Java Toolchain question

Now that the new year as rolled around I’m looking into a couple of additional toolchains and Java is on the short list to evaluate. My main tool has been Delphi for GUI Desktop database centric apps. Back in late 2021 thorstenstueker answered a similar question with the following:

" Hi, I can recommend two toolchains for GUI Desktop programming with Java:

  1. IntelliJIdea with JFormdesigner

The bundle IntelliJIdea and JFormdesigner are a perfect working Solution for Java programmers. The Guy Designer (JFormdesigner) works like a charm, nothing blinks, nothing flickers. But: it is somehow less comfortable than Netbeans on one site but more powerful on the other side.

  1. Netbeans

Netbeans with its integrated Swing Designer is really professional builded and has no problems in writing good and reliable Java Software with Swing GUI."

So my question is coming from the Xojo/Delphi RAD mentality has anyone settled on either of these recommendations or have another recommended toolchain? I’m not comfortable with a declarative UI builder but I would be willing to experiment and try to get past my bias against them.


One question: Coming from Delphi background why do you want to switch to JAVA at all?

You can easily switch to FPC with Lazarus for cross platform development or check out CodeTyphon from Pilot Logic.

Lately as most of the commercial VCL developers (like TMS, DevExpress, etc.) has started supporting LCL you can make an easy switch and use the third party components that you may be used to.

That said…
If you are on Windows then check out WinDev or B4J (

Personally I feel WinDev has the most mature set of UI components which are professionally designed and work like a charm across all platforms.

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I feel that Delphi does cross platform very well and it will remain my go to tool for as far out as I can predict the future.

Based on the research I’ve done, I don’t feel that B4X shares code between platforms anyway close to a well as Delphi and WinDev do.

In the near future I expect to be laid up for a month or two and want to do a really deep dive during that time and figure out another tool to add to my skillset. The Primary focus being on GUI/Desktop/Database.

WinDev is already on the deep dive list. I would like to add a second to evaluate and Java seems to be the only other serious contender to me. While evaluating desktop is the primary focus now I want to keep it open ended to cross platform being a possibility down the road. What I’ve seen so far makes WinDev and Java the only others alongside Delphi that are as close to “write once, run anywhere” as you can get.

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I would venture to suggest you to give Golang and Rust a close look.

Also look at Flutter/Dart.

I feel these are picking up steam recently.

Recommendet toolchain for Swing are the two you wrote. For JavaFX you can also use both Toolchains (Netbeans and IntelliJIdea) with SceneBuilder. Both gives you the ability to write any kind of Desktop Software without limitations for all platforms. For me in the most cases is Swing the Toolchain. I am using both IDE’s means Netbeans and also IntelliJ. Sometimes I have to use Eclipse for customer projects. All of this toolchains are running well and with JFormdesigner they are in the right shape to write brilliant UI’s.