Project Plan For PDE - Plugin Development Environment, version Juno

Introduction

Last revised 16:00 ET June 5, 2012. ((new) marks interesting changes since the previous draft of May 3, 2012.)

Please send comments about this plan to the eclipse-dev@eclipse.org developer mailing list.

This document lays out the feature and API set for the next feature release of the Eclipse SDK after 3.7, designated release 4.2 and code-named Juno. This release is occurring simultaneously with the 3.8 platform release. The 4.2 release is a mature platform release containing significant new feature work, while the 3.8 release focuses on stability and bug fixes.

Plans do not materialize out of nowhere, nor are they entirely static. To ensure the planning process is transparent and open to the entire Eclipse community, we (the Eclipse Project PMC) post plans in an embryonic form and revise them throughout the release cycle.

The first part of the plan deals with the important matters of release deliverables, release milestones, target operating environments, and release-to-release compatibility. These are all things that need to be clear for any release, even if no features were to change.

The remainder of the plan consists of plan items for all of the sub-projects under the top level Eclipse Project. Each plan item covers a feature or API that is to be added to the Eclipse Project deliverables, or some aspect of the Eclipse Project that is to be improved. Each plan item has its own entry in the Eclipse bugzilla database, with a title and a concise summary (usually a single paragraph) that explains the work item at a suitably high enough level so that everyone can readily understand what the work item is without having to understand the nitty-gritty detail.

Not all plan items represent the same amount of work; some may be quite large, others, quite small. Some plan items may involve work that is localized to a single component; others may involve coordinated changes to several components; other may pervade the entire SDK. Although some plan items are for work that is more pressing than others, the plan items appear in no particular order.

With the previous release as the starting point, this is the plan for how we will enhance and improve it. Fixing bugs, improving test coverage, documentation, examples, performance tuning, usability, etc. are considered routine ongoing maintenance activities and are not included in this plan unless they would also involve a significant change to the API or feature set, or involve a significant amount of work. The intent of the plan is to account for all interesting feature work.

The current status of each plan item is noted:

  • Committed plan item - A committed plan item is one that we have decided to address for the release.
  • Proposed plan item - A proposed plan item is one that we are considering addressing for the release. Although we are actively investigating it, we are not yet in a position to commit to it, or to say that we won't be able to address it. After due consideration, a proposal will either be committed or deferred.
  • Deferred plan item - A reasonable proposal that will not make it in to this release for some reason is marked as deferred with a brief note as to why it was deferred. Deferred plan items may resurface as committed plan items at a later point.

Release Deliverables

The release deliverables have the same form as previous releases, namely:

  • Source code release for all Eclipse Project deliverables, available as versions tagged "R4_2" in the Eclipse Project Git repositories.
  • Eclipse SDK (runtime binary and SDK for Equinox[*], Platform, JDT, and PDE) (downloadable).
  • Eclipse Platform (runtime binary and SDK for the Equinox[*] and Platform only) (downloadable).
  • Eclipse RCP (runtime and source repositories for the Rich Client Platform) (downloadable).
  • Eclipse JDT (runtime and source repositories for the Java Development Tooling) (downloadable).
  • Eclipse PDE (runtime and source repositories for the Plug-in Development Environment) (downloadable).
  • Eclipse SDK Examples (downloadable).
  • SWT distribution (downloadable).

* The Equinox Project is part of the top level RT Project. A significant portion of the Equinox deliverables are consumed and redistributed as part of the Eclipse Project's SDK, Platform, and RCP deliverables.

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Release Milestones

Release milestones will be occurring at roughly 6 week intervals, and will be aligned with the Juno Simultaneous Release train.

M108/05/2011
4.2M1
M209/16/2011
4.2M2
M310/28/2011
4.2M3
M412/09/2011
4.2M4
M501/27/2012
4.2M5
M603/16/2012
4.2M6 (API Freeze)
M705/04/2012
4.2M7 (Feature Freeze)

Individual, milestone level plans for the components that make up the Eclipse Project can be found on the Eclipse Project Juno Plan page on the Eclipse wiki.

Our target is to complete 4.2 in late June 2012, in alignment with Juno. All release deliverables will be available for download as soon as the release has been tested and validated in the target operating configurations listed below.

Dates for builds and test passes after M7 are available in the Eclipse 4.2 endgame plan.

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Target Environments

In order to remain current, each Eclipse Project release targets reasonably current operating environments.

Most of the Eclipse SDK is "pure" Java code and has no direct dependence on the underlying operating system. The chief dependence is therefore on the Java Platform itself. Portions are targeted to specific classes of operating environments, requiring their source code to only reference facilities available in particular class libraries (e.g. J2ME Foundation 1.1, J2SE 1.4, Java 5, etc).

(new) In general, the 4.2 release of the Eclipse Project is developed on a mix of Java SE 6 and Java SE 7 VMs. As such, the Eclipse SDK as a whole is targeted at all modern, desktop Java VMs. Most functionality is available for Java SE 6 level development everywhere, and extended development capabilities are made available on the VMs that support them.

Appendix 1 contains a table that indicates the class library level required for each bundle.

There are many different implementations of the Java Platform running atop a variety of operating systems. We focus our testing on a handful of popular combinations of operating system and Java Platform; these are our reference platforms. Eclipse undoubtedly runs fine in many operating environments beyond the reference platforms we test. However, since we do not systematically test them we cannot vouch for them. Problems encountered when running Eclipse on a non-reference platform that cannot be recreated on any reference platform will be given lower priority than problems with running Eclipse on a reference platform.

Eclipse 4.2 is tested and validated on the following reference platforms (this list is updated over the course of the release cycle):

Operating System Version Hardware JRE Windowing System
Windows 7 x86 32-bit Oracle Java 7 Update 2
Oracle Java 6 Update 27
IBM Java 6 SR9
Win32
x86 64-bit
XP x86 32-bit
x86 64-bit
Red Hat Enterprise Linux 6 x86 32-bit Oracle Java 7 Update 2
Oracle Java 6 Update 27
IBM Java 6 SR9
GTK
x86 64-bit
Power 64-bit IBM Java 6 SR9
SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 11 x86 32-bit Oracle Java 6 Update 27
IBM Java 6 SR9
GTK
x86 64-bit
Power 64-bit IBM Java 6 SR9
Ubuntu Long Term Support 10.04 x86 32-bit Oracle Java 6 Update 27
IBM Java 6 SR9
GTK
x86 64-bit
Oracle Solaris 11 x86 32-bit Oracle Java 6 Update 27 GTK
SPARC 32-bit
HP-UX 11i v3 ia64 32-bit HP-UX Java 6 Update 10 GTK
IBM AIX 7.1 Power 64-bit IBM Java 6 SR9 GTK
Apple Mac OS X 10.6 Universal 32-bit Apple Java 10.6 Update 5 Cocoa
Universal 64-bit

As stated above, we expect that Eclipse works fine on other current Java VM and OS versions but we cannot flag these as reference platforms without significant community support for testing them.

Internationalization

The Eclipse SDK is designed as the basis for internationalized products. The user interface elements provided by the Eclipse SDK components, including dialogs and error messages, are externalized. The English strings are provided as the default resource bundles.

Latin-1, DBCS, and BiDi locales are supported by the Eclipse SDK on all reference platforms.

The Eclipse SDK supports GB 18030 (level 1), the Chinese code page standard, on Windows, Linux and the Macintosh.

German and Japanese locales are tested.

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Compatibility with Previous Releases

Compatibility of Release 4.2 with 3.8

Eclipse 4.2 will be compatible with Eclipse 3.8 (and all earlier 3.x versions).

API Contract Compatibility: Eclipse SDK 4.2 will be upwards contract-compatible with Eclipse SDK 3.8 except in those areas noted in the Eclipse 4.2 Plug-in Migration Guide . Programs that use affected APIs and extension points will need to be ported to Eclipse SDK 4.2 APIs. Downward contract compatibility is not supported. There is no guarantee that compliance with Eclipse SDK 4.2 APIs would ensure compliance with Eclipse SDK 3.8 APIs. Refer to Evolving Java-based APIs for a discussion of the kinds of API changes that maintain contract compatibility.

Binary (plug-in) Compatibility: Eclipse SDK 4.2 will be upwards binary-compatible with Eclipse SDK 3.8 except in those areas noted in the Eclipse 4.2 Plug-in Migration Guide . Downward plug-in compatibility is not supported. Plug-ins for Eclipse SDK 4.2 will not be usable in Eclipse SDK 3.8. Refer to Evolving Java-based APIs for a discussion of the kinds of API changes that maintain binary compatibility.

Source Compatibility: Eclipse SDK 4.2 will be upwards source-compatible with Eclipse SDK 3.8 except in the areas noted in the Eclipse 4.2 Plug-in Migration Guide . This means that source files written to use Eclipse SDK 3.8 APIs might successfully compile and run against Eclipse SDK 4.2 APIs, although this is not guaranteed. Downward source compatibility is not supported. If source files use new Eclipse SDK APIs, they will not be usable with an earlier version of the Eclipse SDK.

Workspace Compatibility: Eclipse SDK 4.2 will be upwards workspace-compatible with earlier 3.x and 4.x versions of the Eclipse SDK unless noted. This means that workspaces and projects created with Eclipse SDK 4.1, 4.0, 3.8 .. 3.0 can be successfully opened by Eclipse SDK 4.2 and upgraded to a 4.2 workspace. This includes both hidden metadata, which is localized to a particular workspace, as well as metadata files found within a workspace project (e.g., the .project file), which may propagate between workspaces via file copying or team repositories. Individual plug-ins developed for Eclipse SDK 4.2 should provide similar upwards compatibility for their hidden and visible workspace metadata created by earlier versions; 4.2 plug-in developers are responsible for ensuring that their plug-ins recognize metadata from earlier versions and process it appropriately. User interface session state may be discarded when a workspace is upgraded. Downward workspace compatibility is not supported. A workspace created (or opened) by a product based on Eclipse 4.2 will be unusable with a product based on an earlier version of Eclipse. Visible metadata files created (or overwritten) by Eclipse 4.2 will generally be unusable with earlier versions of Eclipse.

Non-compliant usage of API's: All non-API methods and classes, and certainly everything in a package with "internal" in its name or x-internal in the bundle manifest entry, are considered implementation details which may vary between operating environment and are subject to change without notice. Client plug-ins that directly depend on anything other than what is specified in the Eclipse SDK API are inherently unsupportable and receive no guarantees about compatibility within a single release much less with earlier releases. Refer to How to Use the Eclipse API for information about how to write compliant plug-ins.

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Themes and Priorities

The plan items listed below were defined according to contributor requirements and the Eclipse Themes and Priorities set forth by the Eclipse Requirements Council. Each plan item covers a feature or API that is to be added to the Eclipse Project deliverables, or some aspect of the Eclipse Project that is to be improved. Each plan item has its own entry in the Eclipse bugzilla database, with a title and a concise summary (usually a single paragraph) that explains the work item at a suitably high enough level so that everyone can readily understand what the work item entails.

Although there are three mature projects under the top-level Eclipse Project, there is a significant amount of commonality and shared effort between them. In general, many plan items involve coordinated changes to multiple components, and thus attempting to separate the items into sections based on sub-project leads to artificial distinctions between them (e.g., Platform Text vs. JDT Text, Platform Debug vs. JDT Debug, etc.). As such, this plan covers the work of all mature projects under the top level Eclipse Project.

Not all plan items represent the same amount of work; some may be quite large, others, quite small. Although some plan items are for work that is more pressing than others, the plan items appear in no particular order. See the corresponding bugzilla items for up-to-date status information on ongoing work and planned delivery milestones.

The current status of each plan item is noted:

  • Committed plan item - A committed plan item is one that we have decided to address for the release. In bugzilla, this is reflected by having a concrete target milestone assigned.
  • Proposed plan item - A proposed plan item is one that we are considering addressing for the release. Although we are actively investigating it, we are not yet in a position to commit to it, or to say that we won't be able to address it. After due consideration, a proposal will either be committed or deferred. In bugzilla, such items are reflected by having a target milestone "4.2" or "---" assigned.
  • Deferred plan item - A reasonable proposal that will not make it in to this release for some reason is marked as deferred with a brief note as to why it was deferred. Deferred plan items may resurface as committed plan items at a later point. In bugzilla, such items are reflected by having a target milestone "---" assigned.

Platforms

This work is focused on ensuring that Eclipse takes full advantage of all capabilities of the underlying technologies that it is based on, be they operating system, window system, Java or other. This includes support for native accessibility, internationalization and localization capabilities.

  • Committed
    • Add support for Java SE 7 features. The most recent feature release of Java SE is version 7, which was released on July 28, 2011. This release contains extensions to the Java language, including support for dynamically-typed languages, and other minor language changes (Coin project). Eclipse Java development tooling will include support for compiling, editing, and launching applications for Java 7. [JDT Core, JDT UI] (288548)

      Note: because of the high importance of Java 7 tools to the Eclipse community, we are delivering complete basic Java 7 functionality in Indigo SR1 (September 2011). Further enhancements to Java 7 development tools will continue in the Juno release.
    • ((new) committed) Migrate SWT graphics operations to Cairo. GTK+ is transitioning away from X Window System in favor of Cairo for drawing operations. The GTK+ port of SWT will migrate drawing operations to Cairo in preparation for a future port of SWT to GTK+ 3. [SWT] (354978)
    • ((new) committed) BiDi enhancements. We will invest in ensuring the Eclipse platform remains a first class basis for products supporting bidirectional text (BiDi). Areas of investigation include: support for text with internal structure or syntax including BiDi data, support for text input widgets, and comprehensive support for static complex expressions. [SWT] (359627)
  • Proposed

      None at this time.

  • Deferred
    • Start work on Java SE 8 features. The next Java SE release is version 8, which is currently scheduled for October 2012. This release is expected to contain extensions to the Java language, including support for lambda expressions, default methods, annotations on types, a modularity system and minor language changes. Eclipse Java development tooling will make progress towards compiling, editing and launching applications for Java 8 for those parts which have publicly available specifications. Work in progress will be made available as feature patches for early adopters while we work towards the official Java SE 8 release. [JDT Core, JDT UI] (358387)
    • Adopt new Windows 7 APIs There are a number of Windows 7 APIs that are needed to implement current/modern looking user interfaces. These include: aero glass shell, Direct2D graphics and stylized menus. SWT will add support to take advantage of these APIs. [SWT] (359625)

Robustness

As the basis for the entire Eclipse eco-system, the Eclipse SDK must be robust, flexible and secure. This work will address those issues by providing API for missing or currently internal functionality, and focusing on the issues that affect the stability of the platform.

  • Committed
    • Transition to Git. The Eclipse project will transition its source control system from CVS to Git during this release. This should have little or no effect on end user functionality, but requires changes to the project build infrastructure, tools, and development practices. [All Components] (345479)
    • ((new) committed) Make Eclipse Platform 4 enterprise ready. Version 4 of the Eclipse Platform has had two releases since graduating from the e4 incubator, but was still treated as secondary to the 3.x platform generation. In this release we will take the final steps to make version 4.2 the primary platform for enterprise level adoption. This work includes refactoring and cleanup of the workbench compatibility code, implementing Intro support, improving performance, addressing globalization and accessibility bugs, and regularly running the full suite of Eclipse SDK regression tests against Platform version 4. [Platform UI] (359626)
    • ((new) committed) Build system consolidation. The 3.x and 4.x platform builds currently use different build systems and run on different build hardware. We will consolidate these systems to run all builds on eclipse.org build infrastructure. As part of this process the 4.x build will transition to being the primary Eclipse project build system, with 3.x stream builds performed on a reduced schedule for ongoing maintenance work. [Releng] (355430)
  • Proposed

    None at this time.

  • Deferred

    None at this time.

Ease of Use

The Eclipse platform is not lacking in functionality, but sometimes fails to present that functionality to end users in a way that is easy to discover and use. This theme encompasses work to simplify and improve the end user experience, and to keep up with modern user interface input forms such as multi-touch gestures.

  • Committed
    • Use annotations for null checking. Null reference analysis in Eclipse Java development tooling is currently limited to analysis within the scope of individual methods. We will explore widening this analysis by using annotations to indicate whether particular parameters, return types, and fields are designed to allow null values. [JDT Core, JDT UI] (186342)
  • Proposed

    None at this time.

  • Deferred
    • Support different target platforms per project. The PDE target platform mechanism has seen dramatic improvements with support for provisioning target platforms from remote repositories, local software installs, and feature lists. We will further enhance this system by supporting a different target platform for each project in the workspace. [PDE UI] (159072)

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Appendix Execution Environment by Bundle

In the table below, the "4.2 minimum execution environment" column indicates the minimum Java class library requirements of each bundle for the 4.2 release, where the value is one of:

Entry Meaning
F1.0
J2ME Foundation 1.0 - indicates that the bundle can only be run on Foundation 1.0 or greater. Note that with the exception of some MicroEdition IO classes, Foundation 1.0 is a subset of J2SE 1.3.
F1.1
J2ME Foundation 1.1 - indicates that the bundle can only be run on Foundation 1.1 or greater. Note that with the exception of some MicroEdition IO classes, Foundation 1.1 is a subset of J2SE 1.4.
1.3
J2SE 1.3 - indicates that the bundle can only be run on JSE 1.3 or greater.
1.4
J2SE 1.4 - indicates that the bundle can only be run on JSE 1.4 or greater.
1.5
Java SE 5 - indicates that the bundle can only be run on Java SE 5 or greater.
1.6
Java SE 6 - indicates that the bundle can only be run on Java SE 6 or greater.
n/a Unknown at the time of this revision.

Table of minimum execution environments by bundle. (See also the Equinox Project plan for the execution environment requirements of bundles contributed via that project.)

Bundle

4.2
minimum
execution
environment

com.ibm.icu
1.5
com.jcraft.jsch
1.4
com.sun.el
1.5
javax.annotation
1.5
javax.el
1.5
javax.inject
1.5
javax.servlet
1.6
javax.servlet.jsp
1.6
javax.xml
J2SE-1.2
org.apache.ant
J2SE-1.2
org.apache.batik.css
1.3
org.apache.batik.util
1.3
org.apache.batik.util.gui
1.3
org.apache.commons.codec
F1.0
org.apache.commons.httpclient
F1.0
org.apache.commons.logging
F1.0
org.apache.felix.gogo.command
not specified
org.apache.felix.gogo.runtime
not specified
org.apache.felix.gogo.shell
not specified
org.apache.jasper.glassfish
1.6
org.apache.lucene
1.4
org.apache.lucene.analysis
1.4
org.apache.lucene.core
1.4
org.eclipse.ant.core
1.4
org.eclipse.ant.launching
1.4
org.eclipse.ant.ui
1.4
org.eclipse.compare
1.4
org.eclipse.compare.core
1.4
org.eclipse.compare.win32
1.4
org.eclipse.core.commands
F1.0
org.eclipse.core.contenttype
F1.0
org.eclipse.core.databinding
F1.1
org.eclipse.core.databinding.beans
1.4
org.eclipse.core.databinding.observable
F1.1
org.eclipse.core.databinding.property
F1.1
org.eclipse.core.expressions
F1.0
org.eclipse.core.externaltools
1.4
org.eclipse.core.filebuffers
1.4
org.eclipse.core.filesystem
1.4
org.eclipse.core.jobs
F1.1
org.eclipse.core.net
F1.1
org.eclipse.core.resources
1.5
org.eclipse.core.runtime
F1.0
org.eclipse.core.runtime.compatibility
F1.0
org.eclipse.core.runtime.compatibility.registry
F1.0
org.eclipse.core.variables
1.4
org.eclipse.cvs
not specified
org.eclipse.debug.core
1.4
org.eclipse.debug.ui
1.4
org.eclipse.e4.core.commands
1.5
org.eclipse.e4.core.contexts
1.5
org.eclipse.e4.core.di
1.5
org.eclipse.e4.core.di.extensions
1.5
org.eclipse.e4.core.services
1.5
org.eclipse.e4.ui.bindings
1.5
org.eclipse.e4.ui.css.core
1.5
org.eclipse.e4.ui.css.swt
1.5
org.eclipse.e4.ui.css.swt.theme
1.5
org.eclipse.e4.ui.di
1.5
org.eclipse.e4.ui.model.workbench
1.5
org.eclipse.e4.ui.services
1.5
org.eclipse.e4.ui.widgets
1.5
org.eclipse.e4.ui.workbench
1.5
org.eclipse.e4.ui.workbench.addons.swt
1.5
org.eclipse.e4.ui.workbench.renderers.swt
1.5
org.eclipse.e4.ui.workbench.swt
1.5
org.eclipse.e4.ui.workbench3
1.5
org.eclipse.emf.common
1.5
org.eclipse.emf.ecore
1.5
org.eclipse.emf.ecore.change
1.5
org.eclipse.emf.ecore.xmi
1.5
org.eclipse.help
F1.0
org.eclipse.help.base
1.5
org.eclipse.help.ui
1.4
org.eclipse.help.webapp
1.4
org.eclipse.jdt
not specified
org.eclipse.jdt.annotation
1.5
org.eclipse.jdt.apt.core
1.5
org.eclipse.jdt.apt.pluggable.core
1.6
org.eclipse.jdt.apt.ui
1.5
org.eclipse.jdt.compiler.apt
1.6
org.eclipse.jdt.compiler.tool
1.6
org.eclipse.jdt.core
1.4
org.eclipse.jdt.core.manipulation
1.4
org.eclipse.jdt.debug
1.5
org.eclipse.jdt.debug.ui
1.5
org.eclipse.jdt.doc.isv
not specified
org.eclipse.jdt.doc.user
not specified
org.eclipse.jdt.junit
1.5
org.eclipse.jdt.junit.core
1.4
org.eclipse.jdt.junit.runtime
1.3
org.eclipse.jdt.junit4.runtime
1.5
org.eclipse.jdt.launching
1.5
org.eclipse.jdt.ui
1.5
org.eclipse.jface
F1.1
org.eclipse.jface.databinding
F1.0
org.eclipse.jface.text
1.4
org.eclipse.jsch.core
1.4
org.eclipse.jsch.ui
1.4
org.eclipse.ltk.core.refactoring
1.4
org.eclipse.ltk.ui.refactoring
1.4
org.eclipse.pde
1.4
org.eclipse.pde.api.tools
1.4
org.eclipse.pde.api.tools.ui
1.4
org.eclipse.pde.build
1.4
org.eclipse.pde.core
1.4
org.eclipse.pde.doc.user
not specified
org.eclipse.pde.ds.core
1.4
org.eclipse.pde.ds.ui
1.4
org.eclipse.pde.junit.runtime
1.4
org.eclipse.pde.launching
1.4
org.eclipse.pde.runtime
1.4
org.eclipse.pde.ua.core
1.4
org.eclipse.pde.ua.ui
1.4
org.eclipse.pde.ui
1.4
org.eclipse.pde.ui.templates
1.4
org.eclipse.platform
F1.0
org.eclipse.platform.doc.isv
not specified
org.eclipse.platform.doc.user
not specified
org.eclipse.rcp
not specified
org.eclipse.sdk
not specified
org.eclipse.search
1.4
org.eclipse.swt
F1.0
org.eclipse.team.core
1.4
org.eclipse.team.cvs.core
1.4
org.eclipse.team.cvs.ssh2
1.4
org.eclipse.team.cvs.ui
1.4
org.eclipse.team.ui
1.4
org.eclipse.text
1.4
org.eclipse.ui
F1.0
org.eclipse.ui.browser
1.5
org.eclipse.ui.cheatsheets
1.4
org.eclipse.ui.console
1.4
org.eclipse.ui.editors
1.4
org.eclipse.ui.externaltools
1.4
org.eclipse.ui.forms
1.4
org.eclipse.ui.ide
1.4
org.eclipse.ui.ide.application
1.4
org.eclipse.ui.intro
1.4
org.eclipse.ui.intro.universal
1.4
org.eclipse.ui.navigator
1.4
org.eclipse.ui.navigator.resources
1.4
org.eclipse.ui.net
F1.1
org.eclipse.ui.trace
1.5
org.eclipse.ui.views
1.4
org.eclipse.ui.views.log
1.4
org.eclipse.ui.views.properties.tabbed
F1.0
org.eclipse.ui.win32
1.4
org.eclipse.ui.workbench
1.5
org.eclipse.ui.workbench.texteditor
1.4
org.eclipse.update.configurator
F1.0
org.hamcrest.core
1.5
org.junit
1.3
org.junit4
1.5
org.objectweb.asm
1.3
org.slf4j.api
F1.1
org.w3c.css.sac
F1.0
org.w3c.dom.smil
F1.0
org.w3c.dom.svg
F1.0

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