Less screen space waste in Eclipse 4.4

I’m really happy to report that we managed to solve Reduce whitespace usage in the default Eclipse themes . Such bugs are difficult to get agreement upon, as they are “opinion” bugs.

I think the result is really good. If you fire up the next Eclipse 4.4 milestone build, Eclipse uses much less whitespace and leaves more space for the important content.

Java - test-src-test-Main.java - vogella Development Tools _010

Compare this to the old theme configuration.

Java - test-src-test-Main.java - vogella Development Tools _009

While this is on a technical level a trivial change, I hope that this will improve the initial perception people have in using Eclipse.

A big thanks to Daniel Rolka, Robin Stocker and Dani Megert for doing the majority of the work and a big thanks all involved parties in the Bug report to get this change accepted.

About Lars Vogel

Lars Vogel is the founder and CEO of the vogella GmbH and works as Eclipse and Android consultant, trainer and book author. He is a regular speaker at international conferences, He is the primary author of vogella.com. With more than one million visitors per month this website is one of the central sources for Java, Eclipse and Android programming information.
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8 Responses to Less screen space waste in Eclipse 4.4

  1. Jérôme says:


    It looks like you also changed the ugliness of the toolbar.
    Do you know if it is possible to configure its height?


  2. Lars Vogel says:

    Jérôme, the toolbar was adjusted by Robin in another commit. AFAIK you can adjust the height, but would run into issues with the icons.

  3. Jérôme says:

    Anyway, it’s nice to see people working on UI issues. UI really matters.


  4. Daniel Svensson says:

    It would be nice if the editor tabs may be hidden as well. I always use the “Open Type” (Cmd+Shift+T on OS X) to change file since you never know what tabs are shown when moving the cursor to the tabs area if you have more tabs open than available screen space. It would also be nice to be able to connect showing/hiding of the icon toolbar to a specific mode since it’s not needed when writing code (and then use keybindings for switching mode), same applies for the statusbar at the bottom…. at least menu is hidden when in fullscreen on OS X. Anyways.. nice work, less wasted space is always win, but don’t stop there, distraction free coding ftw! 🙂

  5. Xavier Raynaud says:

    nice work ! many thanks !

  6. James Blackburn says:

    Eclipse 4 screen wastage is a big bug-bear for me. Thanks for tackling this!

    Compared to 3.x which we’re still using, eclipse 4 appears to waste a load of space around tab-names and borders. And the visual cues are less well-defined: instead of horizontal barriers between the tool bar actions in the views, there’s just whitespace which rubs in how much dead space there is…

    Compare to Eclipse 3.x:

    Visual Studio, whil it isn’t beautiful:

    does a much better job of minimizing wastage and maximizing your portal onto the thing that matters — the code!

    I can understand this is divisive. How hard would it be to have a theme which minimized the dead-space? Could this be an option?

  7. Lars Vogel says:

    @James: Please feel free to suggest changes in the CSS files, the platform team is open for improvement suggestions. See http://www.vogella.com/tutorials/Eclipse4CSS/article.html for a getting started guide.

  8. Eman says:


    Does eclipse “Find/Replace” also change to like Find in intellij that is embeded inside the IDE and automatically search the keyword, eclipse open it another separate window?


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