How do I work with development build on macOS – NetBeans 11.0

Whenever you download NetBeans 11.0 (development version) from the official page here: Download, you end up with a zip file that contains working copy of NetBeans. It looks like this

|-- CREDITS.html
|-- README.html
|-- apisupport
|-- bin
|-- enterprise
|-- ergonomics
|-- etc
|-- extide
|-- groovy
|-- harness
|-- ide
|-- java
|-- javafx
|-- licenses
|-- nb
|-- netbeans.css
|-- php
|-- platform
|-- profiler
|-- webcommon
`-- websvccommon

If you want to run it, you can make a symlink to netbeans/bin/netbeans, you can open the directory and double-click the executable file, you can put in on PATH. You have numerous options. However, macOS users (like me) are used to run everything from /Applications folder. This is why I have prepared very simple setup for my testing environment.

I have this small empty structure inside /Applications
|-- Contents
|   |-- Info.plist
|   |-- MacOS
|   `-- netbeans.content
`-- Icon\r

Info.plist is just an empty shell that is supposed to make macOS happy with application structure.

> cat Info.plist

More interesting part of this “wrapper” lays here MacOS/NetBeans. As you can see, I simply run whatever comes bundled inside development version of NetBeans.

> cat MacOS/NetBeans
#!/usr/bin/env bash

ABSPATH=$(cd "$(dirname "$0")"; pwd)


All I have to do, each time new version of NetBeans is ready, is drag and drop content of zip file inside /Applications/ Since now, I can run NetBeans directly from /Applications folder.

If you don’t want to waste your time reinventing the wheel, you can always download “empty shell” here: Download

After you open it, just drag and drop NetBeans inside /Application. Then, make sure to right click it and choose: Show Package Contents. Navigate to Contents -> netbeans.contents. Drop here the whole content of netbeans directory after unpacking development version of NetBeans.