September 13, 2018

PHP Development Code Editors and IDEs of 2018 – Part 2

Code Editors

A computer program does what you tell it to do, not what you want it to do.” – Unknown

PHP, one of the vital used programming languages for Web Development that have millions of developers across the world, who works on different frameworks simultaneously. Being a Php development geek, we have to handle several functions, several lines of codes, and heavy databases (sometimes) and idealizing a small “;” error, looks like a puzzle.

To make it easy to code, there are numerous code editors and IDEs (Integrated Development Environments) available freely as well as with premium license. Selection of one solely depends on your requirement and preference.

Glimpse of PHP Development Code Editors and IDEs of 2018 –Part 1!

In our previous write-up, we have already explored Top IDEs and discuss their features, functions, and a bit of history. There, we have listed top 4 IDEs according to the coder’s preference and features, which are: PHPStorm, NetBeans, Visual Studio, and Eclipse. Although, you can find out more IDEs online, even, few code editors also work as the Integrated Development Environment in their pro versions.

Along with that, we had already gone through with the differences in between IDEs and Code Editors. According to that, IDE is a package that allows you to write, compile, execute, and debug on the same environment. While on other hand, Code editors give you freedom to write bug-free code in any supported programming language.


TOP CODE EDITORS for Custom PHP Development

Custom code needs more attention and accuracy and without having a compatible Code Editor (if you only want to write code), you can puzzle out.

Code editor isn’t just a doctype workplace as like Microsoft word, but it can be your assistant who can help you out with auto suggestions, highlighting errors, and much more. Here’re few Code Editors, that resembles as market leaders so far,

Let’s explore more beneath:

01. Atom

Lead the list of Top PHP Code Editors, as preferred by several PHP Development geeks and used by millions. Atom is the initiation of GitHub and free open source platform. Initially released on Feb 2016 and in the meantime of 2 years, it has been the top most text editor among developers due to its simple workspace and functionalities.


  • Fuzzy File Finder
  • Easy to navigate interface
  • Supports Command Palette
  • Special Developer Tools
  • Package Manager Integrated for Plugins support
  • Customizing UI is easier as compared to other code editors
  • The GitHub community is pretty active in getting any issues resolved if the developer is struck somewhere while programming


  • Slow as compared to other text editors
  • CoffeeScript needed to write the packages.
  • No Corona Package
  • Difficulty in handling large files

Microsoft Windows, Mac OS X, Linux

Supported Languages

PHTML, CSS, Less, Sass, GitHub Flavored Markdown, C/C++, C#, Go, Java, Objective-C, JavaScript, JSON, CoffeeScript, Python, PHP, Ruby, Ruby on Rails, shell script, Clojure, Perl, Git, Make, Property List (Apple), TOML, XML, YAML, Mustache, Julia & SQL


FREE (MIT License)

More Features

Open source, built-in Package Manager, Themes

Check out more details on Wiki Or download it from Atom

02. Sublime Text

Runner up in the list of Top PHP Code Editors, due to its complicated interface, that somehow downgrade its functional excellence.

At Sublime Text 3, You are allowed to extend the functionality with different addons and can customize appearance, code linters, Color pickers, GIT plugins, etc. which lead it to occupy second place in the list.


  • Multi-Line selection and editing
  • Offers a cross-platform support
  • Instant file switching
  • Beginner friendly interface
  • Black screen supports distraction free editing mode
  • Fully customizable
  • Support for TextMate and Windows Decoration themes
  • Haxe and OpenFL integration via plugin support
  • Syntax detection and highlighting the error


  • Poor Support for Linux
  • Opening big files takes time
  • Crashes Frequently
  • The much-used package manager is missing from the software
  • The code editor does not support the print option
  • No toolbar of its own

Microsoft Windows, Mac OS X, Linux

Supported Languages
All popular languages

Free to $80/license

More Features
Package Manager

Check out more details on Wiki Or download it from Sublime Text

03. Notepad++

It’s an upgraded version of Notepad text editor (inbuilt editor of Windows OS), where you can find out advance features that helps you to write error free code using supported libraries and syntaxes. PHP Development Geeks rated it as the best HTML editor and one of the easiest code editors that immediately highlights the errors.


  • Being built for the Windows platform, it can also run on Linux, Unix, Mac OS X (using Wine).
  • It is a lightweight application and launches quickly.
  • Supports external plugins including macros.
  • Interface supports tabbed editing.
  • Add Bookmarks for future concerns
  • Drag and Drop Option for beginners.
  • Option to find and replace text
  • Smart syntax highlighting
  • Auto indentation and auto complete
  • Code and text folding
  • Compiler Integration
  • FTP support
  • Spell check with file comparison


  • Remote file editing does not support HTTP, SSH or WebDAV
  • Does not support large files
  • Third party program (wine) is needed to run the application on Mac OS X.

Microsoft Windows

Supported Languages

Ada, asp, Assembly, AutoIt, Batch, C, C++, C#, Caml, Cmake, COBOL, CoffeeScript, CSS, D, Diff, Flash ActionScript, Fortran, Gui4CLI, Haskell, HTML, INNO, Java, JavaScript, JSP, KiXtart, LISP, Lua, Makefile, Matlab, MS-DOS, INI file, NSIS, Normal Text File, Objective-C, Pascal, Perl, PHP, PostScript, PowerShell, Properties, Python, R, Resource file, Ruby, Shell, Scheme, Smalltalk, SQL, TCL, TeX, Visual Basic, VHDL, Verilog, XML, YAML



More Features

Open source, Macro recording and playback, User Defined Syntax Highlighting and Folding

Check out more details on Wiki Or download it from Notepad ++

04. Visual Studio Code

Microsoft powered Code Editing Platform that provides an amazing development experience, faster execution of codes due to its lightweight installation and 30+ programing language support.


  • Supports more than 30 programming languages, including Microsoft’s core language ASP.NET, C#, etc.
  • The application installs in very less time due to its compact size.
  • Visual Studio Code also has a portable version to download in the supported devices.
  • Enables GitHub control and offers debugging features.


  • The software takes a huge time in updating on Linux systems.
  • Calls for an immediate improvement in the extension support.

Microsoft Windows, Mac OS X, Linux

Supported Languages

Batch, C++, Clojure, CoffeeScript, DockerFile, Elixir, F#, Go, Pug template language, Java, HandleBars, Ini, Lua, Makefile, Objective-C, Perl, PowerShell, Python, R, Razor, Ruby, Rust, SQL, Visual Basic, XML


FREE (MIT License)

More Features

GitHub support, code refactoring, debugger

Check out more details on Wiki Or download it from Visual Studio Code

05. Komodo Edit

A bit expensive and limited in terms of functionality, programing language support, and productivity, but still it gets listed in Top 7 PHP Code Editors due to coder’s support and ultra-fast performance.


  • Syntax Highlighting and Code coloring
  • Code auto complete
  • Auto indentation
  • Extension support and macros


  • Spell Check not available
  • Cannot edit collaboratively
  • Large files not supported
  • The tool comes with a hefty fee of $295(without upgrades and support) and $382(with updates and support)

Microsoft Windows, Mac OS X, Linux

Supported Languages

Python, Perl, PHP, Ruby, TCL, SQL, Smarty, CSS, HTML, XML

USD 295/License
More Features

Package Manager, Vagrant, Docker, Unit Testing

Check out more details on Wiki Or download it from Komodo Edit

06. Brackets

An open-source text editor offered by the renowned organization “Adobe”, who is well-known for its unique, but productive range of softwares. The PHP text editor comes with an adorable “Extract” feature that allows a developer to pick colors, measurements, fonts, and gradients from a PSD to ready-for-web CSS.


  • Uses Inline editors for faster access to a particular part of the code and more rapid implementation.
  • Preview the code establishing a real-time connection.
  • Brackets is an excellent tool for implementing JavaScript, HTML, and CSS.
  • Easily customizable being an open source platform.
  • Regularly updated with the latest features and bug fixes.


  • Split screen not supported
  • No full screen for comprehensive view
  • Third party plugins not allowed
  • Does not support auto-completion of code
Microsoft Windows, Mac OS X, Linux
Supported Languages

C++, C, VBScript, Java, JavaScript, HTML, Python, Perl, Ruby

FREE (MIT License)
More Features

Live Preview, JSLint, LESS support

Check out more details on Wiki Or download it from Brackets

07. UltraEdit

Impactful, editable and multi-language supporting PHP code editor, initially launched in 1994 by the founder of IDM Computer Solutions Inc., Ian D. Mead. The commercial editor has several unique features and plugin support to enhance PHP Development geek’s coding experience.


  • Multi-Select option for editing a common code at once.
  • Code and syntax highlighting to notify any error in the code.
  • Integrated FTP for secure file transfer.
  • Column/Block Editing
  • File and data sorting
  • Integrated SSH
  • Good at handling large files


  • The tool is very expensive as compared to the other text editors in the same segment.

Microsoft Windows, Mac OS X, Linux

Supported Languages

C/C++, Perl, PHP 5.3, 5.4, 5.5, 5.6 and 7.0, HTML and JavaScript


USD 99 for the first year

More Features

Blazingly fast large file handling, Integrated FTP client, Layouts

Check out more details on Wiki Or download it from UltraEdit


Be crazy to write down the most anticipating error free code, but without a code editor that will be a puzzle. Being a PHP development geek, you have to include a recommended PHP code editor in your routine that can help you in identification of errors immediately. Along with that, you also have to keep your eyes on web development trends to know what’s in trend, what’s going to be viral, and what’s appealing a customer to become a consumer.

Here, in this write up, we have clustered TOP 7 CODE EDITORS FOR PHP DEVELOPMENT, which are highly recommended, and used by industry experts. Although, that’s not a full-fledged list as there are plenty more available online that can be your choice. You can choose one as per your comfort or your requirement from this list or from Dreamweaver, SlickEdit, jEdit, RJ TextEd, Rapid, Codeanywhere, Text Wrangler, TextMate, Coda, BlueFish, etc.

You can also explore TOP 4 IDES FOR PHP DEVELOPMENT to get more features, functions, and better platform. To read down about leading IDEs, you can go here:


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