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Tips to Updating and Upgrading with Eclipse

  • January 15, 2009
  • By Scott Nelson
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For the plug-ins that you did a URL-based installation of, you can find the URL by going to the Update dialog and using the Edit function.



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Figure 8: Select New Features



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Figure 9: Save the Location from the Edit Dialog

For those plug-ins installed manually from downloads, you will want to search the web for their home site. Some of these plug-ins will now have a URL-based installation. In either case, you will want to see whether there is a newer release for the version of Eclipse you are preparing to upgrade to.

Once you have collected your plug-ins to install, you will want to export your preferences from your current Eclipse installation from the File\Export General\Preferences menu. I suggest a naming convention for the resulting .epf file that reflects the use of the settings and the date created.



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Figure 10: Save Your Preferences By Exporting

The final step in preparing your migration is to back up your workspaces. I suggest you back up to removable media because some plug-ins take advantage of the OS to store preferences that will be lost during the upgrade process.

Steps to a Major Version Upgrade

Now, you are organized and prepared for migrating to the new version. First, unzip the installation to a new path. Next, run your manual plug-in installations. Most of these simply require unzipping the contents of the included plugins folder to the plugins path under your Eclipse installation. Some also have a features folder that requires the same process (unzip the contents to the features path under the Eclipse installation).

If you are taking the same path as I did, using the PDT project as a baseline for both PHP and Java development, your Java plug-ins won't show up yet. Although the Europa installation of the PDT package included the basic Java development tools, the Ganymede installation has none. You can add them easily with the software installation dialogs (refer to Figures 8 and 9) to add in the Eclipse J2EE options. At the completion of this installation, you will be prompted to re-start Eclipse, and the Java plug-ins will now be available.

Next, start Eclipse and run the URL-based installations through the same dialogs shown earlier in Figures 8 and 9. Some of these may require re-starting Eclipse. Once all of the plug-ins have been installed, import your preferences from the .epf file you exported earlier.





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