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28 October 2009, 15:44

Microsoft and Eclipse form partnership for improved interoperability

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Zoom Microsoft's plans for integrating Java with Azure
This week at the Eclipse Summit Europe held in Ludwigsburg, Germany, Microsoft has announced new initiatives and projects. In one initiative, Microsoft plans to assist Eclipse developers with utilising the new functionality offered by Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008 R2. Another initiative sees Microsoft wanting to enable Java and PHP developers who use Eclipse as a development environment to build applications that are suitable for Microsoft's Azure cloud platform. Support for Silverlight, Microsoft's RIA (Rich Internet Applications) technology, is also planned.

Microsoft is co-operating with companies who already have Eclipse technologies in their portfolios or are responsible for them within the Eclipse community. For support of Windows 7 and Windows Server, Microsoft has been co-operating with Tasktop Technologies, the company behind the task-focused Mylyn interface technology. In the first quarter of 2010, Tasktop will release the relevant Eclipse extensions under the Eclipse Public Licence (EPL). Scheduled to be part of the next simultaneous release of Eclipse projects (code named Helios), they mainly offer task bar elements for Windows 7 and extend the Eclipse Standard Widget Toolkit (SWT) to include Windows 7 features.

Soyatec, who have been working with with Microsoft to develop the Eclipse Tools for Silverlight, helped with implementing the support of Azure and Silverlight. This has lead to the Windows Azure Tools for Eclipse, an open source plug-in that enables PHP developers working with the Eclipse development environment to develop web applications for Azure. The plug-in is currently available as a Community Technology Preview (CTP), and the release of version 1.0 is expected before the end of the year. Another new project is the free Windows Azure SDK for Java, a Java equivalent of the PHP version.

Interested readers can find more information in Vijay Rajagoplan's blog, Microsoft's interoperability expert, who told The H's associates at heise Developer that the new initiatives are another sign that Microsoft is open to open source technologies.


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