This isn't a good sign
I downloaded the open source Eclipse IDE from IBM and friends and unzipped it into a directory as the instructions said.
Then, I double-clicked the 'eclipse.exe' icon, and all I get is the error message above.
Hey, at least I got an error message, right?
Lord knows I'm not perfect, but if I were going to distribute something like this with the full might of IBM behind me, I'd make pretty darn sure that my starter application worked under various conditions and configurations. If I needed to run under a specific set of circumstances, I'd search for those circumstances and if I couldn't find them I'd inform the user of that fact. Anything less would be amateurish in the extreme.
But, that's not the java mindset. No, the java mindset is the less platform-specific code, the better. Even if it's in something as isolated as a launcher. Or, even if by using a little native code you could make something actually work instead of being a 100Meg boat anchor. I'm sure the answer is out there, probably related to something about it using the wrong VM and my needing to write a batch file to launch their launcher to tell it which VM to use. The customer should never have to do things like this, but, then again, not making the customer jump through hoops would be contrary to the Java Way.
UPDATE: It works! And, all I needed to do was open up an MS/DOS window and type in:
eclipse -vm C:\java\jdks\jdk142\jre\bin\javaw.exe
That's all! Thanks for your professionalism, IBM.