JetBrains Joins Team Tools Battle

The maker of elite Java development tools enters the team tools space to compete with the big boys. Meanwhile, the Eclipse holdout says it will remain independent and continue to innovate.

JetBrains, which has maintained a cultlike following as the Java integrated development environment for discerning developers, is making a move into the team development space with a new, open team management system for developers.

In addition to the new team management system, known as JetBrains TeamCity, JetBrains is introducing a new version of its core IDE platform, IntelliJ IDEA 6.0. The Prague, Czech Republic-based company is scheduled to announce the release of beta versions of these products on July 26.

Sergey Dmitriev, JetBrains co-founder and chief executive, said JetBrains IntelliJ IDEA 6.0 and TeamCity are designed to run independently, but also to be able to integrate tightly when they are used together.

New features and enhancements in IntelliJ IDEA 6.0 include support for EJB (Enterprise JavaBeans) 3.0 and Persistence Units, along with assistance for migrating code from earlier EJB versions; enhanced Java Enterprise Edition support, including JSP (JavaServer Pages) improvements, support for JSF (JavaServer Faces) and the Struts framework; new Web development features including support for JavaScript, AJAX (Asynchronous JavaScript and XML), HTML, CSS (Cascading Stylesheets) and XML; and a new GWT Studio plug-in for developing applications using GWT (Google Web Toolkit).

/zimages/4/28571.gifClick here to read eWEEK Labs review of IntelliJ IDEA 5.0.

Other new IntelliJ IDEA 6.0 features include support for additional application servers, such as BEAs WebLogic 9 and IBMs WebSphere; an enhanced GUI designer with support for Suns Swing and third-party layout managers; a new team collaboration feature known as IDE Talk that enables developers to exchange text messages, exceptions, code pointers and code changes without leaving the IDE; and enhanced testing and code analysis tools.

Meanwhile, TeamCity facilitates collaboration and enhances team productivity, Dmitriev said. The IDE-independent tool is targeted at both developers and their managers, he said.

Key features in TeamCity include continuous integration support, to integrate and remotely test code changes many times a day utilizing either JUnit (for Java) or NUnit (for .Net) testing frameworks; delayed commit, which helps keep the code in version control clean and functioning at all times; build management features, including Build Grid, which allows running multiple builds and build types at a time, using popular build tools such as Ant, Maven, NAnt and MSBuild; code coverage analysis; static code analysis; and Web-based administration and project dashboard.

Having achieved its status as an elite tool for individual programmer development, JetBrains is now entering the team development arena, where it must compete anew with companies like Borland and IBM, as well as face new competition from those two and other players such as Serena Software, MKS, Accurev and even Microsoft.

Dmitriev said JetBrains is not afraid to make this foray into the application lifecycle management space, even with the big names already there.

"Big companies are trying to make team tools to sell to big companies," he said. "Were doing team tools to improve the productivity of engineers on the team."

Moreover, Dmitriev stressed that TeamCity is "completely IDEA-independent. We already have support for Microsoft Visual Studio Team System and for NetBeans and Eclipse."

Indeed, TeamCity can be used with most any IDE, he said.

Perhaps what makes JetBrains so appealing to developers is that it is solely focused on developers and the problems they face daily.

"We try to solve all pain points that we see for developers," Dmitriev said. "We dont have to think like developers—we are developers."

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