Can’t wait for IntelliJ IDEA 4.0

I really can’t wait to see the final GA release of IDEA 4.0. The JetBrains home page is also featuring the 4.0 coming soon splash graphic. I’ve been playing with most of the EAP downloads and the new features are really worth the 4.0 download or upgrade.

I personally don’t care about the GUI designer as most of my development efforts is focused on building back-end services with EJB’s and Web Services. The one thing that a lot of people find really interesting is the support for Generics that is based Sun’s Early Access compiler (1.4). A really cool feature is this concept of modules that makes sharing source files and library definitions among different projects a breeze. You can define j2ee.jar once and then reuse that for all projects instead of finding it in your directory structure and finding the copy of j2ee.jar or weblogic.jar.

One of the features that I love is the new CVS integration based on technologies licensed from the makers of SmartCVS. Being a newbie to CVS, I love the GUI interface that’s built into IDEA. I connected to my CVS server running on my Linux box in 2 minutes and was creating and checking in new content in minutes. At work, we are stuck with PVCS and I wish we could integrate that into IDEA..

Another really awesome new feature is the enhanced JUnit integration. Instead of popping up the standard JUnit window, the UI is completely integrated inside of IDEA. The new UI makes is really easy to see your test results and groups by class and package and gives you that complete view of your unit tests.

The 4.0 release is also the first release to include WebLogic integration. I can’t believe it took them this long, but the 4.0 release finally includes a really decent WebLogic integration. In older versions, it was really easy to write a simple class that just launched WebLogic from within IDEA or use the remote debug features using JPDA. This integration goes beyond these simple tasks and include support for WebLogic specific descriptors, deployment and server stop/starts.

The performance of the EAP releases has also gotten much better. The latest release that I ran was release 944 and I really think it is ready for primetime. Now that Eugene is back, I think IDEA is probably getting ready to announce and ship the GA release of 4.0.