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Java® and Flex® Integration Bible by Charles A. Christiansen, Matthew Keefe

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Appendix A. Installing Adobe Flex and Adobe Flex Builder

In This Appendix

  • Downloading Flex and Flex Builder

  • Installing Flex Builder

  • Installing the Flex plug-in

  • Building a sample Flex application

  • Working with the Flex SDK

Before you can start using Flex, you need to install and configure it. There are three options for using Flex. First, you can use the stand-alone Flex Builder application, which is the IDE developed by Adobe, built on the Eclipse framework. Second, if you already use Eclipse, you can install the Flex plug-in, which gives you the same functionality in the editor that you already know. The third and final option is the Flex SDK (command line). The first two options require that you purchase a license from Adobe; the third option, SDK, is free. In fact, Flex (not the builder) is open source and allows the community to submit changes as well as publicly test the functionality. The general advantage of open source is a large support user base that's not restricted to Adobe professionals; the same is true for Flex.

Before installing the applications, let's take a look at some important points for each option.

Flex Builder:

  • Is the self-contained IDE

  • Was developed by Adobe specifically for Flex and ActionScript development

  • Has the ability to load third-party Eclipse plug-ins, such as SVN and debugging tools

Flex (Eclipse plug-in):

  • Leverages existing plug-ins and abilities within the stand-alone Eclipse IDE

  • Is maintained by the Eclipse group

  • Has the ability to integrate with Flex plug-ins ...

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