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Developing Nokia Asha apps on Linux with Netbeans

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This article explains how to use the Nokia Asha SDK 1.0 with Netbeans under Linux.

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Article Metadata
Tested with
Devices(s): Nokia Asha 501
Created: achipa (24 Jul 2013)
Last edited: kiran10182 (31 Oct 2013)



It's possible to use a native Netbeans install on Linux to develop software for the new Nokia Asha Software Platform. When the SDK is properly registered as a Java platform, we can use all the features of the Netbeans IDE, ranging from configuring and building the projects, to debugging and packaging them.



Install the latest Netbeans version available for your platform (Ubuntu shown as an example)

Netbeans install from the Ubuntu Software Center

or from the command line

sudo apt-get install netbeans

If you are on a platform that has an outdated version of Netbeans you can download the Netbeans version provided on the Netbeans project site itself. As an example, Ubuntu 13.04 is shipping with version 7.0.1 while the latest stable version of Netbeans at the time of writing this article was 7.3.1. In this case, make sure you have previously installed a compatible JDK. On Ubuntu, you can do this on the command line with

 sudo apt-get install default-jdk
sh Downloads/

Enabling Java ME

Depending on the version and edition of Netbeans you downloaded and installed, the Java ME plugin might be missing or disabled. You can check this in the Tools -> Plugins submenu as per the screens below

Open Tools... Plugins

Check the installed tab, if you have no active Mobility plugin with a Java ME category, select and install it from the available plugins tab. If the Mobility plugin is not listed in the available plugins tab, make sure the Netbeans distribution source is enabled in the settings tab.

Install Mobility plugin

Adding the Nokia Asha 1.0 SDK as a Java Platform

Adding the SDK as a full Java Platform to Netbeans is crucial to have full IDE functionality. Without this, there is no project documentation, autocomplete, project configuration (add/remove JAR/APIs) and debugging from within the IDE.

  1. Open Tools- >Java platforms
    Open Tools -> Java platforms
  2. Click add platform, and select Java ME CLDC Platform Emulator
    Add platform
  3. Go and select the .wine/drive_c/Nokia/Devices/Nokia_Asha_SDK_1.0 directory from your home, and then Netbeans should detect the details of the platform
    Add platform

If the detection fails (or the platform is shown with a red strikeover after addition), you are most likely missing proper emulator and preverify scripts which are provided on the Linux install wiki page.

Running a project

To verify the functionality, we can open an example that is provided with the Nokia Asha SDK, the Nokia Asha UI Component demos.

Open project

Note that .wine counts as a hidden directory under Linux, and so does not show up by default in the file selector. To avoid manually typing it in, and also to shorten the path when dealing with the examples, it's recommended to softlink the SDK directory into your home directory

ln -s ~/.wine/drive_c/Nokia_Asha_SDK_1.0

After opening the project, we can right click it in the projects tab, click properties and verify under platform that we have the right device and APIs selected

Project properties

If everything looks correct, you should be able to develop, run and debug applications from Netbeans in Linux just as you would under Windows

Project properties


This page was last modified on 31 October 2013, at 20:53.
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