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What Is Netbeans and What Can It Do For You?

written by: Niki Fears•edited by: Linda Richter•updated: 9/25/2008

Find out what exactly what NetBeans is and how you can use it to build great applications.

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    NetBeans is a great little tool for those who build web applications and for software developers. It is an IDE ( Integrated Development Environment ) which is available as open source software. Best of all, you can run this program on most operating systems including Windows, Linux, Mac OS X and Solaris.

    What Can It Do?

    With NetBeans you can develop applications for use via the desktop or on the web. You can also develop software for use with mobile devices. The applications can be developed with NetBeans using a variety of coding languages including Java, Ruby (with support for Rails), and C/C++. The feature rich software gives you great options and visual abilities that allow you to not only create the applications that you want but to view them and perform testing to work out all of the kinks and bugs in your software.

    NetBeans also has a wide array of various plug-ins that are available to developers as well. For a longer list of features and specifications about what this handy tool can do go to: http://www.netbeans.org/features/index.html

    Where Can You Get It?

    As I have already mentioned, the NetBeans developing software is open source, so you can get it absolutely free. The Full download is going to be about 219 MB; however, if you only want NetBeans for a particular scripting language such as C and C++ or Ruby and Rails then you can download that specific portion of the program and the download will be a lot smaller from around 20-30 MB depending on which application you wish to install.

    You can download NetBeans from their site at: http://download.netbeans.org/netbeans/6.1/final

    What About Support and Tutorials?

    The NetBeans website also offers you tons of information and resources on using NetBeans and learning the basic functions of each of the scripting languages that you can employ with the NetBeans application builder including a quick start guide that you can use to help you get a feel for the use and functionality of building software using NetBeans. The NetBeans community can also offer useful resources for helping you to learn NetBeans as well as offering tools and feedback to help you grow and develop your applications and NetBeans skills.

    If you have been looking for a usable and affordable IDE program to help you build your own applications then give NetBeans a try. It is a great tool and you can not beat the price!