I was just trying out the latest state of UML tools for Eclipse and gave a look at the apparent industry heavyweight, Omondo. Since the beginning, they always seemed like they would end up on top. So I went and downloaded version 3.2.0.

My initial impression was that this was a quality product and one that I would actually consider buying at work. For home use, I would just stick with the free version. But then I ran into some trouble.

On Omondo’s feature list comparing the free to paid for version, it shows Team solution and that the free edition doesn’t have that. Okay, no problem. I’m not that lazy that I need to have eclipse check out my diagram files for me. I can take the extra step and check them out within Perforce.

But no. They aren’t saying there is no team integration for diagram files. They are saying you can’t use the Team Feature of Eclipse AT ALL! This is even the case in projects that do not use Omondo’s UML diagram tool!

What happens when you open a project that is team managed? It prompts you with a dialog box:

“Shared project “…” is not allowed when using the EclipseUML Free edition.”

What?! This project isn’t even using UML!

Okay, no problem. I’ll just hit okay and skip that.

Unfortunately, there is a bug. That dialog box is repeatedly shown forever. So when you first discover this mistake and hit OK, the dialog box shows again. And again. And again. Even worse, the only way to stop it is to kill eclipse. Thus loosing any unsaved files you were working on.

Absolutely ridiculous! Golden rule #1 for any software developer, don’t mess with my existing system. What gives them the right to say I can’t use the team features of eclipse?

Besides all that crap, Omondo’s tool has problems:

  • It doesn’t come with its own perspective. So you can’t write code and then switch back to the UML version later. Or even when you switch to a different project.
  • The diagram view doesn’t remember or pay attention to perspectives. Follow this: open up the UML diagram view, organize your perspective for optimum view, and finally hit “Window > Save Perspective As…” so you can reuse it. That all works until you switch to another perspective. The UML diagram view shows up in the new perspective you switched to. Like any normal user, you go to close the diagram view. All is fine until you switch back to your newly created “Diagram Perspective.” The UML diagram view is closed here as well. This doesn’t follow normal Eclipse perspective behavior and is severely annoying if you are actually thinking about incorporating this tool into your workflow.
  • There is a severe bug when a class contains an enumerated type. Anytime you move that class on the drawing space to the right, a ton of circular relationships appear. There is no undo to fix it. Instantly, your diagram is corrupt. See the attached screen shots.
  • I was editing a class via source code that was in the diagram. I had collapsed the diagram and was working in the source for about 30 minutes without switching to anything else. Suddenly, eclipse started locking up for 10 – 20 seconds at a time. This was first noticed when I added a new method to the class. Thereafter, anytime I modified that method’s signature and even sometimes the contents of the method. Frustrated, I restarted eclipse. Twice. That didn’t absolve me of the issue. So then I opened up the diagram and sure enough, there are dozens of references pointing back at the class and to another one. See the attached screen shots.

Now here is the final nail in the coffin.

The price for EclipseUML is $2623.92 USD!

Omondo can also be written as OHMYGOD.

A big problem here is not just the price. But its the fact that there is nothing in between the free version and the “second mortgage or my first born son” version. Even working at a very well off company, I could never in my right mind justify buying something like this. ESPECIALLY one that is this BUG RIDDEN!

Here is a video of the dragging issue (You can download the quicktime version at the bottom):

About the Author:

Learned something? Great! Need help on your development project? I'm available for hire:

  • Ruby on Rails
  • iOS Development
  • System Architecture & Performance

Get in touch:

Discussion

  1. Vlad says:

    Hi Folks,

    I am pleased to answer here to this post.

    1. What happens when you open a project that is team managed? It prompts you with a dialog box:
    “Shared project “…” is not allowed when using the EclipseUML Free edition.”
    What?! This project isn’t even using UML!
    Okay, no problem. I’ll just hit okay and skip that.

    This is a free editoon limitation. We tried just to control the uml team work, but it was too easy to use team work with EclipseUML if we don’t stop all Eclipse team work properties. I know this is not cool, but this is the only way to control team work.

    2. It doesn’t come with its own perspective. So you can’t write code and then switch back to the UML version later. Or even when you switch to a different project.

    When codding and modeling within Eclipse, you don’t really need an EclipseUML perspective. Many tools did their own perspective inside Eclipse, we didn’t because we prefer to let Elcipse user decide what they want to see. We can add a modeling perspective, I agree. This is not a big job to do, but nobody asked for it before you.

    3.The diagram view doesn’t remember or pay attention to perspectives. Follow this: open up the UML diagram view, organize your perspective for optimum view, and finally hit “Window > Save Perspective As…” so you can reuse it. That all works until you switch to another perspective. The UML diagram view shows up in the new perspective you switched to. Like any normal user, you go to close the diagram view. All is fine until you switch back to your newly created “Diagram Perspective.” The UML diagram view is closed here as well. This doesn’t follow normal Eclipse perspective behavior and is severely annoying if you are actually thinking about incorporating this tool into your workflow.

    I tried it, saved a perspective then open it again. It worked well with our latest EclipseUML 2007 Europa Free Edition.

    4.There is a severe bug when a class contains an enumerated type. Anytime you move that class on the drawing space to the right, a ton of circular relationships appear. There is no undo to fix it. Instantly, your diagram is corrupt. See the attached screen shots.

    I tried the EclipseUML 2007 Europa Ediiton. I can find this bug anymore

    5. I was editing a class via source code that was in the diagram. I had collapsed the diagram and was working in the source for about 30 minutes without switching to anything else. Suddenly, eclipse started locking up for 10 – 20 seconds at a time. This was first noticed when I added a new method to the class. Thereafter, anytime I modified that method’s signature and even sometimes the contents of the method. Frustrated, I restarted eclipse. Twice. That didn’t absolve me of the issue. So then I opened up the diagram and sure enough, there are dozens of references pointing back at the class and to another one. See the attached screen shots.

    The method signature bug was a really nasty bug in the Eclipse 3.2 version. We are sorry, but this bug was made by some members of the team who left the company.
    We noticed this bug later and fixed it in the EclipseUML 2007 builds. Many sorry about this bug !!!

    Please note that our pricing changed in June. It is not anymore 2600 USD, but $ 3,490 now.
    We are sorry, but we added new features to our tools, and still have many many new customer purchasing at the new price.

    ————————————
    Vlad Varnica
    OMONDO
    Eclipse and OMG member
    French Java Usergroup coordinator
    22, Leafield Rise – Two Mile Ash
    Milton Keynes, MK8 8BU – UK
    ————————————

Leave a Comment