Eclipse's annual release train focuses on JavaScript, PHP

It's late June, so it must be time again for the Eclipse Foundation's annual "release train" of open source software development technologies. JavaScript, PHP, and Docker are getting special attention in this year's version, called Neon, which arrives on Wednesday.

Now available for download, Neon marks the 11th consecutive year Eclipse has offered a simultaneous release of multiple technologies, with the intent of enabling users to perform upgrades all at once. Featuring 84 projects and more than 69 million lines of code, Neon is highlighted by Eclipse JSDT (JavaScript Development Tools) 2.0, a JavaScript IDE featuring a JSON editor, support the for Grunt and Gulp task runners, and integration with the Chromium V8 debugger. The IDE rests atop the base Eclipse platform, which features an OSGi runtime for adding plugins.

An improved Content Assist capability is supported in Neon as well. "It's a type-ahead for the JavaScript language. So it helps you complete the key words and the variable names," said Ian Skerrett, Eclipse vice president of marketing. The ECMAScript 2015 specification underlying JavaScript is accommodated by Content Assist. 

Eclipse PDT (PHP Development Tools) 4.0 is included in the release train, with improved performance and backing for PHP 7, which was released late last year. In addition, the Eclipse Docker Tooling project, for deploying Docker containers, has been improved with bug fixes and feature enhancements.

Eclipse User Storage Service is being introduced, providing a storage service for projects to store and retrieve user data and preferences from Eclipse servers. Other projects in Neon include Andmore 0.5.0, which provides an Android tooling environment; Buildship, 1.0.15, which offers plugins for the Gradle build system; Eclipse Tools for Cloud Foundry 1.0.0, featuring tools for the PaaS cloud platform, and EGerrit, for integrating with the Git Gerrit code review system. Also featured are Paho 1.2.0, an internet of things project that provides an implementation of MQTT and MQTT-SN messaging protocols, and EMF Parsley 1.0.0, a framework for UI development based on Eclipse Modeling Framework.

In other improvements, the Eclipse Automated Error Reporting client can now be integrated into any third-party plugin or standalone Rich Client Platform application. The base Eclipse Platform, meanwhile, now includes HiDPI display backing.

Next year's release train is scheduled to be called Oxygen; last year's was dubbed Mars.

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