p2, your savior or your achilles heel? Everything an Eclipse team needs to know about p2 at EclipseCon 2011

slides available !!!


Pascal and Ian created this presentation to explain what are the things developers should not do with p2.

  1. Move / remove files on disk : for examples jars i the plugins folder; better than this : let p2 manage your install, so that when you remove a plugin, p2 will remove the now un-needed dependencies
  2. unzip your plugins  over Eclipse; instead provide a p2 repository, that could be downloaded as a zip; by the way do not use the dropins folder; because the scan of plugins inside is so slow !
  3. Replace published content, when you republish the exact same version of the same bundle (1.0.0.HEAD); p2 will not be able to distinguish it and do the updates (p2 works with bundle name + version); you have to provide version/id pairs immutable
  4. Alter a released repository : people are consuming your content, so do their headless builds; a released repository SHOULD NEVER change; you can use composite repos to change content
  5. Don’t categorize things; better than this, you should always categorize your repositories with a meaningful name: if you don’t like the category, during build, you can change it
  6. Ignore your version ranges : for example do not specify too strict versions, if it works with 3.6.1 , it should work with 3.6.2 too ! Think about versioning your packages, bundles and features, with ranges such as : [3.6.0,3.7.0]
  7. Don’t use API : be mindful of what you use, do not use the internal packages, ask on the p2-dev mailing list
  8. Use the metadata generator ; instead use the publisher (p2.publisher.UpdateSitePublisher), tycho and PDE already use it.
  9. Use legacy update sites : they do not include complete metadata, so P2 will download every feature to regenerate the complete metadata
  10. Spell it P2, the name is p2

Great presentation ! very lively and insightful !


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