The Eclipse Theia Community Release 2023-11

December 14, 2023 | 4 min Read

We are happy to announce the fourth Eclipse Theia community release “2023-11”, version 1.43.x!

Don’t know about Eclipse Theia, yet? 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 a well-rounded introduction to Theia and visit the Theia website.

In contrast to the monthly releases, community releases are provided every quarter by the Theia project. A dedicated release branch allows contributors to harden and even hotfix a community release. Finally, third-party technologies, such as Eclipse GLSP or CDT Cloud, select the community release as a compatibility anchor, i.e. they provide versions that are compatible with a specific community release. Learn more about the advantages of the Theia community release and visit the Theia release page.

In a nutshell, if you adopt Theia and do not always want to consume the monthly releases, the community releases are your way to go!

Before we dive into the details of the new community release, we are 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

Further, we are happy to announce our first community call on March 14th 2024. In the open Theia community call, we give an update about Theia, the ecosystem and the community. Furthermore, we want to host open discussion among the community of Theia adopters, contributors and users. Feel free to suggest items to the agenda.

Now, let’s summarize some highlights on the road to this fourth Theia community release!

Highlights of the Theia 2023-11 community release

A community release is the result of three months of development. Therefore, the 2023-11 release contains the improvements that were added in the Theia releases 1.41, 1.42 and 1.43, which is in total, 111 astonishing pull requests. Let’s look at four highlights!

Remote SSH Development (1.43)

A groundbreaking feature in 1.43, remote SSH development, allows seamless development on remote machines. This functionality enriches the development experience by integrating Theia’s capabilities with any remote host. For additional information, check out the 1.43 announcement.

Notebook Support

This release introduces powerful notebook editors, allowing users to handle interactive data visualizations and executable cells in a versatile manner, akin to Jupyter Notebooks. Ideal for data-driven applications, this feature marks a significant expansion in Theia’s functionality. For a deeper dive, see our 1.41 announcement.

Improved Startup Performance

The 1.42 update brings substantial optimizations to the frontend, leading to a 40-60% increase in startup speed. Additionally, the earlier appearance of the application window enhances the user’s perception of performance. For more details, please refer to the 1.42 announcement.

Support for Test Controllers

Enhancing testing across various languages, this feature simplifies managing and executing tests within Theia, also aligning with the VS Code extension API. This integration enables the use of existing VS Code extensions to support testing in languages like Java, TypeScript, and Playwright.

These were just some selected highlights from the latest Theia community release, but there is much more!

The 2023-11 release also ensures compatibility to the latest VS Code extension API. As you might already know, you can use VS Code extensions in Eclipse Theia applications. This enables you to enhance your Theia-based application with a pantheon of features from a huge ecosystem of available extensions available for VS Code, e.g. via the openVSX Registry. VS Code extensions specify the minimum version of VS Code that they require to run, to ensure compatibility. The Theia community release 2023-11 raises the compatibility level to 1.82, which is only one month behind VS Code and allows the vast majority of extensions to be installed in their latest versions.

Please check out the monthly release announcements of Theia to read more about the developments in the 2023-11 release. We are looking forward to the next Theia community release in November 2023!
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. …