IDEA Plugin Dev - Setting Up a Development Environment and Creating a Plugin Project

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How to configure the environment of development.


Create a new project and configure the Plugin Sdk

Debugging the core code will only work with the Community Edition because the Ultimate version is closed source. You can use Ultimate to develop the plugin and debug and test the plugin with the Community version.

  • Create a new IntelliJ Platform Plugin project.
    • Select the project type: IntelliJ Platform Plugin.
    • The project SDK is empty, click the new button and select the home directory of the Idea Community edition, just installed
    • Intellij asks you to select the Java SDK, select one and click Ok

Idea New Intellij Platform Plugin Project

  • You got the IntelliJ Platform Plugin configured.

Idea Plugin Sdk

Configure the Plugin SDK source path

:: Create a directory
mkdir d:\git_idea_community
:: Go in it
cd /D d:\git_idea_community
:: Clone the source code 
:: git clone --depth 1 <url> --branch <branch> --single-branch <folder>
git clone --depth 1 git:// -b 143 --single-branch .


  • –depth. Create a shallow clone with a history truncated to the specified number of revisions. The repository is otherwise really 1.73 GiB !
  • –depth 1 retrieve only the data from the last commit. Note to backfill history: “git pull –unshallow”. See documentation
Cloning into '.'...
remote: Counting objects: 90889, done.
remote: Compressing objects: 100% (71743/71743), done.
remote: Total 90889 (delta 21641), reused 58084 (delta 10632)
Receiving objects: 100% (90889/90889), 351.85 MiB | 1.35 MiB/s, done.
Resolving deltas: 100% (21641/21641), done.
Checking connectivity... done.
Checking out files: 100% (78493/78493), done.

  • Configure in the SDK section of the Project Structure

Idea Sourcepath Plugin Sdk

Verify (Plugin Configuration in module)

All plugin configuration are now in a module.

Idea Plugin Configuration

To continue

Documentation / Reference

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