NetBeans 6.0 Plugin Portal Update Center Plan - Draft

Changes to be completed for the Plugin Portal to meet the requirements for the Plugin Portal Update Center to be included in NetBeans 6.0.

Required Attributes

Make the following attributes required when the plugin owner is add/changing a plugin.

  • License Text
  • Author
  • Description


There are two aspects of versioning. First there are plugins that work with certain versions of NetBeans. This will be referred to as NetBeans Versions. Second, for each NetBeans Version a plugin can have multiple versions. This is referred to as the Plugin Version. The discussion below refers to Plugin Versioning.

For example, a plugin might be verified to work with NetBeans Version 6.0. That same plugin might have Plugin Versions 1.0, 1.1, and 1.2. For each Plugin Version, all of the meta-data could be different.

  • The Plugin Portal will maintain multiple versions of a plugin.
  • Questions to be answered:
  • What will the plugin authors be able to do with each version?
    • Maintain separate meta-data for each version? If so, which meta-data will be separate, all or some?
      • [[[__JK:__No.None. | [__JK:__ No. None.]]
      • [[DB: After further explaining the term version above, I think we need to maintain different meta-data for different versions.
      • [[TN: Agree with DB. The update of a plugin may change description or maybe license.
      • [[TN+JK: The user has to be able to have more versions of one plugin on plugin portal, each of them separately maintainable and with checkboxes (possibly) to be published on update centers of various NetBeans versions.
      • [[[__JK:__Yes,PleaseSeeOurUIProposalBelow. | [__JK:__ Yes, please see our UI proposal below.]]
    • Remove a version?
      • [[[__JK:__Yes,ByUncheckingAppropriateVersionCheckboxI.e.WorksWith:[[ | [__JK:__ Yes, by unchecking appropriate version checkbox i.e. <tt>Works with: [[ ]] 5.5 [[[x | [x]] 5.5.1]
      • [[DB: Again, since we are talking about Plugin Versions, we are talking about removing, for example, plugin version 1.1. I think we need to provide this functionality.
      • [[DB: Here's a follow-on question. How many plugin versions will we allow and how will we clean up old plugin versions?
      • [[TN: The update center catalog may contain more versions of the same module I believe. Only the newest one will be displayed in Plugin Manager either as an update to an already installed older version or as a new plugin available if not installed yet.
      • [[[__MM:__ThisIsntClearToMe.WhatIfIHaveAPluginDevelopedOriginallyAgainstNB6.0AndWellReleaseNB7.0DithTonsOfIncompatibleChanges.DoINeedToRewriteMyPluginForNB6.0CatalogAsWellThereWouldBeVeryProbablyFewVersionsOfTheSamePluginAvailableDachForTheAppropriateCatalog. | [__MM:__ This isn't clear to me. What if I have a plugin - developed originally against NB 6.0 and we'll release NB7.0 - with tons of incompatible changes. Do I need to rewrite my plugin for NB 6.0 catalog as well ? There would be very probably few versions of the same plugin available - each for the appropriate catalog. ]]
      • [[TN+JK: Again as above, more versions of one plugin exist, each of them can be published on update centers of various NetBeans versions.
      • [[[__JK:__Yes,PleaseSeeOurUIProposalBelow. | [__JK:__ Yes, please see our UI proposal below.]]
    • Show changes for each version?
      • [[[__JK+TN:__Yes,BecauseOneBinaryContainsNewFeaturesForAllCheckedVersions,Right | [__JK+TN:__ Yes, because one binary contains new features for all checked versions, right?]]


  • The Plugin Portal will support the Plugin Verification Process explained below.

Verification Process

Only verified plugins will show up in the NetBeans 6 Plugin Portal Update Center.


  1. The plugin owner or PP reviewer requests that a plugin gets verified by checking appropriate checkbox.
  2. 9 PP testers get notified via private mailing list to verify the plugin.
  3. They download the plugin from PP, verify it complies with PPUC Quality Criteria and discuss plugin quality.
  4. Each PP reviewer is expected to say either Go or NoGo when s/he is done with the review by checking appropriate checkbox.
  5. If 5 or more PP reviewers say Go, the plugin is approved to live PPUC right away.
  6. If 1 PP reviewer says NoGo, consensus must be reached i.e. either the complainer says Go too or the plugin must be fixed.
  7. The plugin gets automatically published on the appropriate PPUC when 5 PP reviewers say Go and nobody says NoGo.
  8. If NoGo shows up later for already published plugin, it is immediately withdrawn from the PPUC.

Plugin Portal is expected to provide necessary web based voting interface for PP reviewers. It could be something like this:

Community Involvement

  • A team of community volunteers will be chosen to verify plugins: PP reviewers
  • If a PP reviewer becomes inactive in verifying plugins, the PP reviewer will be replaced.
  • The verification process and the team of PP reviewers will be owned and led by the technical community manager (Jirka).

Update Center in NetBeans 6.0 Beta 2

The Plugin Portal Update Center will be included in NetBeans 6.0 Beta 2. The actual update center will be either be "empty" or include a couple of plugins manually entered.

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