Archive for May, 2008

Version Control : Netbeans beats ’em all

Although most of the time I do sole-development….I still use version control a lot…my tool of choice is mercurial and i’ve been using it for quite a while now….i do all my version controls at the command line…and I am quite happy…or so I thought….Sincerely I dont know when the version control was introduced to netbeans…but I was perusing through the menu and I saw it..I played with it a little and more than I expected Netbeans blew my mind…

First every of the commands I issue at cmd prompt are now visually represented and all I have to do now is click and go.

Next…My outputs are now by far better than what it used to be…the outputs are now well arranged so I dont have to look for where what is and what is not.

And this is what blew my mind…Now as I write my code I can visually see what has changed since my last commit, what has been deleted, what has been added etc….the developement team of Netbeans had really done a good job..the colouring scheme is superb too..like red arrow points to where line has been deleted…green stripe says new lines have been added…blue says lines have been changed…pointing the mouse also gives u a tool-tip of what the color means….and again visually I can revert these changes by click of a mouse…

Finally, Netbeans supports three of the most popular versioning systems, Mercurial, CVS and Subversion….

If you take versioning serious in your development process, you just need to try out the versioning system built into Netbeans..and as usual..there is no Rocket Science involved in using it…it takes only a few minutes even if you have not used version control before

Netbeans….My IDE of Choice

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Code Chat Share..With Netbeans…coding can’t be easier

There’s this cool feature in Netbeans I just discovered…it is called Collaboration…it comes as a plugin. So what does it do.

First I go to the plugins page and I install the Collaboration plugin…just 4MB.
Next I see a new Menu appear on the Menu bar called Collaboration in between versioning and tools

I click on the Menu and it gives me options to Login or end my session if I am already logged in
Next I click Login and I have a side-bar where I can Manage my accounts.

I click on the Manage Accounts button and I have a new window where I can

  1. Register for a new collaboration account with share.java.net
  2. Register for a new collaboration account with another collaboration server
  3. Access my already created account on any collaboration serve

Any one who can install netbeans should be able to follow the simple steps to create a new account

After your account has been created your side bar is update to reflect your account settings. You can change any of these when you click on Manage Accounts button. if you are satisfied..click login
By now I guess all your friends have also done the same thing…so how do I add my friends to my contact…or better still how do two developers working on the same project collaborate real time without actually having to open an Instant Messaging Application? Some times ago I wrote about how Netbeans has helped me to eliminate most of the other GUIs that floods my screen…and now I have only one unified GUI…now its helping me to eliminate multiple Instant Messengers too……life is beautiful with netbeans

Now right click on Contacts in the collaboration side bar and select Add Contact..type your friends first name and click find..if your friend is logged in…he will show on the open and you can add him..a message is sent to your friend too to add you….you have fufilled the first step to real time collaboration

Next right-click on your friend’s ID and click on Start Conversation…a new tab is opened for you where you can chat, share files and even share a whole project!

Now click on a file..drag it to the window that says Drag files here to share them and blam!…you have started sharing…your friend at the other end recieves the file(s) you dropped…..this way you can drop a whole project here and the guy at the other end gets it……He can also do something really crazy at this point…he can remotely build, clean, and run this project

Go try out this cool tool…you’ll be glad you did….I did something with this tool…At a time I have a server setup that I manage remotely…most times when I make changes…i do it on my development system and upload…

What I did now was to install Netbeans on my Server and upload all the project files to the server…Next I created another account for the server on Collaboration and then I do all the editing I need to do directly on the server….all I did was shared the project files and that is all…whenever I want to run the project..I connect to the server using VNC Viewer to see the output.

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