MacOS App Integration, Top Eclipse Juno Feature #10

June 14, 2012 | 2 min Read

Eclipse has provided high-quality tools to millions of developers for over 10 years, for free.  For the 7th consecutive year, Eclipse will ship a simultaneous release.  A simultaneous release is a single, coordinated, release containing dozens of related Eclipse technologies.  And for the 5th time, I’m assembling a Top 10 List of Eclipse features that I’m excited about.   I’ve done this for:

Eclipse Juno will be released on June 27th and will be comprised of 72 projects.  Over the next 10 days, I’ll count down the features / tools I’m most excited about.  These are mostly tools / technologies that I use on a regular basis, so if I missed your favorite tool – I’m sorry. Without further ado, number 10 on my Eclipse Juno Top 10 list is Proper MacOS Installs.

Eclipse has emerged as the de facto standard for building cross platform, rich-client applications – especially if you wish to provide a native experience.  SWT has provided native widgets for over 10 years and Eclipse ships with a variety of native fragments that provide tight integration into things like application launching, security and networking. However, on MacOS, Eclipse (and by extension RCP Applications) never quite fit-in.  Apple has a suggested format (disk layout) for MacOS applications, and when this format is adhered to, tight integration with Finder, Spotlight and other MacOS utilities is easily achieved.  Unfortunately, Eclipse has always shipped with its own layout, which is essentially the same  across all platforms and doesn’t align with the MacOS layout.

With Eclipse Juno, p2, and Equinox, you can now develop true MacOS applications in Java with a native feel and a proper application install (with self-update support).

Simply use the director (or product export wizard) and install to a directory ending with a .app.

If you do this with the ‘simple mail’ example that you can generate with Eclipse PDE templates, you’ll have a powerful mail app that rivals the native MacOS mail application :-).

In addition to MacOS support, p2 and Equinox have released a number of notable improvements. As part of Juno, Equinox will ship a reference implementation of the OSGi Core Release 5.  This includes a number of new APIs such as the Resource API and  VersionRange.

A big thank-you goes out to Pascal Rapicault and Brian de Alwis for the work on native Mac installs.  Tom Watson deserves the credit for leading OSGi, Equinox and the Runtime effort at Eclipse.  Thanks guys!

Ian Bull

Ian Bull

Ian is an Eclipse committer and EclipseSource Distinguished Engineer with a passion for developer productivity.

He leads the J2V8 project and has served on several …