SQL Developer is a Java Swing desktop application – surprise!
We support a native operating system ‘look and feel‘ and also ship with an Oracle look and feel (LnF).
The architecture of Swing is designed so that you may change the “look and feel” (L&F) of your application’s GUI (see A Swing Architecture Overview). “Look” refers to the appearance of GUI widgets (more formally, JComponents) and “feel” refers to the way the widgets behave.
The Oracle LnF is the default, and I also think it looks the best, especially on Windows.
However, it’s a little bit more expensive to run over the native LnFs. With the native LnF, the operating system is in charge of how to draw the Windows and render certain elements and controls.
I’m experimenting with this now…running the Windows LnF in SQL Developer v4.1 to see if it’s actually more performant. If YOU are noticing response time issues or if the app it taking too long to draw, trying changing up the LnF, and report back here with your findings!
Look and Feel Gallery
Changing this will require a restart. If you’re like me, you’re totally lazy. So instead of doing that, just check out some gallery screenshots I put together of all the different OS and LnF permutations.