Red Hat Java Tool for VS Code Version 1.0 Released – Visual Studio Magazine



Red Hat Java Tool for VS Code version 1.0 released

After five years of development, a Visual Studio Code extension with Java language support was delivered by Red Hat in version 1.0.

the Language support for Java from Red Hat Extension, like many on the VS Code marketplace, uses an open source voice server (Eclipse JDT language server) to provide language-specific features and functions when working with Java files.

It has already been installed around 12.4 million times and is one of the top 10 most popular VS Code marketplace offers, which speaks for the community gravitas of the extension that announced in September 2016 with this “humble” feature list:

  • Maven-based project support
  • While typing compilation error reports
  • Code completion
  • Javadoc hover
  • Code overview
  • Code navigation
  • Code lens for references
  • Highlights
  • Code formatting

Over the years this feature list has grown steadily, with one of the new features being version v1.0 Type hierarchy, described as “one of the top queries in the Java community.” It enables developers to view the type hierarchy in the class, super-type, or sub-type view.

Type hierarchy in animated action
[Click on image for larger, animated GIF view.] Type hierarchy in animated action (Source: Microsoft).

With the addition of type hierarchy and more, the tool’s feature list now looks like this:

  • Supports code from Java 1.5 to Java 17
  • Maven pom.xml project support
  • Basic support for Gradle Java projects (Android is not supported)
  • Support for standalone Java files
  • Report parsing and compilation errors as you type
  • Code completion
  • Code / source actions / refactoring
  • Javadoc hover
  • Organize imports
    • triggered manually or when saving
    • when pasting code into a Java file using Ctrl + Shift + v (Cmd + Shift + v on Mac).
  • Type search
  • Code overview
  • Code folding
  • Code navigation
  • Code lens (references / implementations)
  • Highlights
  • Code formatting (for type / selection / file)
  • Code snippets
  • Annotation processing support (automatic for Maven projects)
  • Semantic selection
  • Diagnostic tags
  • Call hierarchy
  • Type hierarchy

The tool is bundled with others for Java, packaged in the Extension package for Java, still in the preview with around 9.8 million installations.

“For the past several years, Microsoft has worked closely with Red Hat to add new functionality to this language server,” said Nick Zhu, senior program manager, on October 20 Notice. “We’ve also refined the voice server’s performance and improved stability by fixing issues and bugs.

“In addition to the main Java language support, we have created various Java extensions based on the language server and extended the Java tooling features to Visual Studio Code, including project management, build tools support for Maven / Gradle and better test support. Our goal The idea is to provide the best possible Java development experience for Visual Studio Code. ”

His list of highlights for release includes Java 17 support, performance improvements, basic Gradle-Kotlin support, and more.

For future development there are some planned improvements:

  • Simplify the configuration of compiler errors / warnings and code formatting options
  • Other useful auto-completion suggestions (e.g. Postfix-Completion)
  • Keep taking convenient code actions (such as new Java language features) and eventually achieve feature parity with those provided by the Eclipse Java IDE
  • Further improve the overall voice server performance and startup time
  • Embed a Java runtime in the extension to improve the overall “Getting Started” experience

“We believe that Red Hat’s version 1.0 of language support for Java is an important step in the entire Java journey in Visual Studio Code, and we still have a long way to go,” said Zhu. “Going forward, we plan to partner with Red Hat and invest in basic Java language support, and we are committed to providing a great Java development experience.”

About the author

David Ramel is an editor and writer for Converge360.

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