Eclipse 4.2 Under Fire
Eclipse 4.2 Under Fire
Written by Kay Ewbank   
Friday, 14 September 2012

Eclipse users continue to raise concerns about the poor performance of Eclipse 4.2 compared to the earlier Eclipse 3.8.

Eclipse 4.2 (Juno) is the subject of  lots of negativity from  the Eclipse community. When we first reported on its release at the beginning of July we also posted a user's comment that concluded:

 ... going back to Indigo before I kill myself

At that time we assumed it was just teething troubles, but no - many users have continued to comment that the newer version is inferior to Eclipse 3.8 (Indigo)

The debate has come into the open with a message from Thomas Hallgren, who founded Cloudsmith and is a well known fan of Eclipse.  On the mailing list, Hallgren expressed his surprise that Eclipse 4.2 is much slower than Eclipse 3.8, saying:

“The 3.8 platform is much MUCH faster. It boots faster, it closes windows faster, it shows menus faster, etc. It also seems to consume less memory and be less buggy. The way things stand right now, there's just no way I'll switch back to 4.2!”

There is also the fact that there is no real PHP support in the latest version. Many developers are switching to NetBeans and alternatives or sticking with 3.8 for PHP programming.

Hallgren suggested that the Eclipse Foundation should consider offering Eclipse 3.8 rather than Eclipse 4.2 as the preferred download. The responses to Hallgren's post have uncovered the fact that lack of resources and developers meant performance-related regression testing and code coverage analysis was omitted before Eclipse 4.2 was released and that the Eclipse Foundation has struggled to gain sufficient resources since IBM cut down on its sponsorship of Eclipse.

Bringing the issue out into the open does seem to be having positive effects, however. Mike Milinkovich of the Eclipse Foundation has indicated that more hardware and resources will be found, and Google's Open Source Programs Office has also promised a contribution of $20,000 to help fund the Eclipse performance test lab.



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