NetBeans 7.4 introduced an alternate implementation of editor tabs which is based on Swing's JTable (each editor tab is a table cell). The new implementation addressed a number of feature requests - same background color per project, multiple rows of tabs etc. However there are others, e.g. #42303 or #234416
The proposed API will make it easier to modify the appearance of editor tabs by implementing a simple decorator-like class.
It will be also easier to create custom implementation of the tab displayer component as only a single abstract class needs to be extended.
Created attachment 140311 [details]
The whole patch
Created attachment 140312 [details]
If there are no comments I'll make the API public by the end of this week.
Cannot find this API-change in http://bits.netbeans.org/dev/javadoc/