Historically, IBM has been a very Eclipse-centric house. We spend a lot of time writing tools that plug into Eclipse to make developing with WebSphere and Liberty easier. Despite this, there are a number of alternative options for writing Java applications and we often get asked if you can use IntelliJ IDEA to develop applications for Liberty. Of course, the answer is yes, the team at JetBrains does a good job at this, with little prompting from us. We even wrote an article about how to write a simple application using IntelliJ IDEA.

One bit of feedback we got was that the develop/deploy experience with IntelliJ IDEA wasn’t as quick as it was for Eclipse. With the Eclipse plug-in, Liberty runs the application directly from the Eclipse workspace. This means that you don’t need to do an expensive build and redeploy of an application and, if you make changes to HTML, JSP, JavaScript etc they don’t trigger an application restart. With the 2016.3 release of IntelliJ IDEA this has been fixed and IntelliJ IDEA can now use the exact same mechanism as Eclipse uses to run the application from the IntelliJ IDEA project.

With Eclipse this is on by default. With IntelliJ IDEA you have to enable it, but it is really easy:

  1. From the Run/Debug configuration for Liberty, you just remove the bit that reads Build … artifact by selecting it and clicking the below, then click + :

    IntelliJ IDEA Run/Debug Configuration

  2. Select Build loose applications:
    Select Build loose applications
  3. Select the modules you want to build and click OK:
    Select modules to deploy

Next time you deploy and run the application it’ll run from the workspace.

The team at JetBrains are doing a great job with their Liberty integration, let them know if you have any enhancement or bug requests.

Join The Discussion

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *