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Thorsten Marx: My Five Favorite NetBeans IDE Features!

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Continuing a series of articles focusing on NetBeans users and their five favorite NetBeans IDE features, here's the next part, by Thorsten Marx. -- NetBeans team.

My name is Thorsten Marx and I’m working as product manager and developer at e-Spirit AG in Germany.

I have used all of the major IDEs in the last years and for a long time Eclipse was my absolute favorite IDE. But after spending some time using NetBeans for private projects, it has convinced me. At work we are free to use the tools we need to be productive so I choose NetBeans because I have used it for my private projects and had good experiences with it.

What are your 5 favorite NetBeans features?

It is hard to pick my five favorite NetBeans features and I promise that if you ask me the same question in a year I will give totally different answers!

1. Maven integration. The Maven integration just rocks. It binds the default IDE commands like "run", "compile", and "test" to the corresponding Maven goals. And all the commands can be edited, for example, when I want to run a web application with Jetty, I just have to change the run command to “jetty:run”. It is also possible to run custom Maven commands. (Click to enlarge the image.)

This is how Maven integration is meant to be.

2. Issue tracker integration. The integration for various issue trackers directly into the IDE is a great support for my development workflow. I don’t have to switch between the IDE and the browser to view or edit tasks. All important issues are just a tab away. (Click to enlarge the image.)

3. Profiler. What I really like about the NetBeans Profiler is that it is easy to use. (Click to enlarge the image.)



I have tried some other profilers before (e.g., Eclipse TPTP), but the NetBeans Profiler was the only one that worked immediately.

4. Project view and Files view. In the Project view, I have an overview of all the important files for my development process.

But if I want to edit other files which are not directly part of the project (e.g., gitignore or README), I can simply switch to the Files view to edit these files. This helps me a lot because I don’t have to leave the IDE.

5. Better code. NetBeans has a lot of cool features helping me to write better code. For example, the Java hints show me changed method signatures and let me change the Javadoc.

The FindBugs integration in Source | Inspect identifies problematic parts of the code and I can fix it before I commit it. (Click to enlarge the image.)

Next, the Sonar plugin (radar-netbeans) shows me all issues found by sonar directly in my IDE and, once again, I don’t have to leave the IDE.

Do you and your colleagues also want to share your team's favorite NetBeans features with the world? Write to netbeans dot webmaster at gmail dot com.

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