Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Launching Multiple Instances of Eclipse on Mac OS X

Doug Schaefer recently griped that Eclipse on Mac "gets no love." I don't really agree in general, but I don't have the time to debate that in detail. I do, however, have the time to provide a simple work-around to one of his gripes, the inability to launch multiple copies of Eclipse simultaneously. As Doug mentions, this is inherent behavior for OS X applications, not an Eclipse-specific problem. But, there's a simple way to launch additional instances if you're willing to perform a few mouse clicks.
The basics:
  1. Right-click (Command+click) on the Eclipse Doc icon and choose Show in Finder.
  2. Right-click on and choose Show Packages Contents.
  3. Navigate to Contents > MacOS directory.
  4. Double-click the eclipse executable there to launch Eclipse. Make sure to select a different workspace than is already open.
Here's a short screencast demonstration (click the image to play):