Wednesday, October 14, 2015

DOT Debug View

In my past post I presented a small hack that used the returned value of the toDOT() method of a variable in the debug view (in Eclipse) to generate a graph in the eclipsegraphviz  view. Today I am presenting the new, improved, version of this.

No more hacking into the Eclipsegraphviz view

After discussing my idea with Rafael Chaves (@abstratt), the author of Eclipsegraphviz, he was kind enough to provide a nicer method to access the view provided by his plugin. Thanks a lot Rafael!

The DOT Debug View plugin

My initial hack didn't play nicely with with the thread management principles of both the Elcipse UI and the JDT. Hopefully this has been corrected, and thus using the new plugin should not had adverse effects on the debugger or the UI.

Providing an Eclipse Update Site

When developing plugins I always had the issue of distribution and subsequent updates. Eclipse provides a very solid update framework through via its p2 component. However, if you don't own a domain or hosting space, making your updatesite available might be tricky. 

Luckily, I fumbled upon bintray while looking for alternatives. Based on the script provided by Lars Vogel, you can read this post about it, I came up with a Python version to help me (and hopefully others) publish their update sites to bintray. You can find the script here: py_bintray-publish-p2-updatesite

Using DOT Debug View plugin

As before, all you need to do is provide a method with the signature "String toDOT()" in your class, and return a valid DOT graph string of a representation/view of your object. Of course you need to install Eclipsegraphviz too!.

You can find more details on the project's gitbub page, but basically you can add the following url to your update sites and install it: