XP installation/debugging prblms/other issues

2006-03-09
2013-05-20
  • Amir E. Aharoni

    Amir E. Aharoni - 2006-03-09

    Hi everyone,

    Some experiences of installing Eclipse and EPIC.

    My background: I know Perl well and i know some Java. I work mostly on Windows and a little Linux. This story

    relates to WinXP.

    I installed Eclipse 3.1.2. Then i installed EPIC 0.3 using Eclipse's Help->Software Updates. I also installed

    PadWalker 1.0 from CPAN, using Microsoft nmake (perl Makefile.PL/nmake/nmake test/nmake install). I created a very

    simple Perl project with one file that defines a scalar variable and prints Hello World. Then i tried to debug it.

    Because it was essentially the first time i used Eclipse i got terribly confused with all the views and perspectives

    - i'm used to MS Visual Studio and NetBeans and the terminology and the GUI paradigms are quite different there ...

    But i can get used to it.

    Anyway, trying to debug was a pain. All the debug toolbar buttons (step in, step out etc.) were grayed out. I read
    "EPIC's User Guide" and also the EPIC guides on the IBM website but it didn't help. I looked through the EPIC Help

    forum and saw that many people have problems with debugging. I tried replacing the PadWalker with the precompiled

    one from your site and it didn't help either. I also tried to add -d as an artument to the debugging configuration,

    and it didn't help either.

    I was about to ask for help on the forum, but then i looked to the main page again and found that the testing

    version 0.3.12 is supposed to make the debugger work on Eclipse 3.1. So i tried installing it, again using Help-

    >Software Updates. I feared that i will receive errors about different plug-in versions or something in that vein,

    but the installation worked smoothly and voila - the debugger started to work. (I'd say that it's rather weird to

    call a version with a dysfunctional debugger "stable", but maybe i'm just a newbie...)

    Later i also tried to install PadWalker 1.0 that i compiled myself and it works well (`my' variables show up in the

    variables view).

    Now i have some more questions, though:

    1. Isn't there a Watch view that all graphical debuggers have? A view where i can manually select the variables to

    show and to change their values on the fly?

    2. The Perl Expression View - what is it supposed to be? I thought that it would be something like a Watch view. I

    tried to write expressions there and all i get is output like <Command(11) finished>. What is that view supposed to

    do?

    3. I jump unexpectedly from perspective to perspective. For example: I manually switch to the "Debug" perspective,

    start debugging, do a couple of "Step Over"'s and the perspective suddenly changes to the "Perl" perspective. Do i

    miss something or is it a bug?

    All in all, i've gotta say that despite the strange things and the bugs i listed, EPIC seems quite functional - for

    example, hash references show up nicely with all the referenced values in the variables view (it didn't work with

    tie'd objects, though...)

    That would be it

     
    • Amir E. Aharoni

      Amir E. Aharoni - 2006-03-09

      {SORRY! Earlier i posted it with crappy linebreaks, courtesy of Windows Notepad}

      Hi everyone,

      Some experiences of installing Eclipse and EPIC.

      My background: I know Perl well and i know some Java. I work mostly on Windows and a little Linux. This story relates to WinXP.

      I installed Eclipse 3.1.2. Then i installed EPIC 0.3 using Eclipse's Help->Software Updates. I also installed PadWalker 1.0 from CPAN, using Microsoft nmake (perl Makefile.PL/nmake/nmake test/nmake install). I created a very simple Perl project with one file that defines a scalar variable and prints Hello World. Then i tried to debug it.

      Because it was essentially the first time i used Eclipse i got terribly confused with all the views and perspectives - i'm used to MS Visual Studio and NetBeans and the terminology and the GUI paradigms are quite different there ... But i can get used to it.

      Anyway, trying to debug was a pain. All the debug toolbar buttons (step in, step out etc.) were grayed out. I read "EPIC's User Guide" and also the EPIC guides on the IBM website but it didn't help. I looked through the EPIC Help forum and saw that many people have problems with debugging. I tried replacing the PadWalker with the precompiled one from your site and it didn't help either. I also tried to add -d as an artument to the debugging configuration, and it didn't help either.

      I was about to ask for help on the forum, but then i looked to the main page again and found that the testing version 0.3.12 is supposed to make the debugger work on Eclipse 3.1. So i tried installing it, again using Help->Software Updates. I feared that i will receive errors about different plug-in versions or something in that vein, but the installation worked smoothly and voila - the debugger started to work. (I'd say that it's rather weird to call a version with a dysfunctional debugger "stable", but maybe i'm just a newbie...)

      Later i also tried to install PadWalker 1.0 that i compiled myself and it works well (`my' variables show up in the variables view).

      Now i have some more questions, though:

      1. Isn't there a Watch view that all graphical debuggers have? A view where i can manually select the variables to show and to change their values on the fly?

      2. The Perl Expression View - what is it supposed to be? I thought that it would be something like a Watch view. I tried to write expressions there and all i get is output like <Command(11) finished>. What is that view supposed to do?

      3. I jump unexpectedly from perspective to perspective. For example: I manually switch to the "Debug" perspective, start debugging, do a couple of "Step Over"'s and the perspective suddenly changes to the "Perl" perspective. Do i miss something or is it a bug?

      All in all, i've gotta say that despite the strange things and the bugs i listed, EPIC seems quite functional - for example, hash references show up nicely with all the referenced values in the variables view (it didn't work with tie'd objects, though...)

      That would be it.

      Thanks!

       
      • Jan Ploski

        Jan Ploski - 2006-03-09

        The current so-called "stable" version of EPIC probably qualified as such over a year ago, and even back then "stable" meant "it works satisfactorily on the developer's machine". Also, I doubt that the project as a whole should be classified as Production/Stable.

        I am encouraging the admins to promote testing to "stable" (despite all the known bugs) and release a new "testing" based on the current CVS state.

        To your questions:

        1. There is no Watch view. The view is called "Expressions" in Eclipse parlance and is not currently supported by EPIC.

        2. As far as I can see, if you enter "print 2+2" in the Perl Expression view while a debug session is active and evaluate it, the result will be printed in the Console view. I doubt that it is the intended functionality, but it might prove helpful anyway.

        3. When you start debugging, the perspective switches to Debug. There should be no perspective switches on other occasions. I have never experienced such switches myself.

        Finally, a word of warning. EPIC and especially the debugger are currently not actively developed. You will have to live with the bugs or (better) fix them yourself.

         
    • Amir E. Aharoni

      Amir E. Aharoni - 2006-03-09

      Thank you very much for the reply!

      > When you start debugging, the perspective
      > switches to Debug. There should be no
      > perspective switches on other occasions.
      > I have never experienced such switches myself.

      Well, it does happen to me and YMMV :). For example, it always happens if i start the debugger, then press "Resume" so it will run until the next breakpoint. And it does run until the next breakpoint, but it also changes the perspective to "Perl". And it happens in some other cases too.

      > Finally, a word of warning. EPIC and
      > especially the debugger are currently
      > not actively developed.

      Good to know ... i had a hunch that it might be the case.

      > You will have
      > to live with the bugs or (better) fix
      > them yourself.

      Go figure, i might do just that.

       

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