NetBeans Platform Learning Trail
Last reviewed on 2022-01-14
- What is the NetBeans Platform?
- NetBeans Platform Tutorials
- Introductory tutorials
- Extending the NetBeans Platform
- Using Maven to build applications
- Using OSGi modules with the NetBeans Platform
- Testing and diagnostics
- Sample applications.
- How to develop editors
- NetBeans APIs for Visualizing Data
- Building custom project types
- Options window
- Property editors
- Quick search, Ribbon bars, Wizards
- Ant and Maven
- API Reference
What is the NetBeans Platform?
The NetBeans Platform is a broad Java framework on which you can base large desktop applications.
See a list of NetBeans based applications that have been built on top of the NetBeans platform.
|The fact that we use the NetBeans Platform to build the NetBeans IDE does not mean that you can only build IDEs with it. People design planes, manage airports and harbors, manage satellite earth stations, build passenger information systems, design radar systems, play music, paint complex graphs and more using the NetBeans Platform.|
The NetBeans Platform contains APIs that simplify the handling of windows, actions, files, user selection and many other things typical in desktop based applications. This greatly makes things easier for you, reducing the time-to-market required to create great applications.
Of course great power comes with great responsiblity, so you have to learn how to use the NetBeans Platform before taking advantage of its full potential. This page may be of help.
This section contains links to books, refcards, blogs and videos that you may consider useful while learning the NetBeans Platform.
This is a list of books that may help you get started. Some of them are somewhat old, but NetBeans main concepts have not evolved that much, and most of them are still up to date.
The dzone Essential NetBeans Platform Refcard may be of interest to you.
Some blogs you may find of interest:
We have a YouTube channel with many videos you may want to check.
The community has also contributed documentation along the years. Let us know if you want yours included here!
wiki.apidesign.org by Jaroslav Turach, NetBeans main architect.
DDL Visualizer: Visualize SQL Script with NetBeans, by Damir Tesanovic
Customize the Splash Screen and About Dialog, by Tonny Kohar
Quick Start: Creating Language Tools In NetBeans IDE, by Jordi R. Cardona
The NetBeans Platform on Standalone Swing Applications, by Antonio Vieiro, explains how to use some NetBeans APIs in a plain Swing application.
NetBeans Platform Tutorials
We have ported the NetBeans Tutorials to this site, but some of the tutorials need a review.
You can help us improve the tutorials following these contribution guidelines.
For historical reasons, the NetBeans Platform Learning Trail has also a list of tutorials you may want to check.
The Runtime Container Tutorial explains how NetBeans works internally.
Top 10 NetBeans APIs (Videos) explains the "top 10" NetBeans APIs.
Extending the NetBeans Platform
The NetBeans module system is very extensible, meaning that you can add features through different mechanisms: the Java’s service provider interface, the Lookup API (that also works with the service provider interface) and the concept of "layers" (that works in a similar way to the Windows registry).
For an introduction to the Java Service Provider mechanism see Oracle’s Creating Extensible Applications With the Java Platform
For an introduction to the NetBeans Lookup API see NetBeans Lookups Explained!.
You may also find How Do NetBeans Extension Points Work? of interest.
The Description of Layer Registrations in NetBeans APIs explains how each module in NetBeans registers files, documents, classes and more in a global registry that you can query.
Using Maven to build applications
You can use Maven and the NetBeans Platform to build great applications. Here’re some tutorials to get you started:
Using OSGi modules with the NetBeans Platform
You can use OSGi modules within a NetBeans Platform.
Testing and diagnostics
When building applications on top of the NetBeans Platform you want, of course, to test things. Also to diagnose what’s going on. These are of help:
How to develop editors
Of course, the NetBeans Platform has many features to build top-noch editors (that’s because we build the NetBeans IDE on top of the platform :-)). Here’s a list of tutorials that you can use to build your own editors.
NetBeans APIs for Visualizing Data
The NetBeans Platform has a powerful library (called the "NetBeans Visual Library") that you can use to build complex user-interactive visualizations.
Building custom project types
Since we use the NetBeans Platform to build the NetBeans IDE, we use objects known as "Projects" to represent Java, PHP or C/C++ "projects".
You can use "projects" to represent a set of files or concepts organized in a hierarchy. Be either the list of rails in a train station, or a hierarchy of parts of a component you’re designing.
These tutorials explain how to extend existing project types or to create your own.
We use "templates" to create files with some predefined content.
When you select an object in your application, the "Property Editor" window automatically shows the properties of the object. Be it a plane, a train or a satellite.
Quick search, Ribbon bars, Wizards
The IDE has specific components that help you create quick search fields, ribbon bars and wizards.
This is a list of most frequently used APIs in the NetBeans Platform.