Accepted answer

mylyn should be your answer here.

mylyn is a task-focused interface for eclipse that makes working with very large workspaces as easy as working with small ones.
mylyn extends eclipse with mechanisms for keeping track of the tasks that you work on.

mylyn monitors your work activity on those tasks to identify information relevant to the task-at-hand. mylyn monitors eclipse and captures your interaction in a task context.
system artifacts such as files, types, methods, and fields get assigned a degree-of-interest based on how recently and frequently you interact with them.
this results in uninteresting elements being filtered from view within eclipse, allowing you to focus in on what is important.

following saheed's answer, don't miss codekiller's comment:

you can

  • activate the task to reopen all files and
  • deactivate the task to close all the files.

bookmarks (mentioned here by user1039663) is a valable alternative.


you need a macro. searching using this term at eclipse plugin sites like and so on must yield enough suggestions, for example practically macro. good luck.


i've edited this answer as per below comment (include essential parts of answer in this post).

yes, you can save off groups of tabs in eclipse by installing this session manager plug-in.

i've wanted this functionality in eclipse as well. i recently wrote a feature and have been successfully using it for a few months now. it is a new osgi type extension and works with eclipse neon and above.

here's how to install it.

  • in eclipse, go to help → install new software
  • click “add”, enter a name like “editor sessions” and the following url.
  • unckeck “group items by category” to see the feature.
  • check the box that says “editor sessions manager” and click next.
  • read and agree to the short license agreement.
  • click the remaining install buttons.
  • allow eclipse to restart.

full set of instructions are here:

please give it a try and send comments. i've found it a very useful tool as i work with several eclipse projects at once and need to recall file groups.

hope you enjoy it;


in addition to all mentioned... did you try bookmarks? you can save multiple bookmarks into one set, there are bookmark sets management option and you can add descriptions with prefixes to group bookmarks on the same set. finally and more important: you can select multiple bookmarks, select goto and multiple editors will be opened at once.


the accepted answer tells us which tool could be used but does not provide a quick and dirty explanation on how to use it.

in my case, i hadn't finished researching a large code base but i needed to save my progress so i could return to it later hence the need to save all open tabs using mylyn.

  1. if you already have mylyn installed, navigate to window -> show view -> task list to view the list of tasks. if you've never used it before, the list will be empty.

  2. right-click inside the task list view then new -> category to create a new category. right-click again new -> task to create a new task.

  3. double-click on the task you just created then click on the context tab at the bottom left of the view.

  4. now navigate to each tab which you would like mylyn to save by clicking on the tab name. notice how an entry for the source file for that tab is added in context tab of the task list view.

once you've cycled through all the tabs you'd like to save, you can confirm they were saved by closing each one and double-clicking the source file in the task list to restore the tab.


extended vs presentation provides capabilities to save sessions.

unluckily, it only works with eclipse 3.1 to 3.8:

project page at eclipse marketplace

sessions management


eclipse provides multiple ways of structuring the ide desktop:

  • perspectives: customization of the positions of open and closed views and editors. you can copy and rename existing perspectives like the java perspective and suit them to your needs by customizing them. see the window menu or right-click on the perspective icon in the upper right corner
  • task management tools like mylyn: see answer by vonc
  • multiple windows: you can open new windows and move them to your second monitor. select window > new window to open a new window. each window keeps track of its own open editors.
  • multiple instances of eclipse: you can always use multiple workspaces and multiple instances of eclipse. however, this is only recommended when working on different projects, as both instances would overwrite each others files when rebuilding.
  • hotkeys: by using shortcuts like ctrl-t and alt-left/alt-right and ctrl-q you can quickly jump to previous locations where you have edited source files. this is a great help in navigating the open workspace.

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