November 2, 2011

Rich Visualforce Editor that finally supports Content Assist !

IMPORTANT: Author of this plugin might not get alerted for any comments made here on this blog’s comments section. I request you all to directly raise issue on the github repository for this product here : https://github.com/ajayhada/Rich-VisualForce-Editor/issues

We all miss content assist support in Force.com IDE Visualforce editor. My previous attempt of using eclipse code templates was a patch to fill this gap. Good news now is, my colleague @AjayHada is creating a Visualforce editor, that will give decent code assistance support on typical “CTRL + SPACE” hit.

Meet @AjayHada !

Before we go any further, let me introduce you all with @AjayHada. He is a J2EE champ with a decade of experience in developing applications ranging from Supply chain management, ERP and Social Event management.

AjayHada’s experiences with Force.com IDE :-/

Ajay recently started learning and developing on Force.com platform. After a few days of flying in clouds, his major point of frustration was Force.com IDE, because of its well known limited capabilities. Being a Java guy by heart, he decided to write an Eclipse plugin to fill this long void, and he started an open source project for visualforce editor. After a few hours of research and RnD he was able to come up with an alpha version of this editor.

This editor is available on github here : https://github.com/ajayhada/Rich-VisualForce-Editor

Rich Visualforce Editor Plugin for Force.com IDE

This editor in its infant stage is supporting content assist for most commonly used visualforce tags.

How to launch ?

launching rich visualforce editor

  • Right click on any Visualforce page, to launch the popup menu.
  • Select “Open With” menu item.
  • In the sub menu select “Rich Visualforce Editor”.

 

 

Content assist in action !

control space with visualforce editor tags

CTRL + SPACE in action for tags

tag specific attributes in visualforce editor

CTRL + SPACE assistance for tag specific attributes

 

Liked it, How to install ?

You can download this zip “rich.visual.force.editor.plugin.zip” from here. After download extract the zip and copy “VFEdit_xxxxx.jar” to “eclipse install folder/plugins”. Restart eclipse to reflect the changes.

Rich Visualforce Editor Roadmap & TODOs

Following are the features planned in next release. You are more than welcome, to fork and contribute to any of these.

  • HTML5 tag support will be added to future versions
  • Only applicable tags will be visible inside tags like apex:param will only be visible for applicable parent tags
  • Display validation errors for apex and html tags
  • Used attributes will be removed from the suggestion box.
  • Suggestion box will also show some mark to show that tag is related to APEX, or HTML4, or HTML5
  • Proper Tag, Attribute, Text, Comment color scheme
  • Context sensitive help within IDE on pressing a hot key for visualforce tags.
  • Support for “plugin update site” for all known pros.
  • Support for dynamic update of tags and attributes, as per new Salesforce releases.

 

Help required from Force.com IDE team !

This plugin can be more awesome, if they can give us XSD/DTD for visualforce tags. This will help a lot in developing this editor in lesser time.

Your views and feedback !

Looking forward to those