Hi Ralph,

One of the responses that indicated you should whether you need an IDE at
all is a very good question. If that response does not intrigue you then
you should read the Java IDE product comparisons that can be found in just
about any half-reputable Java / Software development magazine to get a bang-for-buck
and matchup of features chart. These devices are reasonably unbiased (ok,
ok, you may disagree..) if you don't just want an opinion.

But otherwise, you've asked a pretty broad question and you'll get a bunch
of broad opinionated (opinions are good if they say and you listen to why
they hold that opinion) answers.

Ok here goes, it depends (knew I was going to say that didn't you...).

Basically if your company doesn't have a 'thou shalt use X' dogma then use
whatever you like (I mean 'individual' choice, not just whatever). You should
always be in a position to say how much dependancy you have on any development
environment you have established.

Some will use JBuilder, Visual Age or Forte (to name a few).

Many (many) others will use a decent (and often free / near-free) text/code
editor like Textpad and build using other tools like a Java SDK (pick your
flavour, Sun, IBM, etc) and ANT (to build the project).

And by 'it depends' I also mean what do you want out of the IDE? Nobody can
or should (my opinion) memorise the oodles of Java packages (libraries) out
there so nobody does. Instead they rely on the API docs (easily downloaded
for local reference) or they rely on the IDE to prompt them (with for instance
all the parameter combinations for a given method). This is an example of
one of the handy IDE features.

As another example JBuilder (for one) has features to assist you with building
EJBs if you're building that type of application. The matching bracket feature
in Forte is also handy. You might also want to know what level of integration
the IDE has with other packages. For instance does the IDE integrate with
a model tool (such as Rational Rose) and does the IDE integrate with a version
control system such as CVS, PVCS, ClearCase or SourceSafe. Does the IDE integrate
with an issue management system (such as ClearQuest or Tracker).

Choosing an IDE (if you want / have to use one) should be prefaced by you
listing all of your software development practice requirements in a checklist
and then comparing products in your purchase domain against your requirements.
Nobody said it wouldn't take time but then it is you (and your company) that
will have to spend time and money using the IDE/non-IDE environment.

Here's a link to a list of Java IDE's:

An one for an article about choosing an enterprise-wide IDE:

Good luck...


"Ralph Carrasquillo" <Ralph_Carrasquillo@ninewest.com> wrote:
>Hi everyone!
>Our company is trying to determine which EDI to use and why. Our choices
>include Jdeveloper, JBuilder, and Forte. Our back end is Oracle 8. Im not
>sure at this point which is the most commonly used anymore I thought a while
>back that JBuilder was very common and Ive checked out the current version
>5 studio.
>Any input at all would be appreciated...
>Thank You,
>Ralph Carrasquillo