Eclipse 3.5 and FDT 3.2 for Actionscript development – Part 2 – Additional plugins

In the first post of the serie I explained how to install a plugin. Here is a list of additional plugins that you can install if you need the features they provide:

  • Subclipse
    Update site: http://subclipse.tigris.org/update_1.6.xSubclipse is an Eclipse Team Provider plug-in providing support for Subversion within the Eclipse IDE.
    plugin_subclipse
  • ExploreFS
    Update site: http://www.junginger.biz/eclipse/ExploreFS is a tiny plugin that opens a selected file in the folder of the native file manager. It adds “Explore in File System” to the context menu of Eclipse’s package explorer, resource navigator, and other views.
    plugin_explorefs
  • Eclipse XML Editors and Tools
    Update site:  Galileo – http://download.eclipse.org/releases/galileo (included in Eclipse)
    Select Programming languages -> Eclipse XML Editors and ToolsXML, DTD and XML Schema Editors, validators, and XML Catalog support for Eclipse. Installing this you will be able to edit XML files inside Eclipse.

    plugin_xml

  • BigSource Zarkov
    Update site: http://update.bigsource.de/update BigSource Zarkov is a compiler wrapper for eclipse to simplify ant tasks. It features ant taskdefinitions with autocompletion for every compilertask. Creating ant targets with the choosen compiler and the comiler specific options will become more comfortable.

    The following compilers/players are supported:

    • mxmlc (fcsh) implemented
    • amxmlc implemented
    • compc (fcsh) implemented
    • acompc (fcsh) implemented
    • asdoc implemented
    • aasdoc implemented
    • Mtasc implemented
    • Haxe implemented
    • Flashplayer implemented
    • Browser implemented
    • ADL (Air Debug Launcher) implemented
    • ADT (Air Developer Tool) incl. Prepare, Package, Certificate and Sign implemented

    plugin_bigsourcezarkov

  • PixelBender Outline View
    Website: http://blog.joa-ebert.com/2008/10/08/pixelbender-outline-view/PixelBender Outline is a simple view for Eclipse. It allows you to browse through compiled PixelBender kernel files (pbj). Usually it is quite annoying when working with PixelBender. You always have to debug the shader if you did not write it yourself to know about parameters and stuff. The PixelBender Outline view allows you to navigate through that information in a comfortable way.
  • MetaLaunch
    Website: http://blog.joa-ebert.com/2009/05/11/metalaunch-for-eclipse/Ever wanted to start multiple launchers with one single click in Eclipse? MetaLaunch will solve this issue. Just select the launchers you want to start and then change the order to fit your needs. You can also select to launch those tasks sequential or in a one shot.
  • FlashHunter Deluxe
    Website: http://blog.joa-ebert.com/2008/06/17/flashhunter-deluxe/FlashHunter is a neat Eclipse plug-in Joa Ebert wrote that allows you to kill all running Flash player instances with a single click. He was implementing the fast Fourier transformation in Flash and he had a stupid error that caused an endless loop. Since he was testing with the standalone player the only way to get rid of it was Ctrl+Alt+Del and killing it. This was not really a nice workflow so he wrote the plug-in.

Feel free to suggest any other useful plugin posting a comment on this page.

Eclipse 3.5 and FDT 3.2 for Actionscript development – Part 1 – Installation

In the last four years I always used FlashDevelop for Actionscript 2 and 3 development but some time ago I decided to give a try to the Eclipse and FDT combo for various reasons:

  • Cross-platform
    Actually I’m using Windows but I’m hoping to switch to MacOS X as soon as possible and I would like to maintain my work-flow. Unfortunately FlashDevelop is Windows only.
  • Advanced Refactoring
    Advanced Refactoring add common refactoring tools like Rename Type, Rename Variable/Function, Rename Package and Move Type to the FDT 3 editor.
  • Advanced Code Completition
    This powerful feature auto-completes words and phrases during typing. The advanced code completion function is available for imports, types, members and lots of basic key words. FDT 3 code completion furthermore supports generators by using extension points.
  • Improved Autocompletition
    You can now use the auto-completion to generate whole methods. Insert a name into the body of a class and press <CTRL>+<SPACE> and a new method with that name will be created. You can also generate a constructor by the same procedure if the constructors name begins with the class name.
  • Organize imports
    FDT 3 enables your editor to organize and to perform all necessary imports for a complete package or even for your whole project by a single shortcut and certainly adds missing ones automatically. Thereby, moving classes and packages or renaming them becomes quite easy.
  • Live Error Highlighting
    The integrated ActionScript parser allows detecting and visualizing lexical and syntactical errors continuously while typing new code to the editor frame and for more, a semantic analysis is performed permanently to check types, members and declarations of both the current file and the whole project. Different kinds of problems can be tagged with “error”, “warning” or “ignore”. FDT 3 offers the opportunity to add problem generators to FDT 3 by using extension points.
  • Live Templates
    Templates provide a fast way to write typical coding structures. FDT 3 analyses the surrounding code and suggests variables matching the template like types and members.
  • Quickfixes
    Quickfixes are available for many syntactical and semantic problems. This covers a wide range of e. g. non terminated statements up to undeclared variables. FDT 3 will automatically add the semicolon where necessary or define a variable with the correct type.
  • Formatter
    An integrated and extensively configurable formatter will format the source code when you demand it by shortcut. All source code that is generated by FDT 3 will automatically be formatted as well. The formatter can be configured specifically for each project.

While testing this combination I decided to document everything for a future reinstalling and is not a bad idea share it with everyone, so here it comes this series of posts on Eclipse and FDT integration in your development work-flow.

Installation instructions

1) Install Java Runtime Environment

You can choose between Sun Java SE or Oracle JRockit (if your processor is Intel):

  • Java SE Runtime environment
    The Java SE Runtime Environment contains the Java virtual machine, run-time class libraries, and Java application launcher that are necessary to run programs written in the Java programming language. It is not a development environment and does not contain development tools such as compilers or debuggers.
    Download from: http://java.sun.com/javase/downloads/index.jsp
  • JRockit
    The JRockit JVM is a high performance JVM developed to ensure reliability, scalability, manageability, and flexibility for Java applications. The JRockit JVM delivers a new level of performance for Java applications deployed on Intel 32-bit (Xeon) and 64-bit (Xeon, Itanium, and SPARC) architectures at significantly lower costs to the enterprise. Furthermore, it is the only enterprise-class JVM optimized for Intel architectures, providing seamless inter operability across multiple hardware and operating configurations. The JRockit JVM makes it possible to gain optimal performance for your Java applications when running it on either the Windows or Linux operating platforms on either 32-bit or 64-bit architectures.
    Download from: http://www.oracle.com/technology/software/products/jrockit/index.html

2) Install Eclipse 3.5 (Galileo) Platform Runtime Binary

These drops contain only the Eclipse Platform with user documentation and no source and no programmer documentation. The Java Development Tools and Plug-in Development Environment are NOT included. You can use these drops  when you don’t need the entire SDK. Basically is a full working minimal Eclipse. I prefere to use this version and then install Java Development Tools to add ANT support. No useless stuff.

  • Download from: http://download.eclipse.org/eclipse/downloads/drops/R-3.5-200906111540/index.php#PlatformRuntime
    download_eclipse
  • Put the “eclipse” folder in C:\ or in any other path without spaces in the name. I used C:\.
    eclipse_folder
  • Edit the file C:\eclipse\eclipse.ini and replace the content with this (if you want you can customize the memory settings):
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    -startup
    plugins/org.eclipse.equinox.launcher_1.0.200.v20090520.jar
    --launcher.library
    plugins/org.eclipse.equinox.launcher.win32.win32.x86_1.0.200.v20090519
    -vmargs
    -Xms128m
    -Xmx1024m
    -XX:MaxGCPauseMillis=10
    -XX:MaxPermSize=128m
    -XX:PermSize=64m
    -XX:+UseParallelGC
  • If you installed JRockit you need to add also this line at the beginning of the file:
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    -vm
    "C:\Program Files\JRockit Real Time\jrrt-3.1.0-1.6.0\bin\javaw.exe"
  • Create a shortcut to your “C:\eclipse\eclipse.exe” file and use it to launch Eclipse.

3) Plugins installation

For every plugin is provided an Update site. To use it you need to launch eclipse and go to Help -> Install new software… and click on the Add… button.

install_new_software_1
Then insert the plugin name in the Name field and copy and paste the location of the Update site (provided under the plugin name in this post) in the Location field.

install_new_software_3
Then you have to select the desired update site from the combo-box labeled Work with:.

install_new_software_4
The available software will be listed. Select the software that you want to install and click the button Next >.

install_new_software_5

Click another time the Next > button.
install_new_software_6

Accept the license agreement and click Next > button.
install_new_software_7

Now the plugin will be install. Wait until it finish.

install_new_software_8

At the end the plugin will ask to restart eclipse. Click yes and after restart the installed plugin will be active.

The quickest way to import all the Update Sites is to download the file below to your desktop and go to Window -> Preferences -> Install/Update -> Available Software Site and click on the button Import… then select the downloaded file. All Update Site will appear in the list.

[download id=”5″]

If an Update site is not provided, you need to go to the Website of the plugin and download it, then place the jar file manually in the  “c:\eclipse\plugins” directory.
Note: Windows, Mac OS X, and Linux are supported by every plugin.


  • ANT (included in Java Development Tools aka JDT)
    Update site:  Galileo – http://download.eclipse.org/releases/galileo (included in Eclipse)
    Select Programming languages -> Eclipse Java Development ToolsApache Ant is a software tool for automating software build processes. It is similar to make but is implemented using the Java language, requires the Java platform, and is best suited to building Java projects.
    plugin_jdt
  • FDT3 (Development Tools for Flash)
    Update site: http://fdt.powerflasher.com/update/
    Update site beta version: http://fdt.powerflasher.com/update_beta/FDT 3 is the most powerful development environment for serious Flash and AS2/AS3 programming. With its highly efficient and time-saving features, FDT 3 will enhance your coding workflow and increase your productivity enormously.
    Try out FDT 3 and discover pure coding comfort.FDT is an amazing plug-in for the already mighty platform Eclipse. Thereby, it is platform independent and usable on nearly every system.With FDT 3, Eclipse turns into a powerful Flash and ActionScript editor with a workspace-wide incremental builder providing expend features like live error highlighting and quickfixes without compiling. Advanced code completion speeds up your workflow as well as auto code generation for variables, functions or even classes. The integrated formatter allows comprehensive and complex code customizing at any time. By the refactoring function, renaming of functions or classes at high project level becomes quite simple.

    For more, FDT integrates the Flex SDK Debugger into the Eclipse Debugging Perspective to provide the same debugging comfort as known from JDT and FlexBuilder

    See the list of all FDT features and take a look at the descriptions and the demonstrations of FDT’s power.
    plugin_fdt

Other posts in the serie:

  1. Eclipse 3.5 and FDT 3.2 for Actionscript development - Part 1 - Installation (June 26, 2009)