What is so great about Vaadin NetBeans plugin?

While working mainly with Eclipse in Vaadin R&D, I have personally used NetBeans from time to time to get some precious oversight on what other IDEs can do. Most often that has happened after banging my head to a wall with Eclipse issues :-). From what I have learned, NetBeans excels at least in Maven support and JPA features. The current stable release also already has a built-in support for Java 8.

Our very own Denis Anisimov has been working for Vaadin since 2012. In his previous job at Oracle he was tightly involved in NetBeans development. Although IDE integrations are not his main task here at Vaadin, it didn’t take too long for him to decide that something must be done for our a bit harsh NetBeans plugin. That little something has escalated into some amazing enhancements.

Overall, although my fingers really haven’t yet found the right keyboard shortcuts like with Eclipse, I really don’t know why Eclipse has such a strong lead among the two major open source Java IDE’s. Thanks to the recent work by Denis, I foresee a trend to turn to NetBeans, at least among Vaadin users.

So what is so great about Vaadin NetBeans plugin? Let me list some:

  • Amazing Vaadin add-on support: just by using code completion from your IDE, you’ll get updated dependencies and a widgetset. NetBeans is directly integrated to the Vaadin Directory and all its add-ons.
  • A versatile new widget wizard for add-on developers: the developer can choose their desired server side super type and class stubs from three different presets.
  • Based on a build system (Maven): the project is easy to build on a CI system, no need to handcraft a separate build script.
  • Based on a common build system (Maven): your team mate with another favorite IDE can use that as well without time consuming IDE configuration. Just import it to IntelliJ or Eclipse and start coding.
  • Based on Maven: I know some of you don’t exactly love it, but the fact is it is the most commonly used build system in JEE development. With NetBeans, you can actually use the Vaadin plugin with your Maven build real world projects as opposed to our current Eclipse plugin, that is designed for Eclipse WTP projects only.
  • Lots of other nice features

Our official Eclipse plugin still has some lead in e.g. the visual editor, but in case you are fed up with fighting with Eclipse or just need some alternation for your daily work, I suggest to give NetBeans a try. It is a serious contender for Eclipse.

We have a Webinar coming up about NetBeans and Vaadin together in building JavaEE applications. Sign up now below to join:

Matti TahvonenMatti Tahvonen is a Vaadin "R&D veteran" who has been working with our products for over 6 years. His current responsibility is to keep you up to date with latest and greatest Vaadin related technologies. You can follow him on Twitter – @MattiTahvonen

I'm trying the beta version of NetBeans 8.0 (Build 201401141042). No Vaadin plugin appears when I look at Tools > Plugins > Available Plugins (tab). I clicked the "Check for Newest" button as well, but still no "Vaadin" plugin in the list. Is it not yet possible to use the Vaadin plugin with this beta release of NetBeans?
Posted on 1/31/14 10:03 AM.
Hi, it certainly is, that is the setup I'm using. But you need to download and install it manually:

I guess there is a separate verification process for NB8. I can ask about this from NB team.

Posted on 1/31/14 10:40 AM in reply to Basil Bourque.
Great Work, but please i have been struggling with vaadin using maven in netbeans for a while now, my problem is that i can't find a way of adding my external jar files(libraries jar) to my vaadin project built with maven in netbeans, i have not been able to continue the project because of this problem.. i will be most grateful if any one can help me please.
Posted on 2/4/14 3:04 PM.

I assume you are wondering how to use jar files that are not available through any repositories?

There are two approaches, but I'd suggest the first one

Posted on 2/5/14 12:36 PM in reply to Jante Adebowale.
Thanks man, it worked perfectly well for me
Posted on 2/5/14 4:19 PM in reply to Matti Tahvonen.
Excelent work!
Any idea about when the Visual Editor is comming in the netbeans plugin ?
Posted on 3/4/14 1:19 AM.
We are about to start a larger effort to improve our VisualDesigner. Among that we'll try to improve its portability, so after that things should move faster on this topic.
Posted on 3/4/14 1:17 PM in reply to David Hofmann.
Hi Matti,

as your stated once, you would improve your VaadinDesigner for NetBeans. Do you have any news about the development? Thanks Kai
Posted on 9/25/15 11:46 AM in reply to Matti Tahvonen.
Its 2016 and we're still waiting for the Designer plugin for Netbeans.
Posted on 1/13/16 7:40 AM.