The three most influential factors for Eclipse speed are:

  • Using the latest version of Eclipse (2020-06 as on 26 June 2020)
    Note that David Balažic's comment (July 2014) contradicts that criteria which was working six years ago:

The "same" workspace in Indigo (3.7.2) SR2 loads in 4 seconds, in Kepler SR2 (4.3.2) in 7 seconds and in Luna (4.4.0) in 10 seconds. All are Java EE bundles. Newer versions have more bundled plugins, but still the trend is obvious. (by "same" workspace I mean: same (additionally installed) plugins used, same projects checked out from version control).

  • Launching it with the latest JDK (Java 14 at the time of writing, which does not prevent you to compile in your Eclipse project with any other JDK you want: 1.4.2, 1.5, 1.6 older...)

    -vm jdk1.6.0_10\jre\bin\client\jvm.dll
  • Configuring the eclipse.ini (see this question for a complete eclipse.ini)

    -Xms512m

    -Xmx4096m [...]

The Xmx argument is the amount of memory Eclipse will get (in simple terms). With -Xmx4g, it gets 4 GB of RAM, etc.


Note:

  1. Referring to the jvm.dll has advantages:

  2. Splash screen coming up sooner.

  3. Eclipse.exe in the process list instead of java.exe.
  4. Firewalls: Eclipse wants access to the Internet instead of Java.
  5. Window management branding issues, especially on Windows and Mac.