Moving away from Xojo

hear, hear ! HEAR !!! (omnis)

I just tried to get some more information, technically and about pricing. Nothing about pricing, not much more details… therefore, no option for me - seems that ‘going Swift’ is the way to go for me. More complicated to step into - but more safe

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Omnis is taking the approach of building essentially a web app and then running it in a browser control on mobile and desktop I think. However this is probably the best approach for a high amount of code and design sharing between platforms. One hopes they make some effort to provide access to OS services and APIs on those platforms. But the downside is you are not going to get a fully native look and feel, regardless.

They are using JavaScript for the language. Logical choice for them, not my personal fave but I could live with it.

The open questions as you point out are, if they are not mentioning price it’s probably high (one of those “if you have to ask, you can’t afford it” kinds of things) and it’s hard to tell how constrained you are by their environment and framework if you want to do more creative / pro-level things.

They also seem to be explicitly targeting citizen devs, which is fine, but then as a professional I probably have to accept more limitations than I’d prefer.

ETA: if you really study their description of the latest release enhancements and the limitations of their community edition, they do offer some degree of access to local OS resources on desktop and mobile and they probably have a per-user licensing model at least as an option. They mention a “thick client” option in connection with non-web deployments.

Some licensing info here: FAQs - Omnis

Which platforms are you developing for? (I’m guessing macOS and iOS)

I am using applications I created with xojo on macOS and Windows. I got some applications on iOS - but those are FileMaker Go (running locally, no internet-connection)

My idea for using xojo came from my personal needs - as a FileMaker developer who is unsure about the future of FM…

Since I’m on macOS and iOS: Yes, target would be the Apple platform. The reason for looking for another IDE is the fact that xojo became worse during the last versions and that I lost all resources because they are too old…

Staying on Apple platform you have all you need on Board with Apple Xcode, Swift, SwiftUI. Best decision in my eyes.


I switched from Xojo to Vala and GTK as I’m primarily a Linux user now after many years of using Mac.
If I was only targeting Mac I probably would’ve bit the bullet and learnt Swift but Vala and GTK are meeting my needs for Linux desktop, Mac desktop, Windows desktop and web apps. If people are interested I have thought about documenting the move and more about Vala in a blog.
I’ve found the move quite straightforward and I’m not working around stuff all the time.


Yes, it sounds interesting. Is there a Windows option for development?

I assume there’s no GUI UI designer? But it would still be interesting to see some of it in action.

You can install the required dev tools and use VSCode on Windows, I’ve installed and configured it once. There are several things to install - I’ll find the instructions I used.

There’s a GUI designer for GTK3 (Glade), I’ve read somewhere that there’s a partly developed tool for GTK4. I’m part way through building a tool to speed up UI design in Vala with GTK4 which I’ll release once in a capable state - I liked Xojos simple drag drop UI builder!

Vala codes look like Java

yes they tried to make it nice but with GTK. If that would look better and there wouldn’t be that platform problems I would say: good choice. But still, people shall use it. All C like languages looking like Java.

so I can probably learn C if I really want to… I do remember learn C when I am doing my computer diploma in Malaysia. Pascal, Cobol and C

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you can learn all that things of you want to. That I have learned when helping a bit with Java and JavaFX, you are able to learn. Defititely :slight_smile:

Yes, Vala’s syntax was influenced by both Java and C# .

I’d also be interested. After lengthy consideration of the options (which I may document here at some point), I’m likely moving toward the Vala/GTK ecosystem. My main questions are about how well it works for Windows and Mac (my primary targets) given that it comes from a Linux/X starting point.


I also had concerns about how well it would work on Windows and macOS being GNOME projects . I’ll make setting up the development environments on these OSes and cross platform development for these OSes the first posts.


As far as I can see it is less complex to build simple Java Applications and do package on the different platforms to get the needed binaries of the project. At least for Desktop with JFormdesigner Plugin of with the UI Designer if IntelliJ it is possible (JFromdesigner costs 50 Bucks a year as an IntelliJ Addon and second year around 30 or 40). That would be a toolchain with a modern GUI using FLATLAF UI. And it is described with tons of how to’s in popular internet sites. I guess that would be less complex and not that crime you do with the GTK Components to the users eye’s. But that is only what I mean.

The other side is that you can build a Java Swing Hello world with installs within less then ten minutes on a PC or Mac or a Linux Device.

Speaking about Mobile you can use your Logic and write a mobile App for Android and IOS with CodenameOne which comes integrated with a Simulator.

For Web you can use Vaadin. That has really improved capabilities and security. But: only my impressions. I can not see any good in Vala. Since it is builded for what it is: a Gnome GTK Builder and it is enhanced Swith a few Libs for other OSS’es it is still not really made for cross platform. And it is Definitely a long term tool while the Desktop Development of the Vala community is always for Gnome technologies first.

This Setup would be a complete Toolchain for Desktop, Web and IOS/Android. Also possible and reliable since 20 years.