Installing the Latest Version of Eclipse IDE (Mars) in Debian

The version of Eclipse that currently comes in Debian (even in “Unstable”) is pretty old. There have been tons of awesome development in this kitchen sink IDE over the last few years. Luckily, installing the latest version of Eclipse in Debian manually is not that difficult.

  1. Download the latest release form the release page. There are a bunch of different versions that are tailored for Java, C/C++, PHP, developers along with other use cases. The one you pick does not really matter since you can install any features you want in any of these versions. Picking the Java one is a sensible default.

  2. Once you have downloaded Eclipse, navigate to the Downloads folder in a terminal and untar it.

    tar xf eclipse*.tar.gz

  3. Move eclipse to the /opt directory

    Opt is where things that are not installed by your package manager are “supposed to go”. I usually throw things in there.

    sudo mv eclipse /opt

  4. Create a symbolic link to make launching eclipse a breeze.

    sudo ln -s /opt/eclipse/eclipse /usr/local/bin/eclipse

  5. You can now launch eclipse by typing eclipse in a terminal window.

  6. The last (optional) step is to make a Desktop Icon.

    Create a file called eclipse.desktop in /usr/share/applications The file should look something like this:

    sudo vim /usr/share/applications/eclipse.desktop

    [Desktop Entry]
    Name=Eclipse IDE
    Comment=Java Integrated Development Environment
    Exec=/usr/local/bin/eclipse
    Terminal=false
    Icon=/opt/eclipse/icon.xpm
    Type=Application
    Categories=Development;IDE
    

Save this file and you will see Eclipse IDE show up in your list of installed applications. Click on it and you are now all set to use the latest version of Eclipse.

Nice work! Now that you have Eclipse installed, you should check out Java: The Complete Reference to brush up on your Java skills or learn some new ones.

If you made it this far, you should probably follow me on twitter. 🙂

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