The Complete Guide to JavaScript IDE for 2023

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Marquel Ellis



Choosing the right Integrated Development Environment (IDE) is crucial for new JavaScript programmers. An IDE is a software tool that assists programmers in writing, testing, and debugging code more efficiently.

person choosing an ide on a computer

If you’re new to coding, choosing the right IDE can be daunting, given the numerous options available. However, having an IDE provides immense benefits, including faster coding and increased productivity.

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In this blog, we‘ll discuss the features of a good JavaScript IDE. We’ll then suggest some of the best options available. Whether you’re creating games, web applications, or mobile apps, we’ve got you covered.

Table of Contents

What is a JavaScript IDE?

An Integrated Development Environment (IDE) is a software application that provides a platform for coding, debugging, and testing software all in one place. It combines different tools and features to make software development easier and more efficient.

Coding becomes more efficient and accurate when using an IDE. The app's user-friendly interface streamlines the process and the ability to correct errors. An IDE can also provide code suggestions, highlight syntax errors, and automate repetitive tasks.

A beginner-friendly IDE is crucial for simplifying the learning process. It should have a simple and intuitive interface with easy-to-use tools. You can then focus on the programming concepts rather than the complexities of the software development environment.

Benefits of Using JavaScript IDEs

Using a JavaScript IDE can benefit both novice and expert developers, improving coding efficiency and output. IDEs offer other benefits, such as simplifying debugging, enabling collaboration, and supporting popular libraries. These advantages make IDEs an essential tool for any JavaScript programmer.

Enhanced Productivity

JavaScript IDEs include features that accelerate the coding process. This includes code completion, which recommends code for the user, and code snippets that offer pre-written code blocks for programs.

Simplified Debugging

IDEs for JavaScript come with advanced debugging tools that help programmers fix errors in their code. These tools include features like breakpoints and step-through debugging. This allows for real-time detection and resolution of issues.

Improved Code Quality

Using IDEs can enhance code quality by enforcing coding standards and best practices. IDEs feature the ability to recognize syntax errors and propose code enhancements that adhere to best practices.

Better Collaboration

IDEs can also simplify collaboration for programmers. Many offer a version control system. This enables multiple developers to work on a single codebase together.

Support for Libraries and Frameworks

IDEs have a built-in feature that supports commonly used JavaScript frameworks and libraries. That includes React, Angular, and Vue. They can also be linked with package managers, such as NPM, which makes it easier to manage dependencies.

Best Javascript IDEs

1. Visual Studio Code

Best JavaScript IDE, Visual Studio Code

Microsoft offers a user-friendly and customizable IDE. Plus, its code editor supports multiple languages. The IDE is free and open-source. Visual code studio also comes equipped with powerful features, including debugging, Git integration, syntax highlighting, and IntelliSense. Its output language code is English.

What we like: There are a wide range of extensions available in the library.

Best for: All levels of developers

Pricing: Free

2. WebStorm

Best JavaScript IDE, Webstorm

WebStorm, created by JetBrains, offers intelligent code completion, suggesting appropriate suggestions as you type JavaScript code. The IDE understands the context and helps with variable, function, and method completion. This makes coding faster and more efficient.

Plus, there’s a robust search feature. WebStorm can navigate through large codebases. Developers can quickly jump to variable declarations, function usages, and file references.

What we like: WebStorm performs automated code inspections, ensuring code quality and providing suggestions for improvements.

Best for: Advanced web developers

Pricing: WebStorm costs $15.90 per user a month. An all-products pack costs $77.90 per user a month.

3. Sublime Text

Best JavaScript IDE, Sublime Text

Sublime Text is a versatile text editor that can be customized and extended to function as a powerful JavaScript-integrated development environment (IDE). The editor is known for its remarkable speed and performance. It launches quickly and has a small memory footprint, making it ideal for developers who value efficiency and productivity.

Sublime Text offers extensive customization options, allowing developers to tailor the editor to their specific preferences. Users can modify key bindings, adjust settings, create macros, and install themes to personalize their coding experience.

What we like: Sublime Text is simple but effective. Its minimalist interface makes coding simple.

Best for: Front-end web developers

Pricing: Individual plans cost $99 annually. Business plans cost $65 annually.

4. Light Table

Best JavaScript IDE, Light table

This lightweight, open-source IDE supports JavaScript and provides feedback and code execution for developers. It’s easily customizable for each of your projects, supporting anything from websites to games. Its elegant design makes coding clutter-free and beautiful.

Light Table enables developers to evaluate and execute JavaScript code directly within their source files. With just a keystroke, developers can see the output of a particular line or selection of code, which facilitates rapid prototyping.

What we like: Light Table provides built-in code metrics and visualization tools that help developers gain insights into their JavaScript code.

Best for: Teams who want to collaborate on the same code file simultaneously

Pricing: Free

5. Brackets

Best JavaScript IDE, Brackets

Brackets is a free, open-source text editor. This IDE offers a real-time preview feature. Developers can see the changes in their HTML, CSS, and JavaScript code immediately. As they write code, changes are instantly reflected in the connected browser.

Brackets provides a split view feature that allows developers to work on different parts of their codebase simultaneously. By splitting the editor vertically or horizontally, developers can view and edit multiple files side by side. This makes code comparisons and cross-referencing convenient.

What we like: Brackets allows developers to easily extract repetitive code into reusable functions. This feature makes it straightforward to optimize code by extracting common patterns.

Best for: Front-end web developers on a budget

Pricing: Free

6. Eclipse

Best JavaScript IDE, Eclipse

Eclipse is a versatile open-source IDE that supports many programming languages, including JavaScript. The IDE offers syntax highlighting, code formatting, code navigation, auto-completion, and refactoring.

Eclipse supports various JavaScript libraries and frameworks through plugins and extensions. Developers can find plugins for popular frameworks like jQuery, AngularJS, and React.

What we like: Eclipse integrates with build tools and task runners commonly used in the JavaScript ecosystem. Plugins like Grunt and Gulp provide seamless integration with Eclipse.

Best for: Advanced developers

Pricing: Free

7. IntelliJ IDEA

Best JavaScript IDE, IntelliJ IDEA

IntelliJ IDEA stands out as a powerful and intelligent JavaScript IDE, providing comprehensive coding assistance. Its focus on productivity, code quality, and developer experience makes it a top choice for JavaScript development.

This IDE includes a wide range of automated refactoring features for JavaScript code. Developers can safely rename symbols, extract code into functions or modules, and perform various refactorings with ease. Automated refactorings help maintain code consistency, reduce errors, and improve code maintainability.

What we like: The IDE understands JavaScript syntax, libraries, frameworks, and APIs, offering accurate suggestions and improving code quality.

Best for: Advanced developers

Pricing: Individual plans cost $169 a year, or $289 yearly for an all-product pack. Organization-wide plans cost $599 per user a year, or $779 per user yearly for an all-product pack.

8. CodeLite

Best JavaScript IDE, CodeLite

CodeLite is a free and open-source IDE with support for multiple programming languages, including JavaScript. Its core features include debugging, code completion, and a built-in terminal.

CodeLite seamlessly integrates with popular version control systems like Git, SVN, and Mercurial, making it easier for developers to manage and collaborate on their projects.

What we like: CodeLite is available for Windows, macOS, and Linux operating systems, providing flexibility and accessibility to developers regardless of their preferred OS.

Best for: C++ and PHP developers

Pricing: Free

9. NetBeans

Best JavaScript IDE, NetBeans

NetBeans is a free and open-source IDE that supports multiple programming languages, including JavaScript. The IDE provides robust project management capabilities, allowing developers to organize their JavaScript code into well-structured projects. It supports project templates, version control integration, and build system configuration.

NetBeans also includes a drag-and-drop interface builder for HTML, CSS, and JavaScript called Matisse. This allows developers to visually design user interfaces and generates the corresponding markup and code.

What we like: NetBeans comes with a powerful JavaScript debugger that enables developers to step through their code, set breakpoints, inspect variables, and diagnose issues efficiently.

Best for: Java developers

Pricing: Free

10. CodePen

Best JavaScript IDE, CodePen

CodePen is a web-based development platform, allowing developers to write, test, and share code directly in the browser. It requires no setup or installation, making it accessible from any device with an internet connection.

CodePen also enables developers to share their code snippets or complete projects by generating embeddable code. These embeds can be easily added to websites, blogs, or documentation, making it simple to showcase live examples.

What we like: CodePen provides real-time feedback, instantly executing code as it is written. This allows developers to quickly see the results of their changes without needing to run the code separately.

Best for: Beginner developers and quick prototyping

Pricing: Free

11. CodeSandbox

Best JavaScript IDE, CodeSandbox

This IDE provides a sandboxed development environment, isolating the code execution from the local machine. CodeSandbox ensures a secure and controlled environment for running JavaScript code without affecting the host system.

CodeSandbox requires no setup or configuration. Developers can start coding immediately in the browser without the need to install any dependencies or configure build tools.

What we like: Multiple developers can work on the same project simultaneously, making it easy to conduct remote pair programming and code review.

Best for: Beginner to intermediate developers

Pricing: Free

12. Codeanywhere

Best JavaScript IDE, Codeanywhere

Codeanywhere operates entirely in the cloud, allowing developers to access their projects and coding environment from anywhere with an internet connection. This eliminates the need for local installation and enables seamless development from anywhere.

Further, Codeanywhere allows developers to connect to external servers and databases directly from the IDE. This feature enables developers to work with remote resources seamlessly.

What we like: Codeanywhere’s focus on accessibility, convenience, and flexibility makes it suitable for developers who require a versatile coding environment.

Best for: Remote teams and freelancers

Pricing: Basic plans cost $6 per user monthly. Standard plans cost $15 per user monthly. Premium plans cost $40 per user monthly.

13. Cloud9

Best JavaScript IDE, Cloud9

Cloud9 includes a powerful code editor with features like intelligent code completion, syntax highlighting, and advanced debugging capabilities. This IDE supports JavaScript and numerous other programming languages, providing developers with a rich development experience.

Cloud9 also provides a live preview feature that enables developers to view their web applications or websites in real time within the IDE. This allows teams to see changes instantly as they are made, reducing feedback loop time.

What we like: Cloud9 offers built-in terminals that allow developers to execute commands directly within the IDE.

Best for: Remote teams and freelancers

Pricing: A free version is available. Pricing is available upon request.

15. ActiveState Komodo

Best JavaScript IDE, ActiveState Komodo

Komodo offers excellent support for multiple programming languages, including JavaScript, Python, Ruby, PHP, Perl, and more. This makes it a versatile IDE for multi-language projects or developers working with different technologies.

The IDE provides intelligent code completion and code hinting. The platform leverages language-specific knowledge to assist developers in writing code faster. It suggests appropriate syntax, functions, classes, and variables based on the context of the code.

What we like: Komodo offers a range of advanced editing features, including syntax highlighting, code folding, and code refactoring.

Best for: Development teams who need to collaborate

Pricing: Free plans are available. Pro plans cost $8 monthly. Team plans cost $84 monthly. Enterprise pricing is available upon request.

16. CodeLobster

Best JavaScript IDE, CodeLobster

Originally designed for PHP, CodeLobster also supports JavaScript, making it great for web development teams. It features advanced autocomplete, a debugger, code highlighting, and collapsing.

CodeLobster is known for its lightweight design, ensuring fast performance even on less powerful machines. This makes it efficient to work with, allowing developers to write code without any lag or delay.

What we like: CodeLobster offers 10 multilingual interfaces.

Best for: Individual coders or development teams

Pricing: Free versions are available. Paid plans can be discussed upon request.

17. TextMate

Best JavaScript IDE, TextMate

This powerful, open-source text editor is designed specifically for macOS. It supports many programming languages, including JavaScript. TextMate offers a powerful bundle system that allows developers to extend and customize the editor's functionality.

TextMate supports a vast collection of community-created plugins that extend its functionality. Developers can install plugins for additional features, such as code linting, code formatting, Git integration, code beautification, and more, enhancing the JavaScript development experience.

What we like: TextMate has a minimalist and clutter-free interface that focuses on providing a distraction-free coding environment.

Best for: Mac users

Pricing: Free

18. Adobe Dreamweaver

Best JavaScript IDE, Adobe Dreamweaver

Focused on creating websites, Dreamweaver supports HTML, CSS, and JavaScript to help you quickly create and publish beautiful web pages. It features a simplified coding engine to help streamline the process and is adaptable to different workflows.

Dreamweaver provides a visual interface that allows developers to create and edit JavaScript code using a WYSIWYG (What You See Is What You Get) editor. This makes it easier for beginner or non-technical users to work with JavaScript.

What we like: Dreamweaver seamlessly integrates with other Adobe products like Photoshop, Illustrator, and Animate.

Best for: Web developers who already use Adobe products

Pricing: Plans start at $20.99 monthly.

19. SourceLair

Best JavaScript IDE, SourceLair

SourceLair is a fully-featured IDE that supports Python and JavaScript. It lives in your browser, which is great for developers who need a portable option. It features various tech stacks, an efficient interface, and all you need to make and test your code.

SourceLair also has built-in deployment capabilities. This enables developers to easily deploy their applications to various platforms with a single click.

What we like: SourceLair provides a seamless development workflow by integrating with popular Version Control Systems (VCS) like Git.

Best for: Developers who don’t want to download software

Pricing: Free plans are available. Lite plans cost $10 monthly. Pro plans cost $25 monthly.

Final Thoughts on the Top JavaScript IDEs

Your coding workflow and productivity can significantly improve by selecting the right JavaScript IDE. When picking an IDE, consider your experience level and the requirements of your projects. Experiment with various IDEs to determine the one that best suits you.

This article was written by a human, but our team uses AI in our editorial process. Check out our full disclosure to learn more about how we use AI.

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Topics: Javascript

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