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Framework to develop simple Eclipse plugin using PHP

Project lead, student:


This project is one of the selected projects for Google's Summer of Code program in 2007.


Abstract Framework to develop simple Eclipse plugin using PHP. Create a framework that could support developing simple Eclipse plugin using a PHP To Java bridge (Like Caucho's Quercus and other JSR 223 engines). Develop and document a sample plugin in PHP, so that PHP developers could create simple plugins.

Getting the Plugin


Update site

SVN access

Using the Plugin


PHP today can be used for almost anything but it will be rather difficult to use it for building GUI's in Eclipse, extending existent Views/Editors or other Eclipse Widgets that is usually done in Eclipse plugins. Although it is possible to create Java objects in PHP code and interact with them, call arbitary methods on even preinitialized objects this should not be the case in getting aid from PHP from the Eclipse plugin development point of view. PHP should or can be used for the functional parts of the plugins. Either using a third party PHP library to do some work or writing functionality that one would not want to do in Java for some reason. Of course such an aspect is not a very appealing one.

General outline

  • Mapping Java methods to PHP functions via annotations
    • Annotations enrich the Java method with the following information
      • PHP file name
      • Function name
      • Function parameters (from the list the Java method accepts)
      • Object name (if function not used)
      • Object method (if function not used)
      • Object method parameters (from the list the Java method accepts)
  • PHP discovery system
    • By default searching PHP files from the project's workspace
    • Configurability to provide predefined locations to speedup the scanning
    • Provide plugins with the option of defining the PHP src folders in plugin.xml
  • PHP reflection system
    • Provide an easy way of writing the annotations
    • Discovered PHP files are parsed and functions/objects/methods used for annotations' auto-completion
  • PHP console for quick testing
  • General ScriptEngine support
  • PHP scripting support
    • Plugin with the needed libraries for parsing PHP


  • Core plugin aka Scripting Bridge
    • Able to use scripting languages from Java as regular Java objects
  • An Eclipse Plugin
    • Able to develop Eclipse plugins using scripting languages
  • Update site
    • Install the Eclipse plugin
  • Quercus Bundle
    • Standalone SVN trunk builds of Quercus (GPL)
    • SF project

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