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Essential Tools Every Professional Java Developer Should Know

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As you know, a professional software developer these days has to use a whole bunch of tools in his daily work, besides the programming language itself and the IDE. And in order to be competitive in the job market, it is highly advisable for you to at least be familiar with these tools and to know how to use them. That’s why we decided to make this list of the main additional tools Java developers are using in their daily work, based on expert opinions and the frequency of their mentions on websites and message boards for developers. Essential Tools Every Professional Java Developer Should Know - 1

Tools Java developers should know (and use)

1. Version control systems.

Knowing how to effectively use version control systems and source code repositories is pretty much essential for a professional software developer today. In the source control domain, Git and GitHub are two of the most popular tools.

Git is a free and open source distributed version control system designed to handle everything from small to very large projects with speed and efficiency. Even though there are multiple other source control systems available to developers, such as TFS, Perforce, and SVN, Git is considered to have a number of advantages over them. Git was built to work on the Linux kernel, meaning that it was made to effectively handle large repositories. Git is written in C, reducing the overhead of runtimes associated with higher-level languages, with speed and performance being its primary design goal. Also, Git has the support of a branching model. It allows and encourages developers to have multiple local code branches that can be entirely independent of each other. The creation, merging, and deletion of those lines of development takes seconds.

GitHub is a code hosting platform for version control and collaboration. It lets software developers work together on projects from anywhere. GitHub includes a distributed version control and source code management (SCM) functionality of Git, plus a number of other features, such as feature requests, task management, bug tracking, continuous integration, etc.

2. Issue tracking and project management.

Jira is the most popular nowadays tool used by developers for bug tracking, issue tracking, and project management. Originally, Jira was designed as a bug and issue tracker, but soon evolved into a powerful work management tool for all kinds of use cases, from requirements and test case management to agile software development. Jira is written in Java. According to Atlassian, the developer of this tool, Jira is used for issue tracking and project management by over 180,000 people in 190 countries.

Backlog is an all-in-one project management tool for software development teams that includes functions such as issue tracking, Git hosting, version control, and Wiki. Other Jira alternatives include Trac, Redmine, and Asana.

3. Docker.

Docker is an open platform for developing, shipping, and running applications. Docker enables you to separate your applications from infrastructure so you can deliver software quickly. Docker was designed to make it easier to create, deploy, and run applications by using containers. Containers allow a developer to package up an application with all of the parts it needs, such as libraries and other dependencies, and deploy it as one package. Docker also includes a tool that allows developers to automatically assemble a container from their source code, with full control over application dependencies, build tools, packaging, etc.

4. Code editors.

Every developer should know at least one code editor, they say. There are multiple code editors available and widely used by programmers today, here are several of the most popular ones.

Visual Studio Code is a streamlined code editor with support for development operations like debugging, task running, and version control. It aims to provide the tools a developer needs for a quick code-build-debug cycle and leaves more complex workflows to fuller featured IDEs, such as Visual Studio IDE.

Atom is an open-source text and source code editor that was developed by GitHub. Supports plug-ins written in JavaScript, and embedded Git Control.

Brackets is an open-source text editor created mostly for web developers and front-end developers. This app simplifies the process of coding, allowing coders to share their work through various platforms. The Brackets app has been specifically designed for working in HTML, CSS, and JavaScript.

5. Continuous Integration tools.

Jenkins is an open source automation server written in Java that allows developers to reliably build, test, and deploy their software with continuous integration and continuous delivery of projects, regardless of the platform.

Buddy is another well-known continuous integration and delivery software tool. Claims to be 87% faster for CI/CD adoption time compared to other tools.

TeamCity is a general-purpose CI/CD solution that allows the most flexibility for all sorts of workflows and development practices. The Projects Overview lets you quickly check the status of your builds, see what triggered them, download the latest build artifacts, and more.

6. Kite.

Kite is an AI-powered autocomplete coding assistance plugin for over 16 programming languages and 16 IDEs, featuring Multi-Line Completions. Works 100% locally.

7. Excel.

Many experts believe that Microsoft Excel also should be in this list, as it remains to be quite popular and used for multiple different purposes other than spreadsheets. Excel can be a powerful data visualization and analysis tool.

8. Wiki knowledge management tools.

And finally, knowing how to effectively document information is also quite important in a developer's work, so it wouldn’t hurt to be familiar with some Wiki knowledge management tools. Such as the following.

Confluence wiki software is used by development teams for various purposes, from document creation and management to project collaboration. Confluence is written in Java.

DokuWiki is a simple and versatile open source wiki software that doesn't require a database. Popular for its clean and readable syntax, the ease of maintenance, backup and integration features.

Helpjuice is a knowledge base platform focused on helping companies to organize their customer support collaboration between the teams. What you think, did we miss something? Do you have a favourite tool to add to this list? Let us know in the comments section below.
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