**THIS DOCUMENT IS A DRAFT ** Feel free to read it, comment on it, but do NOT assume this is an approved plan of action.

This is a summary of steps that need to be taken before we can include Plugin Portal (PP) update center into standard NetBeans FCS build out of the box. Whether it is selected by default or not is a separate question.

The motivation is to let the users play with modules contributed by community. To set the expectation correctly, we cannot test and fix all of these modules to perfection. But we should take steps to avoid frustration created by flaky modules that would discourage users from trying more modules or even from using NetBeans at large. It should not hurt to try modules. We need to avoid modules that cannot even be installed, completely break the IDE beyond a point of recovery, cannot be disabled or uninstalled, etc. The rest can be left on users filing issues, providing ratings and comments, etc., on plugins portal web site, perhaps in future directly from IDE.

Minimal Quality Criteria

  • Do not offer modules for download until the tests described below were performed on it. If a module fails these tests exclude it from module catalog temporarily until it gets fixed.
  • Every module must have a license to make "terms of use" clear (#109632)
  • Every module must have a description and an author
  • Only offer modules targeted for the specific version of IDE. We need to generate module catalog with correct version numbers and test modules (see below) with corresponding versions of IDE. (#114118)
  • Verify that all dependencies of modules are met. A module available on PP can have dependencies on other modules from PP or modules from NetBeans update center(s).
  • Verify that a module can be installed and the IDE works w/o exceptions after restart (run basic tests). It's probably best to test installation of all modules at once to help to prevent clashes among modules.
  • Verify that a module can be disabled and uninstalled (two separate tests) and the IDE works after restart (run basic tests).

Also useful

  • In Plugins dialog make it easy to visually distinguish modules from plugin portal from modules from NetBeans update center

Required Plugin Portal Features

to be able to perform the minimal checks we will need several features of PP

  • Distinguish between active modules (which satisfy minimal quality criteria) and temporarily non active modules.
  • New modules will be in non active state until they are tested.
  • Module test can be confirmed by rating from users. Ideally logged in users can only rate the module. When rating is at level X rated by Y users then it is made Active, IZ #114358.
  • Admin will be able to change the state manually, e.g. based on failed tests.
  • Automatically (daily) or on request generate UC catalog for various versions of NetBeans (5.5, 5.5.1, 6.0) from active modules.

Going Forward

NetBeans 6.0 Plugin Portal Update Center Plan Draft

NetBeans 6.0 Plugin Portal Update Center Plan Final

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