Frequently Asked Questions

“An error occurred while collecting items to be installed” when trying to install

Try to turn off “Contact All Update Sites” while installing (Help → Install New software → Contact All Update Sites.) Please see

Installing Vaadin Designer for Eclipse worked, and it’s shown as Installed Software, but no menu item shows up.

Chances are Eclipse is running on an older version of Java. Please install at least Java 8. Note that you can have multiple versions installed, so make sure Eclipse uses the correct one. Note that this might also require editing eclipse.ini, which might still point to your old JDK. If all else fails, try uninstalling the old JDK.

If you get the operating system "busy cursor" (e.g "beachball" on OS X):

In rare cases, project settings become inconsistent when updating a plugin in Eclipse. Deleting the project settings seems to make everything work again.

The External Preview only shows a blank page / spinner / connection error.

The browser or device you’re using is unable to connect to your IDE.

  • Your computer (with the IDE) and the external browser / device must use the same network.

  • The network must allow connections between computers.

  • Your computed (firewall) must allow connections to the IDE (you might have been asked something like “Do you want Eclipse to accept incoming connections?”)

If you still have problems

  • The external browser or device might have a proxy set up that interferes.

  • If you are running a virtual machine (e.g VirtualBox, VMware) it might think it’s on a different network.

I have problems making layouts behave as I want/look different in application.

Vaadin Designer layouting behaviour matches that of the elements - it is a good idea to familiarize oneself with how their layouting works.

I use Linux and the Designer shows strange artifacts or does not render the Property view correctly.

The property view has some issues when rendering under SWT 3 and without Cairo. To improve the situation you can run eclipse with the following options to use GTK2 and Cairo.

env SWT_GTK3=0 GDK_NATIVE_WINDOWS=1 ./eclipse -Dorg.eclipse.swt.internal.gtk.cairoGraphics=true -Dorg.eclipse.swt.internal.gtk.useCairo=true

Also depending on your Linux distribution you might need to install libwebkitgtk-1.0-0 (Note: It needs to be a 1.x release, if you have a 2.x version install you still need to also install the 1.0 release!). To install use the following command:

sudo apt-get install libwebkitgtk-1.0-0

I use Linux and the Designer fails to start with the error IPCException: IPC process exited. Exit code: 127

The embedded browser used by Designer on Intellij requires libXss and libCrypto to be available. Ensure that you have them installed.

Also, on some Debian systems the libraries might be installed in the wrong location resulting in that the embedded browser cannot find them, in that case you can create a symlink to the right location. For example: -> ./x86_64-linux-gnu/

How can I download the Designer for offline installation?


The Eclipse runtime allows mirroring of update sites locally. Run the Eclipse executable with these parameters:

eclipse -nosplash -application org.eclipse.equinox.p2.artifact.repository.mirrorApplication -source -destination my-local-updatesite

After the command finishes the folder can be added as a local update site.


Designer for IntelliJ packages can be downloaded as zip files from and installed via the Install plugin from disk…​ option.

How do I do responsive views with the Designer?

Creating responsive views with Designer is pretty much the same question than “How to create responsive applications with Vaadin”. We offer a training course on responsive design for Vaadin 8, and have some resources online as well: For Vaadin 10, creating responsive applications is the same as for frontend applications, so any materials available online will be directly applicable. For example is a good resource to get started.

I have a perpetual license for Designer 2, but after updating to Designer 3 I’m asked for a Pro subscription?

Previously it was possible to either buy a Pro subscription, or purchase a single license for a specific major version of a product. From Vaadin 10 onwards, we have decided to discontinue the single licenses. In order to use Designer 3 after the trial period, a valid Pro subscription is required.

IDE’s often auto-upgrade plugins, it might be difficult to stay in the 2.x version. To prevent this follow these instructions:


1) Uninstall Designer 3 if you already updated

2) Remove the update site

3) Add the URL as an update site, and install Designer 2


1) Uninstall Designer 3 if you already updated

2) Add the URL as a repository and install Designer 2