I am in the process of finding a powerful framework for designing a Swing based desktop application. For this I consulted the book „The Definitive Guide to NetBeans™ Platform“ (Boeck, 2009) and the screencast series TOP 10 NetBeans APIs on the netbeans platform website.
I find that most of the features of this platform are quite impressive. The only feature that looks a bit messy to me is the configuration using the layer.xml file. I believe it can become rather confusing, when there are many modules all contributing or overwriting different files or properties. Furthermore, I am quite concerned about the NetBeans modules, which are not 100% compatible with OSGi modules. As with 6.9 the whole platform can run on OSGi, I hope that the NetBeans modules will be changed to OSGi bundles and that these modules could be flexibly reused in Swing applications running on OSGi.
I am most concerned about the footprint of the platform. I have tested the memory usage and startup time on my MacBook running Mac OS X Version 10.6.3. Furthermore, I have listed the size of the distribution. I have added nothing to the projects created by the wizard.
|Variant||Distribution Size||Memory||Startup Time|
|Java Desktop Application (Swing Application Framework)||528 KB||54.4 MB||2 s|
|NetBeans Platform Application (Maven archetype)||8.4 MB (SNAPSHOT.zip)||129.0 MB||5 s|
|NetBeans Platform Application||7.5 MB (build-zip)||106.1 MB||5 s|
|NetBeans Runtime (Container only)||1.3 MB (build-zip)||66.6 MB||2 s|
|NetBeans Platform Application (without OSGi modules)||6.9 MB (build-zip)||112.2 MB||5 s|