30 May 2006

Write Your Own Extension to SQL Developer

SQL Developer is not yet 6 months old, whether you are talking first appearance on OTN in the Early Adopter in late December 2005, or initial production release in March 2006. Already there are four extensions available on external sites. Take a look at the new Extensions Exchange for SQL Developer on OTN and see if there is something there that interests you.

Why not write one of your own? You might have a utility that you use all the time or some functionality that would make your daily tasks easier.

Kris Rice has a few entries on his blog on writing extensions, so take a look there and see if there is something that might trigger an idea or offer some advice. Of course you can also take a look at the extensions written by the JDeveloper team and user-base, as their exchange has been running for a few releases now.

Here are the links to Kris's extension entries:
Have fun.

...and let me know if there is anything you've written that we can add to the site.


Alex Gorbachev said...

Thanks for the post Sue. I was resisting to try SQL Developer until it matures. After so many talks around it I thought it matured enough to try (plus, I saw cool Insider plugin).

So I downloaded it - started no problem. Downloaded and copied Insider and Error Lookup plugins. Restarted SQL Developed and could only find Error Lookup plugin. No way I could find Insider somewhere in the menus. Ok... checked the forum quickly - couldn't find anything relevant. Tried to restart - even Error Lookup has gone.

My conclusion - either it's still not stable enough to use or not intuitive enough to use without thinking (read me is stupid enough to miss something obvious).

And just now finishing this comment I finally located Insider plugin in context menu of connection - I know for sure it wasn't there first time while Error Lookup was still there. Funny but both extensions are "Loaded" in "About" dialog. Strange...

Anyway, good work. Keep it up and getting stable! ;-)

Sue said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Sue said...

Thank you for your comment and feedback. I am glad that you have tried the product at last. I do wish you'd tried it "clean" first. That you'd be able to discern whether it's the product or the extension is the problem!

I have tried other plugins for other products and SQL Developer, and while I am hestitant to blame other software, I have found the different extensions definitely have a different impact. i.e. some are better than others! :-)

Anyway, you should also know that the team is working on making adding Snippets and Extensions more user friendly all the time.

I feel confident that you will find the product grows from stength to strength.

For more help on the Fourth Elephant plugins, do contact them.

Alex Gorbachev said...

In no way I meant to blame anyone or play fingerpointing and sorry if it looked like that. I thought this would be a good example from the fields. :-)
I appreciate a lot the work being done to deliver these products for free to the community. Thanks again and keep it going!
Btw, I am surprised but SQL Developer starts fater that latest versions of TOAD (8+ versions are quite heavy). At least, on my laptop. I will try to keep handy and see if there is anything I miss.

Sue said...

:-) That's me just being a bit sensitive. ALL feedback is always appreciated and we should ensure extensions and products are stable.

Thanks again.

Marcel said...

Sue, thanks for your comment on the talk. You didn't mention the "over 40" remark I made which I thought would be a topic all on its own.

I just got back to Canberra to minus 7c weather and short days (which is probably considered warm for Scotland).
I have written a number of papers (some anon) and I will try and put them up as I do like to rock the boat and get those DBAs and Developers thinking.

One point which I would like to add is that I strongly believe that when it comes to development in Oracle, PL/SQL should be the default choice for all programming, and the developers should have to make a good business case for using anything else, and that case should not start with the line "we don't know PL/SQL we only know product X".

Sue said...

As soon as you have your papers published, let's have those links - I'm sure others will be interested.

Maybe I should write about the over 40's... let me think on that!


Christopher Merry said...

It's good to see all the blogging activity centered around SQL Developer. I'm intrigued by the early popularity of the tool, and I believe the ability to incorporate extensions will generate a good deal of interest. I'm also anxiously awaiting a great, all-in-one resource for developing the extensions. I work almost exclusively in PL/SQL, and there are several features that I would like to add to the IDE. Unfortunately, I know next to nothing about JDeveloper, and I can barely spell Jab...Jov...er...Java! What's it gonna take to get one of you smart developers out there in JDev land to whip up something to help me out? Come on, let me be lazy; don't make me learn the tool and patch together enough info from several sources to do some damage.

On a different note, I'm an instructor for an IT training company, and I decided to be brave and utilize SQL Developer in a PL/SQL class. Barring a couple of bugs (one of which involved clicking the wrong thing at the wrong time and wiped out a package the student had been working on for almost an hour :-0 ), it worked exceedingly well. I only heard "but Toad can do that" a handful of times :)

Sue said...


Thank you for your positive comment and observation. I am hoping to produce an article on "Extensions: Getting started". I too am no Java guru, so let's see what we can do.


Anonymous said...

Sue, I found your blog when I'm searching SQL Developer extension for Subversion. I managed to do your HelloX sample. Do you know how to install Subversion extension on SQL Developer? It's easy with JDeveloper but I have no idea how to do it with SQL Developer. Any idea?

Best regards Miro

miro.masnoglav said...

I found your blog when I was searching for Subversion extension for SQL Developer. I managed to deploy HelloX sample to SQL Developer but I don't have any idea how to do it with Subversion extension. It's easy to install Subversion extension on JDeveloper. Do you know is it possible to install it on SQL Developer and how? Thx for any help.

Sue said...


For more complex queries and extensions you should post queries on the SQL Developer Forum

However, as far as the Subversion Extension, JDeveloper has a support for version control tools tools such as Subversion. The SQL Developer team are currently working on support for Subversion in SQL Developer. This should be available in the next release.