What is an IDE?

 An IDE or an Integrated Development Environment is a type of software where developers can develop many software’s and applications and run the programs inside it. An Integrated Development Environment (IDE) mainly consists of a source code editor, a debugger and an inbuilt automation tool for running the program.

A Python IDE is a software where we can write the programs in Python, run the Python programs and debug them. We can build many applications and software using various kinds of IDEs.

In the market, various kinds of IDE available for Python. Each IDE has its own specification and some unique features, and there are different IDE available for different purposes.

We have categorized the IDE of Python into three major categories, and each IDE falls in one of the three categories. Following is the name of the three categories of Python IDEs:

  1. Python IDEs which contains introspection-based code completion and have integrated debugger
  2. Python IDEs which contains introspection-based code completion or have integrated debugger
  3. Python IDEs, which have integrated GUI builder.

First, we will discuss about the IDEs from each category and in which OS (Operating System) they are available. Then, we will talk in detail about some famous IDEs irrespective of the category to which they belong to.

1. Python IDEs, which contains introspection-based code completion and have integrated debugger:

An IDE where we can write our code and debug it at the same time falls under this category. These types of Python IDEs are mostly preferred by developers as they can debug their program while working on it.

Following is the list of Python IDEs which falls under this category:

  • PyCharm (Available for Linux, Mac, or Windows): It is an open-source, free Python IDE with a very large community.
  • PyDev (Run on Eclipse) It is a free, open-source plug-in for Eclipse.
  • PyScripter (Available for Windows) MIT licensed Python IDE written in Delphi.
  • Spyder (Available for Windows, Mac and Linux) Scientific Open-source environment for Python, which is also written on Python.
  • LiClipse (Available for Linux, Windows and MacOS) Commercial Eclipse-based IDE for Python.
  • Thonny (Available for Windows, Linux, MacOS and more) IDE for teaching and learning programming.
  • NetBeans (Available for Linux, Solars, Windows and MacOS) can be used for Python/Jython.
  • PyZo [Formally known as IEP] (Available for Windows, MacOS and Windows) open-source Python IDE useful for scientific computing.
  • Komodo (Available for Windows/Linux/ MacOS) multi-language IDE, which supports Python 2.x version.
  • Python for VS code (Available for Windows, Linux and Mac OS) Free, open-source Python extension provided by Visual Studio code.
  • KDevelop (Available for Linux, Windows and MacOS) Free, open-source IDE which mainly focuses on static code compilation.
  • IDLE (Available for Windows, MacOS, Linux and All TK platforms) 100% pure Python IDE and a part of Python 2.x and Python 3.x distribution.
  • Exedore (Available only for MacOS) commercial Python IDE, which having feature-limited free trail.
  • Wing (Available for Windows, Linux and MacOS) is a part of the Python IDEs family with an advanced debugger.

The above-mentioned are the main Python IDEs that fall under this category of IDEs.

2. Python IDEs, which contains introspection-based code completion or have integrated debugger:

This category of IDEs has a real-time debugger for Python programs or an introspection-based code completion text editor for developers. Following is the list of Python IDEs which fall under this category:

  • SPE (Available for Windows, Linux, FreeBSD, MacOS and more) open-source Python IDE with the wxPython Interface.
  • Ninja-IDE (Available for Windows, Linux and MacOS) is a cross-platform IDE specially used for Python.
  • Pcode (Available for Windows, Linux and MacOS) Python 3x IDE.
  • BlackAdder (Available for Window and Linux) is a commercial and integrated debugger with Qt Designer interfaces.
  • Komodo (Available for Windows, MacOS and Linux) is an open-source Python IDE that is a part of the open Komodo project.
  • Eric (Runs integrated with Python or PyQt) is an open-source interface which having a Qt designer.
  • Pida (Available for Linux and FreeBSD only) is an open-source Python IDE that having GTK interfaces written in Python.
  • SharpDevelop (integrated with .net CLR) is a FOSS IDE that uses IronPython for supporting Python modules.
  • Aptana Studio 3(Available for Linux, MacOS and Windows) is a professional and open-source development tool for the open web.

The above-mentioned are the main Python IDEs that fall under this category of IDEs.

3. Python IDEs which have integrated GUI builder:

There are many Python IDEs that have in-built GUI (Graphic User Interface) support for Python. In such IDEs, we can work on the GUI of a Python application or software. Python IDEs with GUI support is very helpful in developing games or many other applications with interactive UI. Following is the list of Python IDEs which have integrated GUI builder support in them:

  • XCode (Available for MacOS 10.5 and later versions) Apple’s IDE for Python with full GUI making.
  • MonekyStudio (Available for Windows, Linux and MacOS) RAD GUI IDE for Python, and it is open-source.
  • PythonCard (Runs on Python and wxPython) RAD GUI IDE building for wxPython.
  • Visual Python (Runs on Python and Tkinter) Visual graphic Interface for Python GUI.
  • Studio Python tools for Visual (Available for windows) GUI designer for the IronPython with integrated WPF GUI.

All the above-mentioned IDEs for Python have integrated GUI builder, which is preferred by many developers.

Some Famous IDEs for Python:

IDEs are a very important coding tool that is very useful to automate the process of SDLC (Software Development Life Cycle) like editing, compiling, testing of code etc. Till now, we have known about all the Python IDEs which are available under each category of IDE. Now, we will discuss in detail some famous IDEs for Python irrespective of their type and category.

Following is the list of some famous IDEs available for Python and preferred by most developers:

1. PyCharm

2. PyDev

3. Wing

4. Eric Python

5. Rodeo

6. Thonny

7. Spyder

8. Jupyter Notebook

9. Atom

10. Microsoft Visual Studio for Python

Let’s discuss each of them in detail.

1. PyCharm:

PyCharm is a cross-platform IDE specifically developed for the Python work environment. PyCharm was developed by the one of the tech giants Jet Brains. PyCharm is the most widely used IDE for Python. It has both a free open-source and paid version of IDE.

  • PyCharm saves ample time by following the routine of the user.
  • PyCharm is the fully Python IDE with many in-built rich features for Python.

Getting Started with PyCharm: –

We will learn how to install PyCharm on our device and how to work with it.

Installation of PyCharm

In this section, we will learn how to install PyCharm on our device with Python extension. Before proceeding with the installation of PyCharm, please make sure that the latest version of Python (3.7 or 3.9) should be installed in your system. Please refer to www.python.org for installing Python in the system.

Now, let’s move forward with the  installation of PyCharm in our system. We have to follow the below steps to successfully install and set up PyCharm in our system:

Step 1: Go to the official website of Jet Brains and then go to the download section of Jet brains, or we can directly follow the link given below:

https://www.jetbrains.com/pycharm/download/#section=linux

As we can see the two options available for PyCharm, i.e., PyCharm for professionals and PyCharm community (open-source) in the above image. The PyCharm professional is a paid tool for Python IDE with a one-month free trial, whereas the PyCharm community is an open-source IDE for Python without any cost. We will proceed with the PyCharm community in our installation part of PyCharm.

Step 2: Click on the download button of the PyCharm community. The following window will open after clicking on the download button:

As we can see, that PyCharm community is started downloading on our device.

Step 3: Go to the download folder of the device after completion of the PyCharm community download. Right-click on PyCharm and select ‘Open.’

Step 4: A window will open, and it asks if we want PyCharm to modify inside our system. Select ‘Yes.’

Step 5: Now, the installation window for PyCharm is opened. Click on ‘Next’ to continue.

Step 6: Now, we have to select the installation options. Select 64-bit launcher, add ‘Open Folder as Project’ and ‘.py’ and click on continue.

Step 7: Now, PyCharm is started installing on our device.

Step 8: When PyCharm will be completely installed, press on the ‘Finish’ button and PyCharm is installed in our system.

Working on PyCharm

PyCharm is successfully installed in our system. Now, let’s start working with PyCharm and see how we can write, save and run our code in PyCharm.

Step 1: As we can see in our desktop window, the PyCharm shortcut is already created. Open PyCharm by double-clicking on it.

Step 2: When PyCharm will open, a pre-loaded main.py Python file is already opened in PyCharm.

Step 3: Run the code:

Use the run button given on the top right (Green play button) to run the Python code written in the main.py file.

When PyCharm runs the code, the following output will be shown in the PyCharm window:

As we can see, PyCharm has run the code successfully. And that’s how we can run the code we will write in our file.

Step 4: Open New Project

Go to the File option on the top right and select a new project. The following window will appear on our screen:

We have to select a pure Python project and choose the directory of the project folder and give the name of it. That’s how we can open a different project folder through PyCharm itself.

Step 5: Open New file:

Go to the File option and select a new file. The following window will appear on the screen:

Select Python file and name it with .py extension, and PyCharm will save this file in an already opened project.

Step 6: Opening a Python file from the device

Go to the File option and select Open.

Select the file from the device where we have saved it. For example, we have selected the code.py file we have used in previous sections.

Step 7: Run the opened file

Now, after opening a file and after writing and editing code in it, it’s time to run the file. Left to the run button, click on it and choose edit configuration.

Choose the file we have opened. Now, PyCharm will run the code of the chosen file. Click on the run button, and our code is running successfully in Python.

That’s how we can work with PyCharm on many Python projects.

Features of PyCharm:

Below are some major features of PyCharm:

  • Auto-code compilation
  • Fast error checking and correction
  • Smart code navigation
  • Remote development support
  • Error highlighting
  • Supports many Python web development frameworks such as Angular JS, JavaScript etc.
  • Quick project navigation
  • Database accessibility etc.

2. PyDev:

PyDev is one of the most commonly Python IDEs used by developers. PyDev is an external plug-in for Python used in Eclipse. PyDev is the most popular choice among developers who are coming from a Java background.

  • PyDev is very popular in the market of Python interpreters.
  • Aleksandar Totic is very famous for his contribution and PyDev projects between 2003 and 2004.

Features of PyDev:

Below are the major features of PyDev:

  • Django Integration
  • Strong Parameters such as debugging code, code analysis, refactoring, code coverage function etc.
  • Automatic code compilation
  • Supports virtual environment, black and MyPy formatter.
  • Smart indents
  • Block indents
  • Remote debugger
  • Unit test integration
  • PyLint integration etc.

3. Wing

The Wing is a cross-platform IDE available for Python. The wing is packed with all necessary features and has very decent development support for Python. The personal version of Wing edition is free for everyone.

Features of Wing:

Following are the major features of Wing:

  • Auto compilation
  • Customizable and have many extensions as well.
  • Supports remote development
  • Syntax highlighting
  • Indents
  • Inbuilt debugger
  • Test-driven development etc.

4. Eric Python:

Eric Python is an editor that is built on Python itself. Eric Python can be used for both professional and personal work on Python.

Features of Eric Python:

Following are the major features which we can see in Eric Python:

  • Advance project management capability
  • In-built debugger
  • Source code folding
  • Advance version control
  • Configurable window layout
  • Task management support etc.

5. Rodeo:

Rodeo is known as one of the best IDE available for Python. Rodeo IDE is most commonly used for a data science project. We can work on many projects, like taking data and information from various resources. Rodeo is available on cross-platform.

Features of Rodeo:

Below are the major features which we can see in Rodeo:

  • Cross-platform functionality
  • Functions for comparing data, inspect, plot and interact data etc.
  • Auto code compilation
  • Visual file navigator
  • Syntax highlighter etc.

6. Thonny:

Thonny is an IDE for Python, which is considered best suited for learning and teaching Python programming. Thonny is a software which is developed at the University of Tartu.

Features of Thonny:

Following are the major features which we can see in Thonny:

  • Simple integrated debugger
  • Supports code completion
  • Highlights syntax error etc.

7. Spyder:

Spyder has highly recognized in the market of Python IDE. Spyder is an open-source platform and another Python IDE which is most suitable for data science projects. Spyder supports a various number of scientific modules like SciPy, Numpy etc.

  • Full-Form of Spyder: Full name of Spyder IDE is Scientific Python Development Environment.

Features of Spyder:

Below are the major features of Spyder:

  • Localized code editor
  • Variable explorer
  • Proper syntax highlighting
  • Integrates strongly with IPython Console
  • Document viewer
  • Well performance with the multi-language editor.
  • Auto code completion mode etc.

8. Jupyter Notebook:

Jupyter Notebook is the notebook editor for Python programming. It is one of the most important widely used IPython notebook editors that is used in the field of the data science industry. Jupyter Notebook is another IDE for Python that is most commonly used in the data science and research field.

  • Jupyter Notebook is a web application notebook editor.
  • Jupyter Notebook is based on the client-server structure.
  • It allows us to create and modify notebook documents.
  • Jupyter Notebook is best using the feature of Python language, i.e., Python is an interpreted language.

Features of Jupyter Notebook:

Following are some in-build features of the Jupyter Notebook:

  • Easy creation of codes
  • Supports markdowns in notebooks
  • Suitable for beginners in the field of data science
  • Easy editing of codes etc.

9. Atom:

Atom is another famous IDE available for Python programming. Atom IDE is developed by the famous tech hub GitHub. Initially, Atom was started as a cross-platform open-source.

  • The Atom IDE is based on the Electron framework.
  • It enables us to use a cross-platform desktop application using node.js and chromium.
  • Atom is generally known as “Hackable text editor for 21st Century.”

Features of Atom:

Following are some in-build features of Atom:

  • Built-in support for editing and visualizing Markdown files using “Markdown preview plus” plug-in.
  • The result can be visualized in the Atom window itself etc.

10. Microsoft Visual Studio for Python:

Visual Studio was an open-source text editor for cross-platform. Microsoft now owns visual Studio. Microsoft Visual Studio is another famous IDE used for Python programming using Python plug-in. It is best suited for developing and debugging the latest web development and cloud projects.

Features of Microsoft Visual Studio:

Following are some in-build features of Microsoft Visual Studio:

  • It has in-build support for Python programming.
  • Available both free and pro versions of it
  • It Can be used for program debugging

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