experiencing the same performance issue.

Posted by Chris on July 02, 2007 at 01:05 AM PDT #

Hi Chris, 1 GB RAM is kind of low (if you have VISTA or OS with lots of other running programs). But 5 min is kind of odd. I tried Navigation Editor with 128 pages with lots and lots of links. It took about 2:20 secs to open on my low end machine, which is beaten down a old P4 Celeron with 1.5 GB RAM. On my high end Mac laptop it takes about 40 secs. BTW, for NB 6.0 we are working to improving the Navigation Editor. You can find the progress at 9. It also has the test project I used.

Posted by Winston Prakash on July 02, 2007 at 03:51 AM PDT #

Hi Winston. Is this integrated in M10?

Posted by Alexis MP on July 02, 2007 at 04:33 AM PDT #

Yes, some of them are already in M10 as explained in the performance wiki.

Posted by Winston Prakash on July 02, 2007 at 04:36 AM PDT #

Yes... now Netbeans is now really faster but... I noticed main web components changed package! from: com.sun.rave.web.ui.component to: com.sun.webui.jsf.component It's terrible! I can use my 5.5.1 projects into 6.0 version!!! Do you confirm that?

Posted by fabio on July 03, 2007 at 03:05 AM PDT #

Hi Fabio, there are two kinds of components
JSF 1.1 components with package com.sun.rave.web.ui.\*
JSF 1.2 components with package com.sun.web.ui.\*
When you create a J2EE 1.4 project you get JSF 1.1 components and JSF 1.2 components while creating Java EE 5 project
This is true for NB 5.5 & 5.5.1 also

Posted by Winston Prakash on July 03, 2007 at 03:41 AM PDT #

Hi Winston, I have earlier created project using netbeans 5.5.1 with tomcat 5.5, it is therfore a J2EE 1.4 project using JSF 1.1 components . I want to convert this project into a Java EE 5 project which uses JSF 1.2 components and also I want to use tomcat 5.5. Is it possible ? What is that I have to do for it? .. Thanx's in advance.

Posted by Prathamesh on July 04, 2007 at 04:40 PM PDT #

Thanks for the post on this. I have been using Netbeans 5.5 and VWP on a small(ish) project at work now for a few months. I have tried it on Linux, Mac (new 4 core Xeon with 5GB of RAM) and Windows XP. I have noticed almost the exact same difference in times that you have posted but I want to add some other issues that may help some people. I have one page that has a number of dropdowns that get their information from a database table. This page also has a number of other components, but "IF" I set this page as viewable in the design mode, then quit out of the application it will take the IDE around 2 minutes to load on both Windows and the Macintosh. If I choose some other trivial page then it loads in seconds. However, if I need to work on that page it then takes a minute or so to get to it. Ok, now the next weird issue. If you use more than 20 or 30 calendar components on a page then the resulting HTML page that eventually gets delivered to the client using your application will be almost unusable. There is some Javascript listener on each component that hogs all available CPU for the client. So in short do NOT use more than 10 calendar components on one screen. Next. The IDE will use up tons of memory (I have 2 GB in my Windows machine) if you are working on a page that has say 100-200 components on it. I can easily get the program to use over 800MB with just working with widgets on this one page. Add to that trying to launch Tomcat and a LOT of machines will run out of memory. Unfortunately it doesn't ALWAYS tell you that it ran out of memory and the server log will just give you some weird error. It actually isn't generally Netbeans out of memory but Tomcat (my guess). In short I have to quit out of Netbeans multiple times a day and then live with the 1 to 2 min load. I also have learned to quit out of EVERY other app when doing development. Next is a weird one. If you make a panel and set the layout to X,Y and drag any component on the screen it will work as expected, however if you drag a textfield that is NOT editable to the panel and then drag another textfield in that is not editable you will no longer be able to move those two components around the screen. Component 2 will forever be tied to component 1's location. I call this the slinky effect. If you add another component it will also be linked. So in short you can't use textfields that are set to not be editable in a panel. This is obviously a bug, but I haven't had time to open yet another call to Sun to report it. Next is the issue of using panels and the using textfields. If you do then it will not render exactly as it is on the screen. This is beyond frustrating when layout needs to be very close to exact. Having said all that this is still a great product and I like it. I noticed you put the times for NB6, but that is still in beta, so there is no way for those of us with serious performance issues and in a production project to upgrade to it. Also, one last issue (small). If you have a page with multiple panels on it and you want to drag a component from one panel to the next you can't easily do it. It would be nice to just click and drag it to the one you want, but if you do that you will drop the component back on the main panel . The only way I found to accomplish this was to move the compoent in the left hand component library, but that just randomly drops the comonent somewhere in the new panel. Sorry to rant, but I am finishing up my first "production" project with NB and VWP and it has gone "ok" and I hope that others may benefit from my pain.

Posted by Steve Michael on July 05, 2007 at 12:14 PM PDT #

Hi Steve, thanks for the info. This will certainly help us to concentrate on certain areas for the on going performance tasks. Would you mind creating an issue at and put the above details, to keep a record of the issues you have encountered and for us to refer it later. Thanks.

Posted by Winston Prakash on July 09, 2007 at 07:38 AM PDT #

I'm trying to learn java, jsp. I'm using mac and already installed the J2EE SDK Update 2 with tools. Now I want to install VWP. It seems very easy, but the installation always fails to find suitable NetBeans IDE Directory. What is this? is it the which is in my /Users/MyName/ ?? or where is it? thanks, I just need to get started.

Posted by yud on July 10, 2007 at 08:54 AM PDT #

Yud....I think I had the same need NetBeans 5.5.1....the visual pack will work no problem with just delete NetBeans 5.5 & download 5.5.1

Posted by mark on July 11, 2007 at 04:03 AM PDT #

Hi Mark, Thanks, it works now.

Posted by yudi on July 11, 2007 at 11:06 AM PDT #

Winston, I am experiencing the same issue from Prathamesh post (above). As you can imagine, larger projects would take some time to manually re-factor to support 1.2. Is there a way to either inter-mix JSF versions within the same project or is there an easy upgrade path to JSF1.2.

Posted by frank on August 08, 2007 at 11:15 PM PDT #


Posted by guest on November 19, 2007 at 03:13 AM PST #

Hi Winston,

We're using Netbeans 6.0 and noticing that after deploying our woodstock based app onto sun app server 9.1 and hitting our simple page with our IE 6 browser that the page load time seems higher than we believe it should be. I've noticed a serious halt like action that occurs on the client side which I believe is related to all the woodstock generated output which relies heavily on dojo/dijit. Have you noticed this too? Adding 20 textboxes and a couple of buttons to the visual jsf page should show this issue. Is there any way around this delay (a setting in web.xml or faces config) ?

Thanks for the help,

Posted by Dan on March 11, 2008 at 03:14 PM PDT #

Woodstock team is putting tremendous efforts to fix these problems. You can find the details at

If you are interested in installing the latest components, read

Posted by Winston Prakash on March 12, 2008 at 06:55 AM PDT #

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