I've been using Eclipse 3.3 for a while now, and I've been getting that common feeling again: missing all kinds of little features when switching back to an "old" Eclipse based tool. There is all kinds of stuff I really like:
- Label coloring for Java elements (enable it in Java > Appearance).
- Quick Access (Ctrl+3) for navigating around to a view or preference page.
- Triple click on a line to select the complete line, drag and drop text. This is very handy when using the mouse, but I am not using the mouse that often in Eclipse though.
- The new Java 6 debugging features rock. Introspecting references is really handy when trying to analyze memory leaks or weird object interactions.
- The Plug-in Development Environment is a lot more advanced. Code completion has become something people expect in Eclipse (it's everywhere), and the new user interface looks very nice.
- Specialized downloads for new users. This makes it a lot easier to try out the new Web Tools or C++ development environment. Just download and unzip, and you are good to go.
- No more mucking around in eclipse.ini to prevent perm space memory errors on Sun JVMs. This is now done automatically on Windows.
A huge win for me is the way how maximize and minimize now works. In the past, maximizing an editor would fill out a single editor across the entire screen. If you are working on a wide-screen monitor, like the one my laptop has, this results in a big amount of white space which is not very useful. In Eclipse 3.3, tiling editors is preserved when maximized. This makes it easy to place my unit test and code editor next to each other, so I when I am typing tests, I can very easily inspect the code I am testing. If you have a widescreen monitor, definately try this out! It looks like this:
Also views are minimized instead of completely hidden. A lot of people don't even know you can minimize a view, because before Eclipse 3.3, minimizing didn't make much sense. It was completely horizontal oriented, which means it usually just looked weird and wasted space. When minimized in Eclipse 3.3, views now behave more like "fast views", and always actually do really minimize. This all works out very nice, because there is much less need to switch maximize/restore to look at a view, especially combined with quick access.