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Ruby Developers Get Productive with NetBeans' Ruby Pack

The simplicity and power of Ruby and Ruby on Rails have become renowned. However, finding a suitable IDE has sometimes left them wanting. With NetBeans, Ruby developers may find the productivity gains of their language are finally matched by an IDE.

any developers have started to warm to the power and simplicity of Ruby. While the language is simple and powerful, one of the hits against it has been the lack of proper tool support (read this article for more information).

Increasingly a fan of NetBeans in Java development, I was recently alerted to NetBeans' plan to provide support for Ruby (and Ruby on Rails). I have found NetBeans to be my IDE of choice in the Java arena because it is free and it supports many development project needs. From Web service, to Web application, to mobile phone application, NetBeans supports all types of Java application development and testing without the need to figure out which plug-ins are needed and how to install them. NetBeans' convenient Update Manager makes it quick and easy to install or upgrade any application development module. This article looks at NetBeans' Ruby Pack and how it might offer Ruby developers an important IDE option.

If you're not familiar with Ruby, check out these Ruby tutorials I wrote for DevX this past year:

How to Get NetBeans Ruby Pack
While the NetBeans Wiki Ruby Installation page suggests four ways to get and install the Ruby Pack, the easiest way is to get a "Preview” release of NetBeans 6 with the Ruby Pack already provided. Yes, to use the Ruby Pack, you will need NetBeans 6.

NetBeans 6 is scheduled for release in November 2007 (according to the NetBeans.org news page). Development/preview downloads of version 6 can be obtained here. If you want your copy of NetBeans to come Ruby-ready, make sure you pick the option to download a "Full" NetBeans 6 copy with Ruby as well as SOA, UML, Mobility, and other pack support (166MB). Remember, early developer downloads should be used at your own risk as "dev builds are not release quality." For completeness, it should be noted that NetBeans 6 also requires the JDK (version 5 or 6 is acceptable).

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