[student’s article]

In this article we will find out which IDE is the best for programming with Java.

Eclipse vs Netbeans

What are IDEs?

IDEs or Integrated development environments are programs that are used to compile and debug our codes. Each IDEs have different features, characteristics, and advantages that can severely affect the user’s workflow. Of course, when choosing an IDE, we want to choose an IDE with the best feature, the most efficient compiler, and easy to understand interface. We will be comparing two popular Java IDEs which are Netbeans and Eclipse.

What is Eclipse?

Starting with Eclipse, Eclipse was developed in the 1990s, and designed to handle text editing, compiling, and debugging. Customization is its strong point. While running Eclipse out of the box, it can feel a bit plain and bare, but once you add the extensive libraries of plugins and extensions, it will provide you with a much better experience. Eclipse is more than enough to handle big projects, although the learning curve is a bit steep.

What is Netbeans?

Netbeans started off as a student project to create an IDE, it is marketed officially in 1999. Unlike Eclipse, Netbeans is ready to go out of the box, and it is very beginner friendly and simple to use; the learning curve for Netbeans is also isn’t as steep as Eclipse. You don’t need as many plugins as Eclipse to make the experience better. Netbeans is also open source with a large community to help you when you have difficulties working on your project. However, Netbeans isn’t designed to handle projects as big as Eclipse can handle, as it is for lighter and simpler projects, which is why it is often used to introduce Java to beginner.

Which one is better?

So which one is the better IDE? It depends, if you are a beginner trying to learn Java, it might be better to start off with the simpler IDE which is Netbeans, however, if you are planning to work on bigger projects then Eclipse is more suited and capable. Both of these IDEs are very good, and there really is no wrong choice here, so choose what is more suited to your needs. 

written by: Maverick Fernando Ong (IMT ’22)