Eclipse on Windows 7 for Development

By Rob Scovell, in , posted: 25-Jan-2012 08:13

It all started when Polly and I came back from the supermarket and realised we'd forgotten to get some vegetables we needed. So we got back into the car and nipped out for just 15 minutes to Garden Fresh. When we got back, while walking down the driveway, I noticed a blue T shirt. "Odd," I thought. I picked it up and looked round and saw a youngish lad legging it out of the gate and down the road. Then I saw the bathroom window. "Ohhhhh Bugger ...," I thought. The git had taken my Macbook and my new Ubuntu laptop, as well as my iPhone. Fortunately he hadn't had time to grap Polly's laptop so we still had some computing power left in the house ...

The insurance company (AA) were great. Really great. No quibbling, no quoting of fine print, and a cash settlement that got me back up and running ...

I had been starting to become jaded about Apple computers after 10 years of being a devoted OS X user. I was starting to wonder what you *really* got for the extra cash you paid for them. It used to be that the hardware lasted much longer before the first telltale signs of decay but since they moved production to China, they've pretty much had the same life as any other computers. So, I came home with a shiny new touch-screen Windows 7 Dell all-in-one beauty with 6GB of RAM and set it up. I was planning to install Ubuntu on it ... but I thought I'd play around with Windows 7 for a bit first ...

Now, I always seem to have a need to go into Windows from time to time ... my clients often have some Windows-only or more specifically, Internet Explorer-only thing that I need to attend to. In the past, I ran Windows XP in VirtualBox on the Macbook and it was enough for my needs. However, while I was playing around with Windows 7 (which, surprisingly, I liked ...) I thought, "Hang on. Instead of running Windows in a VirtualBox why don't I run Ubuntu in a VirtualBox on Windows!" So that is now what I have set up: Ubuntu Server LTS. Which brings me to the main point of this article.

I had used Eclipse on sparingly in the past because it seemed such a bloated memory-hog compared with the lightfooted tools I preferred to use. However, I decided to give it another go, in the absence of my usual tools on Windows 7. With my 6 GB of RAM, Eclipse is beautifully smooth. I don't miss my old tools at all. I also don't miss either the Mac OS X interface or the rather amateurish Ubuntu one. (I've always found Linux UIs a bit cringe-worthy to be honest, even though Unity is way ahead of what went before ... ) I still develop LAMP stuff obviously ... so I use putty to ssh into the Ubuntu VirtualBox.

I use Gmail as my email client and Google Docs so I have no need for any MS Office suite software. I haven't even installed Open/Libre Office. Skype was pre-installed. The only non-development applications I have installed are Picasa and Chrome. 

... and all because of some forgotten veggies ...

Goodbye Apple! It was nice knowing you but it is time to move on! Oh and RIP Steve Jobs!

Other related posts:
Google Desktop for Mac ... a Health Warning!
Disk magnets

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