Lots of people use Eclipse. We would like to make it very easy for them to try out NetBeans for a day.

Many of these people will want to try NetBeans on real code, not just toy projects; and we want them to be able to choose to continue using NetBeans some or all of the time, even while some of their colleagues may still be using Eclipse.

If these people have existing projects, they might use Maven or some other system that NetBeans can recognize directly, but often they will just have Eclipse project metadata. This consists at a minimum of .project and .classpath files, sometimes other files, and projects may live inside a workspace with additional information.

Currently we can "import" some very simple Eclipse projects/workspaces (only elementary classpath information is understood). This makes a new NetBeans Ant project based on the snapshot of the Eclipse metadata at the time of import. There is no option for synchronization with later changes in the Eclipse metadata, and there is no Java EE support.

This one-pager is for doing a better job of the import, but that is all. Contrast NativeEclipseProjectsOnePager for direct support of Eclipse projects.


Eclipse projects can have various natures supplied by plug-ins. Supporting them all is impossible; supporting even many will be a challenge. Natures might add implicit classpath entries, builders, and much more. We need to determine which project-related plug-ins are critical to support.


Obviously Eclipse is not a "competitor" in this space (and to my knowledge it makes no effort to import metadata from other IDEs).

IDEA does a passable job of opening Eclipse projects (you need to go through a special import wizard). It adds some IDEA-specific metadata files, but can share .classpath. For this one-pager we would like to do roughly as well.


Probably one full-time developer for a release cycle to do priority features. David Konečný is knowledgeable about Java EE and will likely implement these portions; Jesse Glick will likely implement improvements to the existing Java SE import. The original import was written by Martin Krauskopf, improved by Radek Matouš, and is currently being maintained by Milan Kubec.


For 6.5, otherwise TBD.

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