Software development with the PHP programming language is a venture many developers enjoy as long as they have the right integrated development environment (IDE) solution. Among many IDEs available to PHP developers, PhpStorm stands out as one of the most adopted IDEs in software development companies; however, there are alternatives to PhpStorm available for PHP developers to explore. Here is a breakdown of the best PhpStorm alternative to help you make a choice, if you need to expand your IDE tools.
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What is PhpStorm?
Notable PhpStorm features
PhpStorm offers quite a few notable features. Knowing them will help you compare other alternatives before deciding on which one to give a try.
- Support for PHP frameworks: PhpStorm is the ideal option for using PHP frameworks, including several well-known frameworks like CakePHP, Symfony, Laravel, Drupal and WordPress.
- Intelligent coding assistance: PhpStorm can automatically complete code syntax and tags whenever necessary.
- Support for databases: With PhpStorm, databases and SQL code implementation are simple, and users can connect to the database, change the tables, run different queries, and even examine the schemas with UML diagrams.
- Git and GitHub integration: Having Git and GitHub branching and merging features is crucial. Apart from GitHub support, other version control methods such as FTP are also supported to enable quick code uploads to distant servers.
- Testing, debugging and profiling: The Visual Debugger offers a wide range of tools for debugging, including the ability to inspect variables and user-defined watches, create breakpoints, troubleshoot remote applications, debug a page in many sessions at once, and more.
Top free alternatives to PhpStorm
Below are free IDE solutions that work as great PhpStorm alternatives for developers.
Apache NetBeans is one of the best open-source and free alternatives to PhpStorm for business and individual use. The tool features smart editing tools that allow developers to refactor their codes easily.
It is also compatible with many operating systems such as macOS, Windows and Linux. In addition, Apache Netbeans supports GitHub integration and other version control tools for easy source control management.
CodeLobster is a cross-platform IDE that simplifies PHP development by featuring powerful auto completion attributes for arguments, functions, tags and more in multiple programming languages. The IDE’s built-in assistance explains some functions within the IDE via the F1 key on a keyboard.
It also features an internal debugger that allows developers to validate their code locally. In addition, the IDE can automatically reset current server settings and configure files to let users use the debugger easily.
Top paid alternatives to PhpStorm
The Zend Studio IDE is designed to create robust PHP applications that boost the developer’s productivity. This IDE combines mobile applications with PHP; offers great features like a smart code editor to write code more quickly; and supports the use of resources such as GitFlow, Docker and Eclipse. It also features popular frameworks, source control and cloud alternatives.
Codeanywhere is a paid PhpStorm alternative. It is a Cloud IDE designed to save developers time by enabling them to quickly code, build and collaborate on projects from a browser.
The Codeanywhere development environment supports all major programming languages and is packed with pre-installed tools and databases. The IDE allows developers to spin up powerful containers in seconds that can be fully preconfigured for the programming environment of their choice.
Another important feature of this IDE is that it enables developers to host an application or web page directly on a container.
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