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Re: [eclipse-dev] Eclipse rant

My replies is beneath yours, in order.

Boris Pruessmann wrote:
First, I don't think that this is the proper place to discuss such topics, but as you started it here...

If so what is the right place? I might have made a mistake posting to an incorrect mailing list but this seems like a top priority developer problem to me (flames aside).

1) I don't find any information about the environment you are using. What hardware do you have, what os etc. You don't event state which Eclipse version you are using.

Eclipse Platform

Version: 2.0
Build id: 200206271827

On a Windows XP Profossional Version 2002 build 2600, SP1.
Intel Pentium III processor 730 MHz 256 MB of RAM and 1 Gigabyte of swap.

2) Reading your post, I had to realize that you didn't took the time to read the manual or the help of Eclipse before starting to use it.

Perhaps, but while wondering inside the trail of endless rather unorganized (editor prefrences under Window menu?) menu-maze I couldnt find it, I skimmed over the Eclipse manual, no excuses, I did not fully RTFM.

3) Concerning your 2.: That's a feature. You can toggle it via the "Show Source of Selected Element Only" toolbar button.

Thank you.

4) Concerning your 4.: This never happened to me with the standard configuration. Perhaps you can tell us whether you use any other (third party) plugins?

It's a vanilla eclipse for development, no 3rd party plugins.

5) Concerning your 5.: You should try giving Eclipse more memory via -vmargs -Xmx... (see jre docs). Sounds like the Java garbage collection
   is doing overtime.

Indeed I tried that with but still no-go, I cannot get it to swap right, it seems that whatever I do paging takes forever, even when I'm clearing RAM and giving some more residency to java.

6) Your sixth remark: Never experienced this, but this might be related to

Correct, its as if it pages-out to nowhere.

7) Concerning incremental compilation: Again your comments show that you did
   not take the time to "learn" how to use Eclipse (nor that you took the
   time to look at the preferences). This can be turned off and btw. it's
   the very first option you see when bringing up preferences.

In addition, I totally disagree with your opinion that incremental compilation doesn't work on huge projects. Again, I think your problem
   is the lack of heap memory you gave Eclipse when starting it.

I noticed this as a pain where you cannot save without halting, sometimes to a "zombie" un-rendered window for a few seconds, and somtimes (most of the times) more, this is especially bad when editing a file outside of Eclipse and reloading the changes within the IDE, also random Eclipse compilation errors where I have to close the view and reopen it again to get rid of (without changing source code).

Seems as if most of your problems have its roots in the lack of understanding Eclipse, how it works and how it's configured. However, this might be the only thing that can be taken from your post - making the out-of-the-box configuration of Eclipse to better fit the needs of the developer that wants to start over immediately.


BTW: If you have performance related problems, it might be a better idea to file a bug ticket. You'll see that there are already some issue concerning the performance and the memory footprint ...

As I shall.

Thank you,



It's important to mention that these are _strictly MY personal opinions_, and *NOT* the opinions of my employer. (or family, friends or acquaintances, etc. :)
They are solely mine.

On Mon, 28 Oct 2002, dotan wrote:

Dear eclipse-dev moderator, I hope that you will publish this rant, you'd be surprised, sometimes they are good for evolution too.

I'm suffering from several problems in the Eclipse development environment, I would like to mention them as they are all consistent bugs and annoyances.

0. Open a file in Plugin Development view and edit it, Go into Debug view, start debug as Java Application then go to the Plugin Development view and having a blank (unrendered) window with no editor at all, I get consistant hangs, sometimes opening and closing the Plugin view pane a few times solves this.

1. Open a file in Plugin Development view and edit it, Go to debug view, start debug as Java Application, finish debugging, when you open the file again in the Plugin Development you only see the last function you debugged (opening and closing the file tab solves this, totally unacceptable and an especially annoying bug).

2. I've encountered several times where Ecplise just refuses to open the Plugin Development tree at all, I've noticed this after debugging several times, closing the entire application and reopning it (which by itself is a rather heavy operation) seems like the only solution I've found.

3. Eclipse is using 72 megabytes of memory under normal operation, even when idle, on average, where does all that memory go? I know where it *definitely* doesnt go, that is, not to the low-tec graphics, or un double-buffered screen refreshing, or the slow I/O...

4. Spontaneous curruption of the .metadata worksapce information, though this happend a relatively low number of times (exactly 5 times to this day), it was the disease of myriads of exotic symptoms, the most common one being "Refer to the log file", and getting booted from Eclipse, refering to the log file showed errors of ClassLoader failing, and other interesting, surely by-design errors, I solved this one by backing up my .metadata directory, just in case Eclipse decide to "roll over and play dead" again.

5. General unacceptable sluggish slowness, this is by far the most commmon problem, say if Eclipse is used as a GUI framework this is could be acceptable (the users themselves dont notice anything unusual from any other monstrous Java application) but as an IDE its just plain emberessing, the keyboard input and the screen output lags, when using eclipse exclusivly the refresh time is considerably better, but still not good enough for most touch-typers, ranging from 1 to 10 seconds on average, but when tabbing and sharing my (multi tasking) operating system with more than 1 application, that is, an application other than Eclipse, the lags get to over a minute.

6. Having Eclipse as a background process for a long time and returning to it leaves Eclipse in an unworkable slow state, I find it hard to work that way, as maybe a certified real live retarded person would be able to work at this speed, any person who works near a keyboard all day will find this amusing, if not sad, perhaps the Eclipse team should think about it as good tool to use in special education or in down syndrom therapy, not as a serious code writing IDE.

Another one, but "not a bug but a feature", The Eclipse way of recompiling upon saving is maybe an interesting feature in that "boo ha bad idea taken too far" anthropological sort of way, but otherwise its not very cost-effective in large projects, there should be a way to disable this and get back reality.

I admit, I type fast, I work fast and I want my computer there with me, I have other big applications like Oracle servers, Internet Explorers, Adobe Acrobat and Microsoft word open when I *work*, but _come on_, do you really expect any serious developer to use the tool seriously? in comparison to any other editors in UNIX (e.g., Emacs or vi) or Windows (e.g., Source Insight, or even Microsoft's own IDE) this is ridicules.

I didn't expect it to work well, it just looked better in the ad, call me when you grow up, cause right now, this doesnt cut it, I'll stick with the command line, thanks.


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