Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Eclipse and MAC OS - A Natural Combination

Why Do Java Development on the Mac?

The ease of use of Mac OS X, the power and stability of UNIX, the integration of Java into Mac OS X and the availability of great development environments like Eclipse make the Mac a great Java development environment.
UNIX users feel at home in Darwin, the robust UNIX-based environment that underlies Mac OS X. That environment is accessible at any time from the Terminal application. All of the standard UNIX utilities and scripting languages are included in Mac OS X—editors such as emacs, vim and pico; file management tools such as cp, mv, ls and gnutar; shell scripts including bash, tcsh (csh) and zsh; and scripting languages such as Perl, PHP, tcl, Ruby and Python. For Java-based web engineers, Apache, Tomcat and JBoss are also included, so you can do JSP development or enterprise class J2EE applications.
Mac OS X also gives you a highly mobile platform. The PowerBook series provides a high-powered workstation that is completely portable and allows you to pick up and go, and then quickly resume work at a new location. Even as you open your laptop, network connections are being reestablished and the computer is immediately up and running.
Apple has made Java a core component of Mac OS X—every Mac ships with the full version of Java 2, Standard Edition included—meaning you have the Java Developer Kit (JDK) and the HotSpot virtual machine (VM) without downloading, installing or configuring anything. And because Apple has optimized Java on Mac OS X, Java applications act as first-class citizens on Mac OS X.
In addition to Eclipse many of the industry leading tools are available, including IntelliJ's IDEA, Borland's JBuilder, Oracle's JDeveloper, and Sun's NetBeans, just to name a few. Mac OS X also includes free developer tools which support rapid Java development right out of the box.

Getting Started

You can get a copy of Eclipse by visiting the Eclipse download page and downloading the latest build. (The current version of Eclipse requires Mac OS X v10.3 Panther.) All builds are delivered as .ZIP files.

Download and install Eclipse

  1. Using your Safari browser, go to the eclipse.org Website.
  2. Click Downloads.
  3. Click Main Eclipse Download Site. If you are not located in North America, use the mirror site closet to your location.
  4. Click the name of the Release Build you want. At the time of this writing, the "3.0 Stream Stable Build" is the latest developer preview of version 3.0. This version is currently fine for daily use.
  5. Under "Eclipse SDK, find "Mac OSX (Mac/Carbon) (Supported Versions)"—the file name is also displayed. Select either the HTTP or FTP download option.
  6. After reading the Notes, click "Download" at the bottom of the page.
  7. When the download is complete, unzip the archive into the appropriate folder.
    (Older versions of Stuffit truncated file names and caused problems with Eclipse. Make sure you are using the appropriate version.)

    Your installation is now complete.
  8. Click the Eclipse icon to launch the IDE.
The first time you run Eclipse, it completes a few remaining install tasks—such as creating a workspace directory—before the Eclipse environment appears.

Work through the tutorials

With Eclipse installed and running, you can begin by looking at an overview of Eclipse features and plugins installed on your system, and then doing a tutorial that guides you through building a simple Java application.
To see the overview of the Eclipse features: from the Help menu, choose About Eclipse Platform
To do a tutorial on building a simple Java application: from the Help menu, choose Java Development User Guide > Getting Started > Basic Tutorial

Resources for More Information

Maven in 5 Minutes

Maven in 5 Minutes


Maven is a Java tool, so you must have Java installed in order to proceed.
First, download Maven and follow the installation instructions. After that, type the following in a terminal or in a command prompt:
mvn --version
It should print out your installed version of Maven, for example:
Maven version: 2.0.8
Java version: 1.5.0_12
OS name: "windows 2003" version: "5.2" arch: "x86" Family: "windows"
Depending upon your network setup, you may require extra configuration. Check out the Guide to Configuring Maven if necessary.

Creating a Project

On your command line, execute the following Maven goal:
mvn archetype:generate -DgroupId=com.mycompany.app -DartifactId=my-app -DarchetypeArtifactId=maven-archetype-quickstart -DinteractiveMode=false
If you have just installed Maven, it may take a while on the first run. This is because Maven is downloading the most recent artifacts (plugin jars and other files) into your local repository. You may also need to execute the command a couple of times before it succeeds. This is because the remote server may time out before your downloads are complete. Don't worry, there are ways to fix that.
You will notice that the generate goal created a directory with the same name given as the artifactId. Change into that directory.
cd my-app
Under this directory you will notice the following standard project structure.
|-- pom.xml
`-- src
    |-- main
    |   `-- java
    |       `-- com
    |           `-- mycompany
    |               `-- app
    |                   `-- App.java
    `-- test
        `-- java
            `-- com
                `-- mycompany
                    `-- app
                        `-- AppTest.java
The src/main/java directory contains the project source code, the src/test/java directory contains the test source, and the pom.xml is the project's Project Object Model, or POM.


The pom.xml file is the core of a project's configuration in Maven. It is a single configuration file that contains the majority of information required to build a project in just the way you want. The POM is huge and can be daunting in its complexity, but it is not necessary to understand all of the intricacies just yet to use it effectively. This project's POM is:
<project xmlns="http://maven.apache.org/POM/4.0.0" xmlns:xsi="http://www.w3.org/2001/XMLSchema-instance"
  xsi:schemaLocation="http://maven.apache.org/POM/4.0.0 http://maven.apache.org/xsd/maven-4.0.0.xsd">
  <name>Maven Quick Start Archetype</name>

What did I just do?

You executed the Maven goal archetype:generate, and passed in various parameters to that goal. The prefix archetype is the plugin that contains the goal. If you are familiar with Ant, you may conceive of this as similar to a task. This goal created a simple project based upon an archetype. Suffice it to say for now that a plugin is a collection of goals with a general common purpose. For example the jboss-maven-plugin, whose purpose is "deal with various jboss items".

Build the Project

mvn package
The command line will print out various actions, and end with the following:
[INFO] ------------------------------------------------------------------------
[INFO] ------------------------------------------------------------------------
[INFO] Total time: 2 seconds
[INFO] Finished at: Thu Oct 05 21:16:04 CDT 2006
[INFO] Final Memory: 3M/6M
[INFO] ------------------------------------------------------------------------
Unlike the first command executed (archetype:generate) you may notice the second is simply a single word - package. Rather than a goal, this is a phase. A phase is a step in the build lifecycle, which is an ordered sequence of phases. When a phase is given, Maven will execute every phase in the sequence up to and including the one defined. For example, if we execute the compile phase, the phases that actually get executed are:
  1. validate
  2. generate-sources
  3. process-sources
  4. generate-resources
  5. process-resources
  6. compile
You may test the newly compiled and packaged JAR with the following command:
java -cp target/my-app-1.0-SNAPSHOT.jar com.mycompany.app.App
Which will print the quintessential:
Hello World!

Running Maven Tools

Maven Phases

Although hardly a comprehensive list, these are the most common default lifecycle phases executed.
  • validate: validate the project is correct and all necessary information is available
  • compile: compile the source code of the project
  • test: test the compiled source code using a suitable unit testing framework. These tests should not require the code be packaged or deployed
  • package: take the compiled code and package it in its distributable format, such as a JAR.
  • integration-test: process and deploy the package if necessary into an environment where integration tests can be run
  • verify: run any checks to verify the package is valid and meets quality criteria
  • install: install the package into the local repository, for use as a dependency in other projects locally
  • deploy: done in an integration or release environment, copies the final package to the remote repository for sharing with other developers and projects.
There are two other Maven lifecycles of note beyond the default list above. They are
  • clean: cleans up artifacts created by prior builds
  • site: generates site documentation for this project
Phases are actually mapped to underlying goals. The specific goals executed per phase is dependant upon the packaging type of the project. For example, packageexecutes jar:jar if the project type is a JAR, and war:war is the project type is - you guessed it - a WAR.
An interesting thing to note is that phases and goals may be executed in sequence.
mvn clean dependency:copy-dependencies package
This command will clean the project, copy dependencies, and package the project (executing all phases up to package, of course).

Generating the Site

mvn site
This phase generates a site based upon information on the project's pom. You can look at the documentation generated under target/site.


We hope this quick overview has piqued your interest in the versitility of Maven. Note that this is a very truncated quick-start guide. Now you are ready for more comprehensive details concerning the actions you have just performed. Check out the Maven Getting Started Guide.