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Installing Headless Buckminster

< To: Buckminster Project

Buckminster is also packaged in a so called 'Headless' command line oriented version suitable for running on remote servers, be invoked from scripts etc. The Headless version is based on Eclipse but only includes what is needed to run as a command line tool. The footprint of the headless version is thus much smaller than for the complete Eclipse IDE.

The Headless version as it is delivered today requires configuration before use. The downloadable version only contains the Buckminster core - i.e. it does not contain any of the optional plugins. They are easy to add, but it requires some work on your part.

Prior to Eclipse 3.5, the headless buckminster uses Eclipse Update Manager to install the required features. Starting with 3.5, this is done with Eclipse p2. Note that it is possible to build for 3.4 using a 3.5 Buckminster.

Buckminster Packaged as an Eclipse Product

This format is for specialized situations; it is called the 'product' format as it is built using the Eclipse Product packaging paradigm. Beyond the fact that is intended as a standalone package, you can view it as a subset of the functionality gained through the update site. Specifically, it is intended to be used in Headless mode situations only (though given it's design it can serve as a foundation for achieveing a graphical startup as well). It only contains the bare essentials to begin with, so before it can be used for anything useful, it needs to be customized by you. The benefit is that you can be very selective on what it contains, and thus bring down the footprint. Actually, it is likely you may wish to use install further Buckminster features from the Buckminster update site.

Product builds are available as zip archives available on our download page.

Note that Buckminster has many possible extension points. This is also true for the Headless framework. In fact, it is entirely possible to use only this framework and produce your very own headless application which has nothing to do with what Buckminster otherwise can do. More on extending the Headless framework here.

Installing versions Eclipse 3.3 or 3.4

You will download a Buckminster product, and then configure it to include what you want.

  1. Goto the Buckminster Downloads Page
  2. Download the latest "" for 3.4
  3. Unpack "" to a location where you want it
  4. On Un*x, make the "buckminster script" executable. "cd buckminster", "chmod +x buckminster"
  5. Remember the "headless update site url" -, as you need it when configuring your headless buckminster
  6. Configure your headless buckminster - it is empty when you get it, so you must do this. See this Sample headless configuration

Installing 3.5 version (and later)

In 3.5, headless buckminster is installed and updated using p2. Instead of downloading the buckminster product, you will start by downloading a headless p2 installer called "director".

  1. Goto the Buckminster Downloads Page
  2. Download the latest ""
  3. Note the p2 site to use - you need this when installing buckminster headless, and when configuring it. Currently it is ""
  4. Unzip the director where you want it, although we only use it for installing buckminster, this is a generic headless p2 installer so may want to use it as an alternative to running the "" embedded in the Eclipse IDE).
  5. Run the director to install Headless Buckminster:
	-r <url to headless repo>
	-d <buckminster install folder>
	-p Buckminster
	-i org.eclipse.buckminster.cmdline.product
	-vmargs -D"<buckminster install folder>/p2"

Please note that <buckminster install folder> have to be an absolute path
  1. Configure your headless buckminster - it is empty when you get it, so you must do this. See this Sample headless configuration, but note that you should use as the repository URL in the install commands. (See bug 269736 for a proposal to be able to skip the repo URL when installing from the repository the product was installed from).

The latest available version of the Buckminster Headless Product for Eclipse 3.5 milestones is only provided as an P2 Installable Unit (IU) from our headless repository.

This was announced here

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