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Eclipse vs. Netbeans: What's the Difference?

Edited by Aimie Carlson || By Harlon Moss || Updated on October 23, 2023
Eclipse and NetBeans are both integrated development environments (IDEs); Eclipse is mainly backed by IBM, while NetBeans is primarily supported by Oracle.

Key Differences

Eclipse, a popular open-source IDE, is primarily known for its flexible nature. Supported by IBM and a large developer community, it caters to a broad array of software developers with tools and plugins. On the other hand, NetBeans, backed by Oracle, is both an open-source IDE and an application platform, often praised for its out-of-the-box functionality.
In the context of Java development, Eclipse has been a go-to for many developers because of its robust plugin ecosystem. NetBeans, while also extensible, is commonly appreciated for its native support for a plethora of tools, reducing the need for external plugins. Both IDEs are suitable for beginners, but Eclipse might require a steeper learning curve due to its vast array of features.
When it comes to performance, Eclipse can be memory-intensive, especially when loaded with many plugins. NetBeans, in contrast, offers a more streamlined experience, ensuring smooth performance even with many features running simultaneously.
Community support is an important aspect for open-source projects. Eclipse, having been around for a long time, boasts a vibrant and vast community, which translates to a plethora of plugins and extensions. NetBeans also has a strong community, especially among academic and educational sectors, providing abundant resources and tutorials.

Comparison Chart

Backed By


Core Strength

Highly customizable with plugins
Out-of-the-box functionality


Can be memory-intensive
Typically smoother

Community Support

Extensive and varied
Strong, especially in academia

Primary Use

General-purpose IDE
IDE and application platform

Eclipse and Netbeans Definitions


A decline or loss of significance or power.
The new model's release led to the eclipse of the older version.


A tool supported by Oracle for coding in Java and other languages.
With Oracle's backing, NetBeans has become a reputable IDE.


An event where one thing overshadows another.
The star's scandal caused an eclipse in his career.


A software suite that offers native tools and features.
NetBeans comes with built-in debugging tools for developers.


An obscuring of light from one celestial body by the passage of another.
The total solar eclipse drew large crowds of spectators.


A community-driven project for aiding software development.
The NetBeans community offers a wealth of resources and tutorials.


A type of computer software used for developing applications.
Developers often use Eclipse for Java programming.


An open-source integrated development environment (IDE) for software development.
Many students learn Java programming using NetBeans.


A surpassing or outshining.
The rookie's performance was an eclipse of the veteran's.


A platform for building web, desktop, and mobile applications.
Developers utilized NetBeans to build the new desktop application.


The partial or complete obscuring, relative to a designated observer, of one celestial body by another.


In what context is the word 'eclipse' used in astronomy?

In astronomy, an 'eclipse' refers to the obscuring of light from one celestial body by the passage of another.

What is Eclipse primarily known for?

Eclipse is primarily known as an integrated development environment (IDE) for software development.

Who backs Eclipse?

Eclipse is mainly backed by IBM.

Is Eclipse only for Java development?

No, while popular for Java, Eclipse supports multiple programming languages through plugins.

Which IDE has a steeper learning curve, Eclipse or NetBeans?

Eclipse might have a steeper learning curve due to its vast array of features.

What is the meaning of 'eclipse' in a metaphorical sense?

Metaphorically, 'eclipse' can mean a decline or overshadowing of significance or power.

What is NetBeans?

NetBeans is an open-source integrated development environment (IDE) primarily for software development.

Is NetBeans only for Java development?

No, while popular for Java, NetBeans also supports other programming languages.

Which IDE offers more out-of-the-box functionality, Eclipse or NetBeans?

NetBeans is often praised for its out-of-the-box functionality compared to Eclipse.

Is Eclipse open-source?

Yes, Eclipse is an open-source project.

Can both Eclipse and NetBeans be used for mobile app development?

Yes, both Eclipse and NetBeans can be used for mobile app development, though specific plugins or tools might be needed.

Which IDE, Eclipse or NetBeans, has a more extensive plugin ecosystem?

Eclipse is renowned for its extensive plugin ecosystem.

Are Eclipse and NetBeans available for all major operating systems?

Yes, both Eclipse and NetBeans are available for major operating systems like Windows, macOS, and Linux.

Is NetBeans open-source?

Yes, NetBeans is an open-source project.

Can I use both Eclipse and NetBeans on the same project?

Yes, but there might be configuration nuances and differences to consider.

How long have Eclipse and NetBeans been in the software development industry?

Both Eclipse and NetBeans have been in the industry for over two decades.

Who supports NetBeans?

NetBeans is primarily supported by Oracle.

Which IDE is more memory-intensive, Eclipse or NetBeans?

Eclipse can be more memory-intensive, especially with many plugins.

Are there specific types of projects where one might prefer NetBeans over Eclipse or vice versa?

Preferences vary; some might choose NetBeans for its out-of-the-box tools, while others might pick Eclipse for its customization capabilities.

What is the significance of community support for Eclipse and NetBeans?

Community support ensures a plethora of plugins, extensions, resources, and tutorials for both Eclipse and NetBeans.
About Author
Written by
Harlon Moss
Harlon is a seasoned quality moderator and accomplished content writer for Difference Wiki. An alumnus of the prestigious University of California, he earned his degree in Computer Science. Leveraging his academic background, Harlon brings a meticulous and informed perspective to his work, ensuring content accuracy and excellence.
Edited by
Aimie Carlson
Aimie Carlson, holding a master's degree in English literature, is a fervent English language enthusiast. She lends her writing talents to Difference Wiki, a prominent website that specializes in comparisons, offering readers insightful analyses that both captivate and inform.

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