Tuning IntelliJ IDEA
In this part:
Changing IntelliJ IDEA properties
IntelliJ IDEA makes it possible to change
idea.properties files without editing them in the IntelliJ IDEA installation folder.
To create an empty
idea.properties file or to copy
*.vmoptions file, choose the or on the main menu respectively. Refer to the menu items description for details.
Managing *.vmoptions file
The location of the
*.vmoptions file depends on the operating system you are currently using:
- For Windows:
<IntelliJ IDEA installation folder>/bin/idea.exe.vmoptionsor
<IntelliJ IDEA installation folder>/bin/idea64.exe.vmoptions
- For *NIX:
<IntelliJ IDEA installation folder>/bin/idea.vmoptionsor
<IntelliJ IDEA installation folder>/bin/idea64.vmoptions
- For macOS, you need to make a copy of the
idea.vmoptionsfile in the IDE preferences folder and then edit this copy. The reason is that the app bundle is signed and you should not modify any files inside the bundle.
Since version 12.0.0:
/Applications/IntelliJ Idea XX.app/bin/idea.vmoptionsor the
/Applications/IntelliJ Idea CE XX.app/bin/idea.vmoptionsfile must be copied to
Since version 14.0.0, the
/Applications/IntelliJ Idea XX.app/Contents/bin/idea.vmoptionsor
/Applications/IntelliJ Idea CE XX.app/Contents/bin/idea.vmoptionsfile must be copied to
For older versions, the settings are stored in
/Applications/IntelliJ IDEA <version>.app/Contents/Info.plist.
To avoid editing files in the IntelliJ IDEA installation folder, do one of the following:
- From the main menu, choose to create a copy of the
idea.vmoptionsfile in the user home directory. Refer to Edit Custom VM Options for details.
- Copy the existing file from the IntelliJ IDEA installation folder somewhere and save the path to this location in the
IDEA_VM_OPTIONSenvironment variable (
IDEA64_VM_OPTIONSfor 64 bit systems) .
- Copy the existing
<IntelliJ IDEA installation folder>/bin/idea.exe.vmoptionsor the
<IntelliJ IDEA installation folder>/bin/idea64.exe.vmoptionsfile from the IntelliJ IDEA installation folder into your user home directory.
Then edit this file in the new location.
IDEA64_VM_OPTIONS for 64 bit systems) environment variable is defined, or the
*.vmoptions file exists, this file is used instead of the one located in the IntelliJ IDEA installation folder.
Example: Increasing the heap size
To increase IntelliJ IDEA heap size, you should copy the original
idea.vmoptions file to the above-mentioned location, and then modify the
Managing idea.properties file
idea.properties file located in the
bin directory of the IntelliJ IDEA installation folder should not be edited. Instead of editing the original
idea.properties file, create an
idea.properties file in the following location, open it for editing and add the required properties:
- For Windows:
- For *NIX:
- For macOS:
Example: Changing case of unicode literals
IntelliJ IDEA allows defining whether non-ascii characters should use literals like
This behavior is controlled by the system property
idea.native2ascii.lowercase. By default, upper case characters are used.
If it is desirable to use lower case characters, create the file
idea.properties in the location specified above, open it for editing and add the following line:
Specifying custom JDK, properties or vmoptions files across platforms
A custom JDK,
*.vmoptions files are specified across platforms in a unified way.
All the launchers look at the following environment variables: