Netbeans with Woodstock or JBoss Studio Developer with RichFaces?

Choices we’ve made so far:

1.) Swing or JSF? We chose JSF

2.) JPA or Stored Procedures? We chose JPA.

3.) Netbeans with Woodstock or JDeveloper 11g with ADF Faces? We eliminated JDeveloper 11g.

Our final choice is between Netbeans with Woodstock or JBoss Studio Developer with RichFaces. My coworker, Hobi, and I both developed prototypes. He used RichFaces and I used Woodstock. He chose not to use an IDE for his coding, I chose to use Nebeans Visual JSF. We both had good experiences and we both admired each others’ results. Because my team is mostly coming from the Powerbuilder context, I am insisting that whatever JSF implementation we choose, it must be well-supported by an IDE. In my experience, visual interfaces are best designed with visual development environments. I spent years designing Swing GUIs without a visual designer, and when I began using Matisse (Netbeans GUI Builder) my productivity and design improved dramatically.

So, our next logical step is to tryout JBoss’s brand new but supposedly relatively mature Developer Studio 1.0. It should be relatively mature because it is built on the Eclipse IDE platform and Exadel (which was at version 4 before they open-sourced and joined with Redhat and JBoss). Rather than pay the $99 to tryout Developer Studio, we’ve opted to use the JBoss Tools 2.0 Eclipse plugin (which is supposed to be exactly the same).

If we find that JBoss Developer Studio is as good an IDE or better than Netbeans for developing JSF with JPA, then we will probably go with JBoss. We both like the idea of using Facelets/XHTML instead of JSP, and we’ve both found RichFaces widgets to be more responsive because of the heavy use of AJAX (which we also like). So it comes down to the tools.

This will not be an easy choice. Netbeans 6.0 is considered by some to be the most competitive release of Netbeans ever, on a par with Eclipse. I’m also emotionally attached to Netbeans, having used it since before 3.6.

More to come…

And the winner is?????????

Icefaces and MyEclipse….although lookout MyEclipse, I understand Netbeans will be moving to IceFaces soon.


Stripes Framework and JQuery for the win!!!


  1. Yes. 11G ADF Faces does not support IE6 web browser. I work for the FAA, and they have not yet approved IE7 for internal use for FAA employees.

    I’m glad Oracle is forging ahead, and ADF Faces 11G is by far the most compelling JSF implementation I’ve seen, but I’m stuck with supporting IE6 for at least another year.


  2. We have been using the woodstock component library and are about to abandon it. Our clients are complaining that the pages render too slow. We are considering going with JSF standard components or with Rich Faces. I would be interested if others have had similar experiences with woodstock?

  3. I’m curious to know how you progressed with this – the Woodstock project that Sun was using to deliver Visual JSF is dead in the water, and has got some quite significant bugs which are unlikely to ever be resolved.

    Thanks for recording your thoughts on 11G ADF as well, it saves me going down the same experimental route and rejecting it on the same basis.

  4. So far so good with Icefaces and MyEclipse. Although I hear that Sun has dropped Woodstock altogether and will be adopting IceFaces for Visual Web in Netbeans. And you know I likes me some Netbeans!

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