Wed 10th Jul 2013 at 14:30

Netbeans and Symbolic Links

I have been using NetBeans as my PHP IDE of choice for quite a few years now, ever since Zend turned a glorious Zend Studio (version 5.2) into something bloated, slow and buggy (version 6+).

I work on a Linux/Windows dual boot laptop and a OSX Mac an find that syncronising the projects a doddle. On my laptop I have a shared NTFS partition that houses my NetBeans Projects and allows me to edit the same code whether I be in Windows or Linux at the time. Syncronising between the laptop is a bit more tricky and depending on my mood at the time I will either use the Download poject menu option and download a complete copy from the server, or I will simply SCP the project folders from machine to machine. I have considered using a Samba share on the laptop, but that can be tricky when I wish to reboot the laptop mid way though editig using the Mac.

Anyway, the actually issue I have been having is with one of my Projects. I have been getting the following error repeated for each and every file and folder on the server:

Some parent of file dir/to/file is a symbolic link

I checked the server by SSH'ing in and there are no symbolic links at all. So I started looking on the web to see if I could find out if anyone else was getting this error and not one person reporting this same issue. Ok, there are lots of reports where Netbeans is having issues with symbolic links that are on the actual server, but my server has none.

It then struck me that this issue was only happening whilst I was booted into my linux distro. A little light bulb lit up and a distant memory bubbled to the surface. When I first set up NetBeans on my laptop to share projects between Windows and Linux, I had created a symbolic link in my home directory to point at the NetBeansProjects folder situated on my shared partition.

NetBeansProjects -> /media/Data/NetBeansProjects

"That couldn't be the problem could it" I thought... Indeed it was!


The solution

So, now I had established the problem, I set about solving my problematic project. This required some more digging both on the web and also grep'ing for NetBeansProjects in the ~/.netbeans/7.3.1 folder. In the end I discovered that the file I was after was:


First I changed the recent project line that refered to the problematic project, form




I also made similar changes to a number of other projects that I notice had the same base path.

I retarted NetBeans and now the project competely downloaded without any errors.

But how would I stop this from happening in the future? After all I can be quite forgetful!

The first thing I did was to delete the symbolic link in my home folder,as I now knew that NetBeans did not actually need it and secondly, to allow ease of new project creation I changed 2 more lines in the file:



So from now on, I can just create new projects and they, by default, will be created on my shared folder.

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