IDE tips and tricks: Improve you efficiency with the Eclipse Quick Access search bar

Posted by Magnus Unemyr on Feb 12, 2015 9:46:00 AM


Eclipse IDE's, like Atollic TrueSTUDIO, are tremendously powerful. By its nature, an Eclipse IDE by far outperforms virtually any other IDE in terms of flexibility and power. And herein lies one of the criticisms of Eclipse – its massive feature-set and flexibility may appear daunting to some new users.

In fact, this is why we spent a lot of time and effort to clean-up the Eclipse GUI in our Atollic TrueSTUDIO IDE, to make it easier to use and reduce the learning curve for new users. This is all well and good, but also the Eclipse community has started to address this problem. For example, by introducing the relatively new Quick Access search bar that is a massive time saver! 


The Quick Access search bar is an edit field in the toolbar, where you can enter any search phrase or keyword. You use it to find GUI objects like menu commands, toolbar buttons, preference settings or docking views.

As you type any search string, the Quick Access search bar shows all the GUI objects that match the criteria, in “real-time”. Type a couple of more characters and the search results list is refined correspondingly “on-the-fly”.

The Quick Access search bar is an enormous time saver when you look for a specific GUI object and can’t find it quickly. Perhaps you want to find a preference setting deeply buried in the configuration dialogs. Or you just want to issue a menu command or toolbar button hidden in the currently active perspective.

For example, in the screenshot above I searched for “SWV” and the Quick Access search bar immediately provides the list of matching docking views, GUI commands and preference settings. Just click on the GUI object in the search result list to open the docking view or preference setting, or to “click” the menu command or toolbar button to perform its action!


Topics: ECLIPSE, Atollic TrueSTUDIO