Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Eclipse Drag-And-Drop Idea

Just realized that the serious usability problems with drag-and-drop in Eclipse has a surprisingly obvious solution!

If you have a large number of files and folders in your project source trees, drag-and-drop is a serious pain in the rear, because you may have to wait for scrolling, which is slow and a bit finicky to control. And if you over-scroll, you have to move the drag to the other end of the scrolled pane. Etcetera. And even remembering the target is difficult.

For moves within the same 'classpath entry' (e.g. src/main/java) there is at least the alternative of typing a new package name -- with auto-completion assisting you -- and then using the quick fix 'move', but for moves between projects, for instance, the problem remains.

However, I just got this really simple and in-hindsight-ly obvious idea: why not open a second 'Navigator' view? Turns out I don't know how to do that. But there is a an almost-as-good solution: the possibility to drag-and-drop into panes of other kinds! At least into the 'Project Explorer', just tried it.

Well, one simple trick closer to peaceful cooperation with Eclipse. Many annoyances remain to be worked around.

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