For the last three years I was very happy using the incredible Flash Develop via Parallels and XP on my Mac. I would use Flash CS3 in OSX to create and edit assets and then tie the whole project together with FlashDevelop in XP. Although Flash Develop is free, I did donate do them and will do so again if I can get it to solve my current problem.
You see, Parallels has become a monster on my system. When it is not running, my Mac works fine, when it is running, I can’t do anything on the Mac and XP is pretty slow. It seems like this happens right about the time of a Parallels update (they have a new version I can upgrade to right now). I’m not blaming them, but I assume that maybe Paralleles VMs get bloated and unusable after 9 months (about the Parallels version release cycle). Flash Develop in Parallels also started to have problems with my build folders being shared between the Mac and Windows which is a huge pain in the ass. For the final project I did with Flash Develop I had to have an SVN checkout folder + a local Flash Develop project folder plus a Mac project folder. Keeping all three in-sync was a huge pain in the ass.
A few weeks back I purchased Flash CS5 in OSX and attempted to use it’s Project Panel to build an application. It works ok, but it lacking some of the more refined features of Flash Develop – understanding my package structure completely, showing my Static constants as I type and other various little details.
I figured that I should try out Flash Builder and see it if can do everything I want. I Have two projects that I am currently building with Flash Builder and I am not really getting into it. For one, it has the same problems as the Flash IDE project panel – not recognizing my project structure completely and not showing static constants in the current class, but also projects don’t seem to be as portable as Flash Develop projects. There certainly are some nice features, but it is still Eclipse and I really dislike the interface and especially the little things like the atrocious “Find and Replace” functions.
I did test FDT for a couple days (4 months ago) but it still is Eclipse based and I want to stay away from that as much as possible. If anyone has used it for a lot of AS3 and can give it a good word I will test it again.
There are some other options put there: IntelliJ looks promising, but I will need time to figure out the build process and AS3 integration.
What I would like is this: Flash Develop on the Mac, and I am willing to pay for it. That might mean I have to upgrade to the latest Parallels, change to a Windows 7 VM and try again. Has anyone out there use Parallels in this manner and been able to share project folders seamlessly? If so, I will try it.
What other good solutions are there? I am willing to pay, so I don’t need free tools, I just need good ones.