An integrated development environment (IDE) (sometimes known as an integrated design environment or integrated debugging environment) is a software application that provides comprehensive facilities to programmers for software development.
Many coders learn to code using a text editor but in time they move towards using an IDE as this type of software application makes the art of coding quicker and more efficient.
For example, IDEs have semantic knowledge of the programming language which highlights coding problems while typing. Compiling is ‘on the fly’ and debugging is integrated.
An IDE normally comprises a:
- Source code editor (essentially a text editor with additional features such as code completion, structural navigation, and syntax highlighting);
- Compiler and/or interpreter;
- Build automation tools.
A good IDE helps developers produce bug-free, maintainable applications quicker than by using an editor and console based tools. However, selecting an IDE can be a daunting task, in part because there are a large number available for Linux.
To provide an insight into the quality of software that is available, we have compiled a list of 21 highly polished free Linux IDEs. Hopefully, there will be something of interest here for anyone who wants to quicken the pace of software development. Here’s our recommendations.
Now, let’s explore the 21 IDEs at hand. For each title we have compiled its own portal page, a full description with an in-depth analysis of its features, screenshots, together with links to relevant resources.
|Integrated Development Environments|
|PyCharm||Integrated Development Environment for Python|
|Eclipse||Java based environment combining a number of different Eclipse projects|
|Spyder||The Scientific Python Development Environment|
|NetBeans IDE||Java based IDE from Apache|
|Qt Creator||Cross-platform, complete Integrated Development Environment|
|Eric||Full featured Python editor and IDE|
|KDevelop||An easy to use IDE for KDE|
|Oracle DS||(formerly Sun Studio) Software development product|
|PyDev||Python Integrated Development Environment for Eclipse|
|Lazarus||Delphi compatible cross-platform IDE|
|Gambas||Development environment and a full powerful development platform|
|CodeLite||Powerful and lightweight C/C++ IDE|
|IntelliJ IDEA||IDE for Java, Groovy, and other languages|
|Arduino IDE||Electronics prototyping platform|
|DrRacket||IDE for the Racket programming languages|
|Code::Blocks||Very extensible and fully configurable|
|Builder||IDE for GNOME|
|Anjuta||Versatile development environment for GNOME|
|LiteIDE||Edit and build Go projects|
|MonoDevelop||GNOME environment for the development of Mono and .NET applications|
|Geany||Small and lightweight IDE based on Scintilla|
Read our complete collection of recommended free and open source software. The collection covers all categories of software.
The software collection forms part of our series of informative articles for Linux enthusiasts. There's tons of in-depth reviews, open source alternatives to proprietary software from large corporations like Google, Microsoft, Apple, Adobe, IBM, Cisco, Oracle and Autodesk. There are also fun things to try, hardware, free programming books and tutorials, and much more.