Eclipse Theia 1.44 Release: News and Noteworthy

December 5, 2023 | 4 min Read

We are happy to announce the Eclipse Theia 1.44 release! The release contains 37 merged pull requests and we welcome three new contributors. In this article we will highlight some selected improvements and provide an overview of the latest news around Theia.

For those new to Eclipse Theia, It is the next-generation platform for building IDEs and tools for the web or desktop, based on modern state-of-the-art web technologies. For more details, please refer to this article and visit the Theia website.

We’re excited to recap that TheiaCon 2023, held on November 15th and 16th, was a resounding success with over 400 registrations. For insights and talks from the event, the recordings are available on YouTube. Don’t miss out on the wealth of knowledge shared there!

Please note that the community release 2023-11 is set to be announced next week!

If you are looking for a simple way to check out the new release, please download Theia Blueprint, which has just been updated to 1.44.

Eclipse Theia 1.44: Selected features and improvements

In the following, we will highlight some selected improvements in the new release. As usual we cannot mention all 37 improvements, however we will focus on the most notable changes as well as changes visible to end users. The corresponding pull requests are linked under the respective heading when applicable.

Support for “portable mode”

Theia 1.44 adds support for a “portable mode” (in Electron-based applications). In this mode, Theia will store all user specific data, such as preferences, workbench state, etc. in the same directory as the actual Theia application. This is useful in scenarios where you want to “port” a Theia-based application, e.g. on a USB Stick. To enable the portable mode, please see these instructions.

Support Language Icons

Theia 1.44 adds support for so-called “language icons”. Theia comes with a default set of icons. However, you can install new icon themes via VS Code extensions, e.g. the material icon theme. If these themes contain correct icons for languages, e.g. python, they will be shown for relevant files, but also in the code editor (see screenshot below). Please note that you can also switch to the icon theme “none” to hide all icons from the Theia workbench.

Add search history history hint

Theia 1.44 reveals a feature that has already been supported before, the history for search strings in the search view. When selecting the search field, you can use the up and down keys to browse through previous search strings. In Theia 1.44, we improve the usability by introducing an icon in the search field, which shows the user how to use the history (see screenshot below).

Improvement for Theia Adopters

The new Theia release contains several improvements for adopters, i.e. stakeholders which adopt Theia to build their own custom tool or IDE. Theia 1.44 adds basic support to test Electron Applications with Playwright. Please note that Theia provides explicit support for Playwright, including a page object model.

To keep track of the VS Code extensions and Theia plugins installed in an application, Theia 1.44 adds a command to list all installed plugins of an application. Finally, the new release supports forwarding the webview console log messages to browser console for better tracing log messages from within WebViews.

As always the 1.44 release contains much more than described in this article, e.g. several UI improvements and improved translations.

All these features and improvements (in total 37) were the result of one month of intensive development. Eclipse Theia follows a monthly release schedule. We are looking forward to the next release due next month, stay tuned! To be notified about future releases, follow Theia on Twitter and register to our mailing list.

If you are interested in building custom tools or IDEs based on Eclipse Theia, EclipseSource provides consulting and implementation services for Eclipse Theia as well as for web-based tools in general. Furthermore, if you want to extend Theia with features such as the toolbar or the test framework, EclipseSource provides sponsored development for Theia, too. Finally, we provide consulting and support for hosting web-based tools in the cloud. Get in contact with us to discuss your use case!

Jonas, Maximilian & Philip

Jonas Helming, Maximilian Koegel and Philip Langer co-lead EclipseSource. They work as consultants and software engineers for building web-based and desktop-based tools. …