Useful shortcuts in Eclipse and STS

Eclipse and STS are both great IDEs for Java developers. STS stands for Spring Tool Suite and it’s basically an Eclipse that is extended with plugins specifically for development using the Spring framework. Knowing the useful shortcuts can really speed up the coding process. The key combinations presented here are the default ones that come with a fresh install of these tools. Here are some of the most useful ones:

Indent lines: Crtl + I

Click anywhere in a file and pressing this shortcut will indent the lines properly.

Delete current line: Crtl + D

Just move the cursor to the line that you would like to delete and press Crtl + D.

Autocomplete: Crtl + Space

Just start writing any code and press Crtl + Space to get a list of possible variable, field, method, class etc. names that are available at that point.

Rename: Alt + Shift + R

This shortcut opens the rename window for the element that is currently selected, or where you cursor currently is.

Go To Line Number: Crtl + L

This shortcut can come in very useful if you just read a stack trace that told you which line is to be blamed for the exception. Open the file in question, hit Crtl + L, type in the line number and you are immediately taken to the proper row.

Insert blank line after current line: Shift + Enter

Inserts a blank line after the current line. It does not matter where the cursor is, it can even be in the middle of the line. After the insertion the cursor will be at the beginning of the new line.

Insert blank line before current line: Shift + Enter

Inserts a blank line before the current line. It does not matter where the cursor is, it can even be in the middle of the line. After the insertion the cursor will be at the beginning of the new line.

Add / remove single line comments: Crtl + Shift + C

With this shortcut you can add / remove single line comments for the current line or all of the selected lines. When you are commenting multiple lines be careful and always select lines that are all either commented out or not commented out. If you mix these two then you might not get the expected result.

Copy current line below: Crtl + Alt + Down arrow

Very handy shortcut if you have a line of code and need one that is very similar to it. Just stand on the line and hit Crtl + Alt + Down arrow to have a copy of it below it’s current location.

Copy current line above: Crtl + Alt + Up arrow

Same as the previous one but it copies the line above the current line.

Organize import statements: Crtl + Shift + O

Organizes the import statements by removing the unused ones and adding the missing ones. This shortcut also sorts the imports alphabetically.

Format code: Crtl + Shift + F

Formats the selected code block or the whole source file. If some code is selected in the source file, only that part gets formatted. If no selection is made, the whole source file is formatted.

Context menu with possible actions: Alt + Shift + S

Shows a context menu that contains possible actions for editing code (e.g. generate getters and setters).

Generate getters and setters: Alt + Shift + S, R

Generate getters and setters for the fields of the class.

Generate contructor using fields: Alt + Shift + S, O

Generate constructor using fields.

Generate constructor from superclass: Alt + Shift + S, C

Generate constructor from superclass.

Generate hashCode() and equals(): Alt + Shift + S, H

Generate hashCode() and equals() method.

Generate toString(): Alt + Shift + S, S

Generate toString() method.

Close currently viewed file: Crtl + W

The title tells everything. If you realize you no longer need to keep a file open, you can just close it really fast with this key combination.

Open New file/project wizard: Crtl + N

Very useful command. If you need a new class, interface, JSP or anything else, this shortcut will be your friend.

Open project properties: Alt + Enter

Just hit this combination anywhere to open the project properties window for the current project.

Quick System.out.println(): “sysout” + Crtl + Space

To get System.out.println() quickly, just type in “sysout” and after that immediately press Crtl + Space.

  • Elder

    As a formal Netbeans user I found these very useful, thank you for the post!

  • Relevart090

    I’m glad it helped. The shortcut differences between the IDEs can be a bit annoying sometimes, but you can always create your own shortcut profile to keep it consistent 🙂

  • Relevart090

    I have updated the post with some new shortcuts.

  • Mohamed Sobhy

    is there any shortcut for run configuration… ?