Eclipse on Ubuntu 9.10

It’s Christmas time ! … and Santa Claus brought me a brand new Laptop this year ! Indeed, I have succeed negotiated the model and finally choose a Dell Studio 1555 that comes with a Core 2 DuoT6600@2.2 GHz and 4 GB of RAM at a very reasonable price …

First thing to do : install a serious operating system instead of the messy Windows 7 preconfigured by default (actually so messy that I was not even able after 15 minutes to switch the start menu into classic mode !). I ran Ubuntu 8.04 on my older laptop and was very happy with it so logically look forward to the Karmic Koala : Ubuntu 9.10. As I have a descent processor now, I choose the 64 bits version and installation happens like a charm.

Second thing to do : initialize a descent development environment cause after all … I’m a coder ! So I download brand new Eclipse revisions and that’s where the things started going wrong. Here’s a summary of the problems I encounter and the workaround / status of them.

Eclipse 3.5 SR1

First tested package was last stable release of Eclipse. I picked the JEE package and selected the correct linux x64 archive, download it and unzip it. The launch of Eclipse and import of a simple Java project did not reveal any problem. I then wanted to install some other third party plugins and here’s the bug I encounter :

  • The tree within Update Site Explorer did not correctly appear : I had to manually resize the columns so that content appear,
  • Clicking on ‘Next’ button has no effect. I had to use keyboard to validate my choices.

I started scratching my head when I finally found this eclipse bug mentioning a compatibility issue between the SWT version embedded into 3.5 and the new version of GTK (2.18) embedded into Ubuntu 9.10. The issue tracker also references a workaround that consists in setting the GDK_NATIVE_WINDOWS environment variable for forcing GTK on the old behaviour.

I tried putting one of this 2 lines – alternately – into my ~/.bashrc file :


but with no effect for me ! The bug still appear so I decided trying another version of Eclipse. After all, the 3.4 release was working great on my other laptop and I did not need new features of 3.5…

Eclipse 3.4 SR2

Same scenario : select the correct package, download, extract, launch and … ooops ! Even launching did not succeed ! I ended up with a popup telling me to check the log file – where I found these 2 exceptions :

!ENTRY org.eclipse.ui.workbench 4 0 2009-12-28 18:23:26.410
!MESSAGE Widget disposed too early!
java.lang.RuntimeException: Widget disposed too early!
at org.eclipse.ui.internal.WorkbenchPartReference$1.widgetDisposed(
at org.eclipse.swt.widgets.TypedListener.handleEvent(
at org.eclipse.swt.widgets.EventTable.sendEvent(
at org.eclipse.swt.widgets.Widget.sendEvent(


!ENTRY org.eclipse.osgi 4 0 2009-12-28 18:23:26.446
!MESSAGE Application error
org.eclipse.swt.SWTError: XPCOM error -2147467262
at org.eclipse.swt.browser.Mozilla.error(
at org.eclipse.swt.browser.Mozilla.setText(
at org.eclipse.swt.browser.Browser.setText(
at org.eclipse.ui.internal.intro.impl.presentations.BrowserIntroPartImplementation.generateContentForPage(
at org.eclipse.ui.internal.intro.impl.presentations.BrowserIntroPartImplementation.dynamicStandbyStateChanged(

Houps ! I finally found this blog post mentioning that the workaround is just to append


in eclipse.ini file. This works for me but then I fall again onto the same SWT/GTK bugs that previously tested version ! I should have been prepared to that because some other posts talk about these problems on 3.4.2 revision of Eclipse (see comment #4).

At that time, I was really close to being stuck but decided to investigate a little more and re-read the Eclipse issue till the end. It mention that HEAD revision of Eclipse has these bugs fixed so I tried a Nightly build of head …

Eclipse 3.5.2 20091210.0800

Finally, I download these version from and found a revision that resolves this issues. Although the nightly build did not exist as a JEE package, I succeed in manually installing all the plugins I needed for developpement. And this time, it was really fast and easy !

Just one thing that I didn’t succeed yet : installing the new Groovy plugin for Eclipse, nightly build version seems to bring issues with AJDT compiler version. To be continued in a future post 😉

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