Eclipse Callisto, the video, or when to push and when to pull
Tuesday 4 July 2006 @ 3:43 pm
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I’ve been way too busy doing probably important but not blogoductive things but today I found a few minutes to take a look at Elcipse Callisto and write some meaningful comments about it. At least, I thought …

In may, during the JavaOne, I saw callisto for the first time. The eclipse team proudly presented their plans. And during this session thay gave me the impression Callisto could be something worth to check out. Well, At the end of June, exactly like they promised (very cool, those release schedules and planning all done through IBM’s jazz), the time has come. It is Callisto time!

So Let’s go …. [quote]

  • First download either the Eclipse SDK or the Eclipse Platform Runtime Binaries.
  • You then need to use the update manager to load Callisto projects. See Eclipse Help for general information about using Update Manager.  
  • [/quote]

    Hummm …. so I need to download eclipse and after that I need to use the update manager to select what I want. Does not sound like a smooth download and go to me. I think the idea to combine several projects into one coordinated release cycle is a very good idea. And providing the flexability to select what you want is also a good idea. But how about the idea to productize the whole bunch in one download? I wanted to do a quick click through to write down some first impressions. Instead, I’ll restrict this blog entry by only watching the video. [offside discussion: Why does a product (yep, i know, it is not a product, wish it was a product) needs a video to tell me how to install it?? Since RoR has shown the world how convenient it is to use videos, every product that might need some better marketing, uses a video]

    Well, my review can be short. Why on earth does someone wants to select the ‘XSD Schema Infoset Model 2.2.0.v2′ ?? Lunatic :-) . Is there someone on this planet really planning to go the callisto way only to use this extension? Well, the eclipse team already predicted the amount of developers looking for this one feature is not worth counting so they provided the ’select required’ button. So, you select the feature you want and all depending feature are selected automatically. Great, I want Callisto to bring me all! Also possible. The selection model is tree driven. One select box, one button, some intermediate wizard screens and a restart. Well, if that is possible, why not provide that one click download?

    The actual question of course is not why we need videos nor what is wrong with the exotic selection of some deep down under package. The actual question is all about software distribution. It is push versus pull. Pull, just like the eclipse way but also like the linux way of packaging, is extremely useful for those who know what they are doing. Those who really need lunatic versions of lunatic packages. The only problem with pull is the lack of control on the distribution side. And that is where push comes in.

    On development teams it is sometimes important all developers are using the same tools. I especially used the word sometimes because I know this can be a delicate issue. But when you are in the situation this sometimes is a definately, pulling exotic packages from the Callisto discovery site might not be a very good idea. And that is exactly the reason why I want that one click download. (including restrictions on the update manager inside eclipse so I can throw away the video :-)

    — By Okke van 't Verlaat     PermaLink

    5 Responses to “Eclipse Callisto, the video, or when to push and when to pull”

    1. Sander Smeman Says:

      According to this blog entry Totally customized Eclipse Experience, anyone? it is possible to get a complete Eclipse installation, by simply selecting the features and plugins you want.

      I personally have installed the Callisto release and have no problems with it, but I count myself eclipse-minded ;) .

    2. Okke Says:

      Looks pretty cool. But when I selected callisto, it also includes the 3rd party W3C SAC Feature from But what the hack. Why didn’t the eclipse organisation provided such a service (instead of the lousy video)

      BTW, I call myself eclipse minded also, and I do not have any problems with callisto. But just the idea of providing a video with installation instructions is way to Tell-sell for me :-)

    3. Emil van Galen Says:

      For projects it might be a good idea to use a local update site with only the plugins you will actually use in your projects. This way it is also very easy to update the eclipse installation of all your team members (using the pull mechanism) ;-)

    4. Rashmi Says:

      Hi Okke,

      Sorry, but I am going to go off topic here. I saw your comment on another blog where you mentioned you were trying to get JAAS working with SAP WAS. I am trying the same thing and we ran into a lot of class not found exceptions. After a lot of pain filled days, we figured out that sap was using the context class loader _only_ for loading the login module. After changing the thread’s classloader, we got moving.

      I just wanted to know your experience with the same. I would really really appreciate a reply to this - We are in a big soup and try as I might I could not find any useful help on this.

      Thank you so much in advance.


    5. Jesper de Jong Says:

      Having to use the update manager to get all of the Callisto stuff is indeed not very user-friendly, but it’s also not that difficult… the good thing is you don’t have to do it on every PC you want to install the new Eclipse on, because you can just zip up your Eclipse directory and unzip it on another PC.

      Have you seen this one: A Realistic Look at the State of Eclipse


      Ok, so Eclipse doesn’t have the same sexy, out-of-the-box appeal that some other IDEs deliver. Environments like NetBeans look great, have smooth functionality (for the most part), and are wrapped in a pretty package. If we look only at pink and lace, NetBeans beats Eclipse. But the question is, does NetBeans have the power and steam behind it to take it to the next level of adoption, and more importantly, should Eclipse follow Sun’s footsteps by focusing on end user out-of-the-box experience instead of the less glamorous platform or ingredients inside? The short answer is, “HELL” no.

      I don’t agree with that - I think it is important to have a good out-of-the-box experience, as a use of Eclipse you just want something that’s easy to install and that works immediately, and you don’t want to have to tweak a lot before you can start using it.

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