Microsoft has released an updated preview of the Windows Azure Plugin for Eclipse with Java.
The Microsoft Open Technologies Inc team has been listening to testers of the technology (they really ARE a different Microsoft breed!) and has made a number of “feedback-driven usability enhancements in existing features” to the (July) preview.
The plugin provides templates and functionality that you can use to create, develop, test, and deploy Windows Azure applications using the Eclipse development environment.
It’s an Open Source project and the source code is available under the Apache License 2.0 from the project’s site.
The main improvements in the updated release are to the Azure Access Control Service Filter and the Azure Deployment Project wizard.
The Azure Access Control Service Filter now has the option to embed the signing certificate into your application’s WAR file to simplify cloud deployment, along with the ability to create a new self-signed certificate directly from the ACS filter wizard UI.
The Azure Deployment Project wizard has been improved to automatically discover the JDK location on your computer, though you can override the setting if necessary. It will also automatically detect the server type whose installation directory you select.
You can learn more about the plugin from the MSDN documenation.