Best IDE? save java.....

Hello, i work on a server side project in servlets and we are very happy with what Java provides.

We are thinking about developing a client server application but we r not sure what technology to use. I am pushing Java but there are groups that want to use Delphi because of the ease in development where you could have the drag and drop features, form features, all visual basic-ish coding techniques. We need to get started on this soon and deliver even sooner.

Using Java, I have not found a single IDE that allows the kind of stuff I mentioned above. I would like to hear your opinions on what kind of advantages having a client/server java application would provide in terms of development, deployment etc.

Please let me know.

Thanks in advance.

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JBuilder is most like Delphi, as it is written by Borland
 My favourite one is JCreator: unfortunatelly only available on Windows platform. For Linux I use Forte.
tpass001Author Commented:
usage is fine, we use what we have to to get the job done.

My question is more in the sense of, what IDE provides the maximum functionlity that provides quick prototyping, easy drag and drop features of buttons, radio buttons, check boxes etc.

also whats important to me now is what Ide provides easy database integration. example, point to database, provide jdbc driver, it gets ddl definitions and then u choose what fields u want, how u want them arranged.

dont we all want all this, just the way, good old visual basic was (even though it sucked)


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I use IntellijIDE (
It's very easy and helps me while i code...
It don't allow drag and drop on your form's - or I've never used at least..
Can you hear me tp?

JBuilder gives you all you are asking for...

And if you fork out the £2800 for the enterprise version, it gives you more...
To tpass001,

I dont think there is any single IDE that collaborates all the features as you mentioned, because Java is much more an open standard than old VB stuff and also it involves more advanced programming techniques than Delphi or VB in the past decade.

However, you could find one IDE that is wonderful on drag-and-drop GUI programming, such as JBuilder as mentioned by TimYates. If you get the Enterprise edition of JBuilder, you would also be enabled for remote debugging on server side code. If you want the best visualizer of DB forms, etc., you could consider Toads (for Oracle only) or DBVisualizer (for any database, as long as you have the JDBC driver to register to it). If you want quick and easy programming and also you might handle XML etc., IntelliJ IDE is a very powerful IDE to consider. Also, if you use or consider to use Jarkarta Ant or CVS as the build management tool to help organize your project, IntelliJ is one of the best IDE candidates to consider, since it integrates both seamlessly.

Other IDE you might consider is called Eclipse, an open source project.

All in all, one of the good features of Java tools is that you could always download a trial version of individual and familiarize yourself a bit to see if it fits your needs or preference. If so, you could purchase it later; if not, just uninstall it. In addition, as same with the fact that Visual Studio has become a suite IDE rather than a single application, Java development needs several tools or application to work together. So far, there may not exist a big player to integrate all the features as you mentioned in one, but its day would come soon.


Eclipse (as far as I know) does not have a graphical form builder in its ide...
CodeGuide from
though doesnt support Visual Designing, other than that it does beat JBuilders ass :)
So...other than the fact that it omits one of the requirements? ;-)
I think the following are the Best IDE to work with.

1 - Forte for Java,
2 - JDeveloper

Forte for Java (SUN ONE Studio) has 3 versions Community Edition, Enterprise Edition and Mobile Edition, each of them can be download but only the Community Edition has unrestricted use. They have many options but requires a Lot memory.
JDeveloper can be downloaded from, requires more memory to work (my machine is a P4 with 256MB) but also has a lot of features.

Eclipse is lighter, but the lack of features like graphical form builder make it almost unusable
JBuilder is the best java IDE I have used so far.  Forte For Java is also really nice.  Both were based on the Delphi IDE technology developed by Borland.  JBuilder is actually more complete and robust than Delphi, whereas Forte is almost a knockoff copy.

(Side note: Forte for Java was developed when Sun hired three programmers from Borland's Delphi team who said, essentially, "Java's neat, but it needs a good IDE."  The rest is history.)

.NET was actually architected by the same person that architected Delphi, and he says that Delphi has done for years everything that .NET will do in the future.  It's not surprising that VB coding looks "Delphi'ish"  :o)

Delphi itself is the Borland environment for Object Pascal, so if you specifically want a Java IDE then Delphi isn't for you.  On the other hand, if you just want a good robust environment for coding C/S apps Delphi is really good.  Don't make the mistake I have seen some companies make of assuming that a good functional prototype creadted by Delphi's RAD tools is the same as a serious enterprise scale app.  There's a lot of work yet to be done to get teh scalability and performance required of good apps.

Many key Java technologies have found their way into the Delphi world, the same way the Delphi IDE found its way into the Java world.  For example, DUnit is a knockoff of JUnit.

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Oh yes ... Delphi supports SOAP and CORBA, plus COM, DCOM, .NET, and sockets technologies.  You can write the client and server side apps in either Delphi or Java and they can talk to each other because they support standards.

Delphi apps are limited to the x86 platform (Windows or linux), and the threading and communications model is very different than Java's.  If you are used to coding for Java then there is a serious learning curve ahead of you to get the most out of Delphi.
Try out 'Visual Age for Java (Enterprise Edition)' by IBM. Its one of the few good IDEs that provide good graphical forms for easy drag and drop options, and near to accurate layouts.
We use IntelliJ IDEA too. It's very good for server-side code, including JSPs and Struts. It is very much aimed at coding rather than GUI stuff though, but that's OK because it's what most programmers do most of the time.

It's the best development IDE for any language in my opinion, and I've used a fair few in my time!
tpass001Author Commented:
trying to use JBuilder Enterprise, lets see if it works.

Thanks all for the answers
Didn't I say JBuilder 4 minutes after you posted this question?

 Yeap... fair's fair... Tim suggested JBuilder first.
Tim - I'm not greedy, just verbose.  I only offered supplemental historical information.

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