Eclipse to Update Callisto

The Eclipse Foundation will deliver a maintenance release to the Eclipse platform and update the Callisto 10-project release at the end of September.

The Eclipse Foundation plans to deliver in September a maintenance release of the Eclipse platform, as well as an update to its 10-project coordinated release known as Callisto.

According to organization members and the Web site, on Sept. 29 the Eclipse Foundation is scheduled to deliver Eclipse 3.2.1, a maintenance release of the platform, along with a maintenance release of the Callisto projects.

"The 10 Callisto projects have agreed to do two coordinated maintenance releases," said an Eclipse wiki page describing the coordinated release schedule. "The first one in the fall (9/29/2006), and the second in the winter (approximately first of February 2007)," the wiki page said.

And, as with the Callisto coordinated release, these maintenance releases will be a voluntary coordination of the projects involved, Eclipse officials said.

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"The projects are planning to do a maintenance release at the end of September," said Ian Skerrett, director of marketing at Eclipse. "The plan is for each project just to include big fixes, no new features."

Tim Wagner, a Seattle-based senior manager for BEA Systems WebLogic Workshop product and leader of the WTP (Web Tools Platform) project in Eclipse, said the next release of WTP will be 1.5.1, which is slated to ship on Sept. 29.

"All of Eclipse is going to do a maintenance release on Friday, Sept. 29," Wagner said. And, in particular, for the projects in the Callisto release, this maintenance drop will be an opportunity "to fix any bugs coming out of the Callisto release," he said.

Callisto, named after a moon of Jupiter, shipped June 30, featuring 10 Eclipse projects that shipped simultaneously. It was a first for Eclipse, although the foundation plans to do the same thing again next year around the same time in June, said Mike Milinkovich, executive director of the Eclipse Foundation. That release will be known as Europa, another moon of Jupiter.

The projects in the Callisto release are BIRT (Business Intelligence and Reporting Tools), CDT (C/C++ IDE), DTP (Data Tools Platform), EMF (Eclipse Modeling Framework), GEF (Graphical Editing Framework), GMF (Graphical Modeling Framework), Eclipse, Eclipse TPTP (Test and Performance Tools Platform), Eclipse WTP (Web Tools Platform) and VE (Visual Editor).

In addition to the WTP, examples of some of the projects that will upgrade with the 3.2.1 release of Eclipse include the DTP projects, with Version 0.9.1 being released on Sept. 29. DTP released Version 0.9 with Callisto. BIRT 2.1 was also released with Callisto, with BIRT 2.1.1 expected in the fourth quarter, synchronized and tested with Eclipse Platform 3.2.1, the BIRT Web site said. In addition, TPTP 4.2.1 is scheduled for release on Sept. 29, based on Eclipse 3.2.1.

While the WTP 1.5.1 release will be primarily a bug fix and maintenance release, the next major release of WTP—Version 2.0—will come in Europa, Wagner said.

WTP 2.0 will feature enhanced Java Enterprise Edition 5 support, inclusion of the Eclipse AJAX (Asynchronous JavaScript and XML) Toolkit Framework project, support for the Eclipse Dali Java Persistence APIs project, JavaServer Faces tooling and other things, Wagner said.

And Sybase recently donated a visual design editor to the project. The technology is a visual designer for JavaServer Pages and HTML, Wagner said. This designer will be in WTP 2.0 as well, he said.

Meanwhile, although "Callisto is a major event and an important piece in the maturation cycle" for Eclipse, "in Europa well see more focus on ease of use and out-of-the-box installation," Wagner said.

At the Eclipse council meetings in Chicago earlier this summer, the board decided to set up a usability panel to study the usability issues surrounding Eclipse and to make recommendations on how to improve ease of use and the "out-of-the-box experience" for Eclipse users, Wagner said.

In addition, Wagner said the foundation is making the Eclipse Web site more useful and friendly for users.

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