comparing netbeans with notepad++ is like comparing dreamweaver to notepad
The thing is netbeans is an IDE (integrated development environment ftw) while notepad++ isnt.
If your working on a large project then notpad++ isnt really much of an option. Its more practicle to compare netbeans to dreamweaver or another IDE
But if you ask me dreamweaver is one of the best IDE's out there for web development and nothing really compares to it. But then if im working on a java project i would have to say netbeans is pretty good, but in the end its all up to what you as the developer fills most comftable using, who am i to say that dreamweaver is better then netbeans, and vis versa. As long as the product can do what you want it to do and you know how to use it then it doesnt really matter what you use. And yeah for a free product Netbeans is pretty good