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Monday, 24 October 2011

Getting Comfortable with Eclipse

I started using Eclipse recently. I'd tried and given up twice before, because the learning curve is quite steep and my heart wasn't really in it. This time I persevered, and now definitely see its advantages.

I'm been a Visual Studio user for over a decade, and most of my problems with Eclipse were to do with the dissimilarities between the two. It was quite tempting to change all the key settings to make Eclipse look like Visual Studio, but decided to forbear and take the hit of learning a new set of commands. With a bit of searching around under Windows > Preferences > General > Keys I managed to find equivalents for most of the functionality I was used to in VS2010. One command escaped me though: typing Ctrl + C to copy the current line onto the clipboard. There is no native Eclipse equivalent for this; the best you can do is move to the start of the line, highlight the line, then copy. However, someone else had also found this a problem, but unlike me, they came up with a solution.

You need to visit this page and follow the instructions. (On Windows, the 'dropins' folder is in the 'eclipse' folder; presumably something similar for Mac and Linux.) Restart Eclipse and Ctrl + C will work as it used to.

My thanks to the author of this drop-in. I have to point out that, for my setup at least, it's not working for HTML and CSS files. Python and JavaScript are perfect though.