We’ve now had some time and frankly, it was hardly worth the effort. David Gibbs noted in a comment on the original post that the Eclipse Web tools are "not all that great" and we agree.
Having gone to all the trouble of loading the Web tooling, what do you get for your "money?” For all intents and purposes, basically what you get is a Web perspective and a color-coded HTML editor. Most of the editor’s features are pretty standard, but for those of you who still code your HTML in Notepad or worse (SEU?) you may be interested in knowing what’s available.
Unlike the old WDSC version, it has no WYSIWYG capabilities or preview mode. Here's an outline of the basic features provided:
• Indentation is automatically maintained when adding new lines, but we were disappointed to find it didn't automatically indent when a new line is added after an element such as <table>.
• The editor supports formatting the source (all or active elements only) to keep things "pretty.” You can control the indentation level used via the preferences.
• Content assist is always available. For example, when you enter a “<” character, the editor will bring up the list of tags that can be used in the current context--a very useful feature for those of us for whom HTML syntax isn’t second nature.
• Similar context help is available when the “=” sign is entered, which is really useful when you can't remember what options are available for specific keywords. Less obvious is the assist for the keywords themselves. To get those you must use the Ctrl + spacebar keys to bring up the list. Just as with RPG typing the first letter will shorten the list.
• The editor automatically completes a closing tag as soon as you’ve entered the “</” characters. It does this by monitoring what the last tag opened--and not yet closed--is. This is probably Jon's favorite feature.
• Outline view is automatically populated and can be a nice, simple way to rapidly navigate through the source member, particularly when dealing with nested tables that can often be difficult to navigate.
• Templates are supported. Many standard ones are supplied for creating tables, new pages to a specific standard and more. You can also add your own or modify any of the standard templates.
One additional feature we discovered while wandering around the Web perspective was the ability to launch a "Web Services Explorer.” We thought that might be interesting, so we gave it a try. Our advice: don't bother. It took awhile for it to load everything and then after all was done we were left with an interface that as best we can tell only allows you to explore Universal Description, Discovery, and Integration (UDDI) repositories. But these seem few and far between and of the few we found, only the Microsoft site worked; the others (including IBM's) simply reported an error. Even when connected to the Microsoft one we couldn't find anything useful. We were hoping this "Explorer" masked a SoapUI type tool and that would have been nice. Sadly, we were disappointed.
If any of you have any experience with these tools that makes you feel we have judged them harshly, please let us know. In the meantime, our advice is if you just want occasional HTML editing capability in the workbench, then by all means install these tools. But if you want to work regularly with HTML you'll be far better off with free tools such as Kompozer and launch it from the workbench.