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NetBeans 4.1 has built in support for Sun App Server and Tomcat 5.5. There is also a Server Plugins project for NB that adds support for JBoss 4, WebLogic 9 and WebSphere 6. The server plugins project is currently classified as experimental.

Currently the only way to try these plugins is to build NB and the required plugins – you can only download the source for them at the moment. Downloading and building is a easy process, albeit rather lengthy. Full details are given on the server plugins home page, but basically to download from CVS and build on Windows you need to do the following.

rem Create a directory to store and build NB in.
mkdir netbeans
cd netbeans

rem Setup CVS

rem login to CVS - no password required.
cvs login

rem download NB relase 4.1 source
cvs -z 6 co -r release41 -P stable

rem download server plugins source
cvs -z 6 co -P serverplugins

rem build NB
cd nbbuild

rem build JBoss plugin
rem change into the weblogic9 or websphere6 directories
rem and run ant to build these plugins.
cd ../serverplugins/jboss4

Once this is all done, there should be a netbeans/bin directory from which you can run the freshly build NB with the new server modules.

Starting up NB and selecting Tools – Server Manager allows you to now add a server instance for JBoss, WebLogic or WebSphere.

I tried building the JBoss 4 plugin and it integrated correctly with my JBoss 4.0.2 installation. I was able to create an enterprise app from within NB and deploy and run it successfully to JBoss 4 – all from within NB.

Recently I wanted to add a connection pool to my Spring Web Application. I decided to use Commons DBCP to provide the connection pool as I’m using the Spring JDBC wrapper classes. Googling around didn’t find any examples of how to set up DBCP, so I’ve written my findings here.

Adding a connection pool to a Spring app is simply a matter of specifying the relevant entries in the Spring servlet configuration file. The XML snippet below shows an example of how a database connection pool can easily be configured.

<bean id="dataSource" class="org.apache.commons.dbcp.BasicDataSource"
  <property name="driverClassName">

  <property name="url">
  <property name="username">

  <property name="password">
  <property name="initialSize">

  <property name="maxActive">

  <property name="maxIdle">

I've just noticed a poll that is currently running on the home page asking if anyone has ever ran a Java Web Start Application.

I must say that the results were quite encouraging. At the time of writing, 80% of the respondents have answered "yes" to the question. ( You can see the current poll results here ).

Being able to run applications without having to install any software (apart from the loader) has got to be one of the most beneficial aspects available to modern computing. I still remember the old days when IT departments had to manually install software on every workstation.

One of my favourite examples of using Web Start is on Santhosh Kumar's WebLog (which, incidentally, I recommend to anyone doing Swing development) where he provides sample Java code and then a Web Start example of the code.

If you are one of the 20% that hasn’t run a Web Start application yet, have a look at Sun's docs.

I’ve just installed the NetBeans module that allows me to access my Subversion repositories from within NB 4.1.

Installing is a painless process.

  1. Browse to the NetBeans Generic VCS Module page and download the relevant module (currently Subversion 1.1.5 and 1.1.6 available).
  2. Select “Update Center” from the “Tools” menu in NB.
  3. Choose to install a manually downloaded module rather than contact the update center
  4. Select the file you have just downloaded and complete the Wizard.

Once you have done this, NetBeans will install the module and you can start using Subversion. (NetBeans 4.0 seems to need a restart at this stage, but 4.1 doesn’t).

Once you’ve got support added, click on `Versioning -> Versioning Manager` and add a Subversion working directory to the list noting to specify the correct parameters for the Subversion repository.

You should now have support for the SVN commands from within the Projects tab in NB.