The reason – you program on your nice fast Windows PC but under the bonnet it copies the files and uses the RPi to actually compile the project which, whilst a bit slower than using a high spec PC, solves all the issues of platform architecture, installed libraries, etc.  Its a really nice well implemented and pretty damn painless solution!  Oh, and single stepping, run to breakpoint, etc, full on debugging just works – thank you NetBeans gods!

Installing NetBeans

At the time or writing installing Netbeans 11 has a few hoops to jump through – there’s no longer an installer and C/C++ support has to be added (it was all fine in netbeans 8 but since loosing Oracle support lots of changes are underway, hopefully will improve in future versions)

Download the latest NetBeans IDE from

There is no installer provided for the new apache version of netbeans (at the time of writing) so select the “binaries” version, save it somewhere. To run it double click the file “netbeans-install-directory\bin\netbeans64.exe”.

You will also need the Java SE Development Kit (JDK) (the Java Runtime Environment (JRE) is not enough). Netbeans needs Jave SE / JDK to be installed in order to function.

Getting C/C++ support working

C/CC++ has been removed in netbeans 10.0 and 11.0 but is scheduled to be re-introduced in netbeans 12.00. Its down to a donation phase of work in the transition from Oracle. However it can easily be added into V10.0 and V11.0.

Menu > Tools > Plugins > Settings tab > Add button. Then on the Update Center Customizer screen:

  • Name: Enter something (e.g. “My added plugins”)
  • URL:

Click OK

You’ll now have a new entry in the “Configuration of Update Centers”. Ensure it is checked.

Now go to the “Available Plugins” tab and you will see “C/C++” has been added. Select it and press “Install”

NetBeans New Install Configuration

The following are options we like to use to make netbeans behave like other IDE’s we use and to correct things we find annoying.

Turning Off Expand Tabs To Spaces setting

Menu > Tools > Options > Editor > Formatting tab

Select ‘All Languages’ and Category ‘Tabs And Indents’

Turn off ‘Expand Tabs to Spaces’

Set ‘Tab Size’ to 4

Press ‘Apply’

Changing To Uppercase to SHIFT+CTRL+U

Menu > Tools > Options > Keymap > To Uppercase, then select Add Alternative

Menu > Tools > Options > Keymap > To Lowercase, then select Add Alternative

Making The Editor Work As Well As Possible

Tools > Options > Editor > General > Enable Camel Case Navigation = Off

Tools > Options > Editor > Code Completion > Insert Single Proposals Automatically = Off

Tools > Options > Editor > Code Completion > Insert Closing Brackets Automatically = Off

Tools > Options > Editor > Formatting > Language: (do for “C”, “C++” and “C/C++ Header”) >

Indents > # at Start Line = Off

Indents > Indent Case Statements = Off

Braces Placement = Set all to new line

Other > Add Leading Star In Comments = Off

Turning off the grey lines that are shown for intents: Main Menu > View > Show Indent Guide Lines > turn off

Stopping scroll wheel zoom issue

Change zoom in and out to

SHIFT + CTRL + Up Arrow/Down Arrow

Creating A Project on The RPi

See here.

We benefit hugely from resources on the web so we decided we should try and give back some of our knowledge and resources to the community by opening up many of our company’s internal notes and libraries through mini sites like this. We hope you find the site helpful.
Please feel free to comment if you can add help to this page or point out issues and solutions you have found, but please note that we do not provide support on this site. If you need help with a problem please use one of the many online forums.