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04 February 2013, 11:04

Vaadin modernises in version 7

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Vaadin 7 is the first major update of the GWT-based Java web framework since 2009, when version 6 was released. The major change in Vaadin 7 is, according to the announcement, that Google Web Toolkit (GWT) is now an integrated part of the framework rather than a dependency. The change is touted as enabling better support for client-side widgets and opening up the possibility of Vaadin-based off-line applications. The developers will also be able to address GWT issues more rapidly as they have control of their own GWT code. Vaadin 7 includes the features of GWT 2.5 such as Super Dev Mode and the Elemental library.

In conjunction with the repositioning of GWT, the Vaadin developers have opened up the client-side of its client/server model to allow coders to create applications that work better in a mobile context by making it easier to create components which offload work to the server or work better off-line.

Overall, Vaadin says there are sixty-five new features in the update. These include support for SASS-based themes, new Windowing and JavaScript APIs, simpler widget development, and redesigned forms. In the background, a new heartbeat function can keep sessions alive, while a new state generation and synchronisation system makes the connection between client and server more efficient. Manually repainting UI components is no loner needed and new components include a colour picker, Flash support, and image display. A fuller listing of all the new functions is available. Full release notes are also available which detail the process of upgrading to Vaadin 7 and list all the bug fixes made in the new release.

Vaadin 7 is available to download via Maven, Ivy, and the Vaadin Plugin for Eclipse or as a direct download. The Apache 2.0 licensed framework also has an updated video tutorial and examples.


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