Yesterday’s post was in response to a question from Anders Nawroth of the Neo4J effort, and today’s post is no different. On Tuesday (or maybe it was Monday), Anders asked the neo4j-users list whether it made sense to build the neo4j eclipse plugin with Maven.
I have looked into building Neoclipse using Maven, but at the moment I’m not convinced there are more advantages then disadvantages in this case. Building Eclipse plugins and products has quite many quirks. With increasing use of product configuration options, the number of build quirks increases as well. There seems to be no really automated build system for Eclipse plugins/products, even when using maven you have to install and update the dependencies manually (the Eclipse artifacts are not deployed to a maven repository).
Sonatype is busily working to address these gaps, and we already have some solutions you can use to start building your Eclipse plugins in Maven. Igor Fedorenko has been working on Tycho and Maven to create a system to facilitate OSGi and Eclipse development in Maven, and m2eclipse is currently built using Tycho. To prove that Tycho is a viable path for build the Neoclipse plugin, I took some time yesterday to generate Maven pom.xml files with Tycho and build an update site for Neoclipse. Continue reading