Windows: Setting the Eclipse Preferences

Eclipse has the notion of a workspace, which is a collection of one or more projects. Ptolemy II is a project.

(Optional): To add Eclipse to your start menu, go to the directory where Eclipse is installed, right click on eclipse.exe and select Pin to Start Menu.

Start up Eclipse by clicking on eclipse.exe.

When the "Workspace Launcher" window comes up, either stick with the default or choose a new directory. Note that the projects can be located outside of the workspace directory. One caveat is that Eclipse will not permit the project directory to be a parent of the workspace directory, so placing the workspace in a subdirectory such as the default location is best.
Click "OK" to create the workspace and open Eclipse.
Below is the Workspace Launcher Window:

Eclipse Workspace Launcher

The "Usage Data Upload" window may appear. The Eclipse developers use this facility to see how Eclipse is used. We recommend selecting "Turn UDC Off" and clicking "Finish".

The default configuration of Eclipse has some difficulties with Ptolemy II, so a few changes are necessary.

  1. Eclipse requires some customization to build Ptolemy II and to keep the Ptolemy II coding style. In the steps below, we outline changes to be made in the Eclipse Preferences window.
    Under Windows, the Eclipse Preferences window is invoked via Windows | Preferences.
    For each of the changes, hit Apply. When all the changes are done, hit OK, which will close the Eclipse Preferences Window.
  2. By default, Eclipse rebuilds a project when any change is made to a file. This will result in thousands of errors when Ptolemy II is first checked out, and during normal usage, can be annoying because of the pauses it creates. We suggest disabling this feature as follows:
    1. While still in the preferences window
      (Window | Preferences)
    2. Select General | Workspace
    3. Deselect Build automatically.
    4. Click Apply.
    Below is the General | Workspace window:

    Eclipse Preferemces General Workspace


  3. Ptolemy II source files are worked on by many people with different editors. Unfortunately, different text editors interpret tab characters differently, so it is best to use spaces rather than tabs.
    Sadly, the Eclipse developers have chosen to use tabs as spaces, so you must adjust the Eclipse Java Formatter if you plan on contributing code to the Ptolemy II tree.
    Also, it is best if files end with new line characters, so that we can run line oriented scripts on them.
    In addition, we currently do not want the Eclipse Formatter to format comments because some of the comments include ASCII art diagrams. We hope to change this policy in the future.
    We handle these changes together:
    1. While still in the preferences window
      (Window | Preferences)
    2. Go to Java | Code Style | Formatter and click New and go through the steps below, or click Import and select PtolemyIICodeStyle.xml (download here).
    3. In the "New Profile" Window, for the Profile name, enter "Ptolemy II" Under "Initialize settings with the following profile", select "Java Conventions [built-in]" (We use Java Conventions over the "Eclipse" setting because the Eclipse style uses tabs.) Then hit OK
    4. Under the "Indentation" tab, change the Tab policy to "Spaces only"
    5. Under the "New Lines" tab, select "at end of file"
    6. Under the "Comments" tab,
      unselect "Enable Javadoc comment formatting"
      unselect "Enable block comment formatting", otherwise the block comments that have <pre> ... <pre> get changed.
      unselect "Enable line comment formatting", otherwise the headers for public methods etc. get changed.
    7. Click OK.
    8. In the Preferences Window, click Apply.
  4. Eclipse has very good compiler error/warning. One of the warnings complains if a Serializable class does not have serialVersionUID declared. Since this warning is only useful if you are tightly managing serialization, we turn it off:
    1. While still in the preferences window
      (Window | Preferences)
      Expand Java | Compiler | Errors/Warning
    2. Under "Potential programming problems", change "Serializable class without serialVersionUID" to "Ignore"
    3. Under "Generic Types", change "Unchecked generic type operation" to "Ignore".
    4. Under "Generic Types", change "Usage of a raw type" to "Ignore".
    5. Click Apply. If you are prompted for a full rebuild, click Yes.
  5. The PtDoc Doclet in $PTII/doc/doclets/ requires tools.jar,
    While still in the preferences window:
    Java | Installed JREs, tools.jar must be added the external jars:
    1. Select the default JRE | Edit | Add External Jars.
    2. Browse to the path of your JDK for example:
      32 bit: c:\Program Files (x86) \Java\jdk1.6.0_23\lib
      64 bit: c:\Program Files\Java\jdk1.6.0_23\lib
    3. Hit Open, select tools.jar and then finish.
  6. Click OK in the Preferences window to apply all of the above changes.
  7. Proceed to the next step, Setting up the ptII project