Top 15 Python IDEs and Code Editors to Use in 2023

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03rd Jan, 2023
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Top 15 Python IDEs and Code Editors to Use in 2023

Over the years, Python language has evolved enormously with the contribution of developers. Python is one of the most popular programming languages. It was designed primarily for server-side web development, software development, evaluation, scripting, and artificial intelligence. For this feature, Python encloses certain code editors and python IDEs used for software development say, Python itself. If you are new to programming, learning Python is highly recommended as it is fast, efficient, and easy to learn. 

Python Programming course online should do the trick for working professionals looking to make inroads into Python without quitting their job. Python interpreters are available on various operating systems, such as Windows, Linux, and Mac OS. This article looks at the top python IDEs and code editors along with their features, pros, and cons and discusses the best suited for writing Python codes. But first, let us see what code editors and IDEs are. 

What is a Code Editor? 

A code editor is built for editing and modifying source code. A standalone text editor is used for writing and editing computer programs. Excellent ones can execute code, control a debugger, and interact with source control systems. Compared to an IDE, a good dedicated code editor is usually smaller and quicker but is less functional. Typically they are optimized for programming languages. One major feature of a text editor is that they are designed to modify various files and work with whatever language or framework you choose. 

What is Python IDE? 

Python IDE (Integrated Development Environment) understands the code significantly better than a text editor. It is a program exclusively built for software development. It is designed with a set of tools that all work together:  

  • Text editor  
  • Compiler 
  • Build automation 
  • Debugging 
  • Libraries, and many more to speed up the work.  

These tools integrate An editor designed to frame codes with text formatting, auto-completion, etc., build, execution, debugging tools, file management, and source and version control. It reduces manual efforts and combines all the equipment in a typical framework. IDE comes with heavy files. Hence, the downloads and installation are quite tedious. IDE requires expertise along with a lot of patience. Hence, programmers with Advanced Python Training at work or on immersive learning platforms often go through a fine transition in the installation stages.

How Does a Python IDEs and Code editor Differ from Each Other? 

An IDE is distinctive from code editors in the following ways: 

1. Integrated build process: The user does not have to write his own scripts to build apps in an IDE.  

2. File management: IDE has an integrated file management system and deployment tool. It provides support to another framework as well. On the other hand, a Text editor is a simple editor where source code can be edited, and it has no other formatting or compiling options. 

3. Development Environment: An IDE is mainly used for development purposes as it provides comparatively better features than a text editor. It allows you to write, compile and debug the entire script.  

4. Syntax Highlighting: The editor displays the text message and puts the source code in different colors to improve its readability. Even error messages are displayed in different colors so that the user understands where he has written the wrong code.  

5. Auto-completion: It instantly identifies and inserts a common code for the user. This feature acts as an assistant for the programmer. The code suggestion automatically gets displayed.  

6. Debugger: This tool helps the programmer test and debug the source code of the main program.  

Although IDEs have far better features than Text editors, one major sign of a Text editor is that it allows modifying all types of files rather than specifying any definite language or types. 

Features of Python IDE

For good software development, we need code editors and IDEs, which help the developer automate the process of editing, compiling, testing, debugging, and much more. Some of the features of these editors are listed below: 

1. Good user interface: They allow users to interact and run programs easily. 

2. Incredibly fast: Although these IDEs need to import heavy libraries, compile and debug, they offer fast compilation and run time.  

3. Syntax stylizing: Codes are colorized automatically, and syntax is highlighted.    

4. Debugging tool: It runs the code, sets breakpoints, and examines the variables.

  • Integrated development environments (IDEs) provide programmers with debugging tools that simplify finding errors in their code if a program does not execute as expected. 
  • The ability to walk through your code as it executes is a fundamental function in all IDEs and most competent code editors.

5. Provides good language syntax: IDEs usually work on a specific language, but the others are designed for multi-language support. Code editors are designed with multi-language support.  

6. Good source and version control environment: IDEs come with a source control feature to keep track of changes made in source code and other text files during software development. 

7. Intelligent code completion: This feature speeds up the coding process by automatically suggesting incomplete codes. It reduces typos and other common mistakes. 

8. Syntax Accentuating: Reading and comprehending code is much simpler if you can easily locate important elements like keywords, variables, and symbols. If your IDE is familiar with your language's grammar, it will be able to give visual hints and keywords that make the code simpler to comprehend.

Top 10 Python IDE and Code Editors OF 2023

There are various Python IDEs and text editors. Some of the IDEs and text editors along with their features and pros and cons are mentioned below: 

1. IDLE

IDLE
Key Features: It is an open-source IDE entirely written in Python. It is mainly supported by WINDOWS, LINUX, MAC OS, etc. IDLE is a decent IDE for learning because it is lightweight and quite simple to use. IDLE is installed by default as soon as the installation of Python is complete. This makes it easier to get started in Python. IDLE features include the Python shell window(interactive interpreter), auto-completion, syntax highlighting, smart indentation, and a basic integrated debugger. It is however not suitable for the completion of larger projects and is best suitable for educational purposes only.  

Pros 

  • A cross-platform where a developer can search within any window, search through multiple files and replace within the windows editor  
  • Supports syntax highlighting, auto code completion, smart indentation and editable configurations 
  • Includes Python shell with highlighter 
  • Powerful Integrated Debugger with continuous breakpoints, global view, and local spaces 
  • Improves the performance  
  • Call stack visibility 
  • Increases the flexibility for developers 

Cons 

  • Used for programming just for beginners 
  • Limited to handle normal usage issues. 
  • Supports basic design  
  • Large software development cannot be handled  

2. Sublime text 

Sublime text

Key Features: It is a source code editor supported on all platforms. It is a very popular cross-platform and a better text editor. It possesses built-in support for Python for code editing and packages to extend the syntax and editing features. All Sublime Text packages are written in Python and also a Python API. Installation of the packages often requires you to execute scripts directly in Sublime Text. it is designed to support huge programming and markup languages. Additional functions can be applied by the user with the help of plugins.  

Pros 

  • More reliable for developers and is cross-platform 
  • Supports GOTO anything to access files  
  • Generates a wide index of each method, class, and function. 
  • AllowsUser interface toolkit 
  • Easy navigation to words or symbols 
  • Multiple selections to change things at one time 
  • Offers command palette to sort, edit and modify the syntax and maintain the indentation.  
  • Offers powerful API and package ecosystem 
  • Great performance 
  • Highly customizable 
  • Allows split editing and instant project switch  
  • Better compatibility with language grammar 
  • Custom selection on specific projects 

Cons 

  • Not free 
  • Installation of extensions is quite tricky 
  • Does not support direct executing or debugging code from within the editor 
  • Less active GIT plugin

Access the site at http://www.sublimetext.com  

3. Atom

Atom

Key Features: It is an open-source code editor developed by GitHub. It is supported on all platforms. It has features similar to that of Python. It has a framework based on atom shells which helps to achieve cross-platform functionality. With a sleek interface, file system browser, and marketplace for extensions, it offers a framework for creating desktop applications using JavaScript, HTML, and CSS. Extensions can be installed when Atom is running. It enables support for third-party packages. Its major feature is that although it is a code editor, it can also be used as an IDE. It is also used for educational purposes. Atom is being improvised day by day, striving to make the user experience rewarding and not remain confined to beginner use only.  

Pros 

  • Cross-platform  
  • Smooth editing 
  • Improves performance of its users 
  • Offers built-in package manager and file system browser 
  • Faster scripting  
  • Offers smart auto-completion  
  • Smart and flexible 
  • Supports multiple pane features 
  • Easy navigation across an application 
  • Simple to use 
  • Allows user interface customization 
  • Full support from GitHub 
  • Quick access to data and information 

Cons 

  • For beginners only 
  • Tedious for sorting configurations and plugins 
  • Clumsy tabs reduce performance  
  • Slow loading 
  • Runs on JavaScript process  
  • Built on Electron, does not run as a native application

Access the site at https://atom.io  

4. Vim

Vim

Key Features: Categorized as stable open-source code editors, VI and VIM are modal editors. As it is supported on almost every platform, such as Windows, LINUX, MAC OS, IOS, Android, UNIX, AmigaOS, MorphOS, etc., it is highly configurable. Because of its modal mode of operation, it differs from most other text editors. It possesses three basic modes: insert mode, normal or command mode, and command line mode. It is easily customized by the addition of extensions and configuration, which makes it easily adaptable for Python development.  

Pros 

  • Free and easily accessible 
  • Customizable and persistent  
  • Has a multi-level undo tree  
  • Extensions are added manually 
  • The configuration file is modified 
  • Multi-buffers support simultaneous file editing 
  • Automated indentation  
  • Good user interface 
  • Recognition and conversion of file formats 
  • Exclusive libraries, including a wide range of languages 
  • Comes with own scripting language with powerful integration, search and replace functionality 
  • An extensive system of plugins 
  • Allows debugging and refactoring  
  • Provides two different modes to work: normal and editing mode 
  • Strings in VIM can be saved and reused  

Cons 

  • Used as a text editor only 
  • No different color for the pop-up option 
  • Not good for beginners 

5. PyDev 

PyDev

Key Features: It is also categorized as an open-source IDE mainly written with JAVA. Since it is an eclipse plugin, the Java IDE is transformed into Python IDE. Its integration with Django gives a Python framework. It also has keyword auto-completion, a good debugging tool, syntax highlighting, and indentation. 

Pros 

  • Free open source 
  • Robust IDE feature set 
  • Auto-completion of codes and analysis 
  • Smart indentation 
  • Interactive console shortcuts 
  • Integrated with Django configuration  
  • Platform independent 

Cons

  • The user interface is not great  

6. Visual studio

Visual studio
Key Features: It is categorized as an IDE and is a full-featured IDE developed by Microsoft. It is compatible with Windows and Mac OS only and comes with free as well as paid versions. It has its own marketplace for extensions. PTVS(Python Tools for Visual Studio) offers various features such as in coding for Python development, IntelliSense, debugging, refactoring, etc. 

Pros 

  • Easy and less tedious installation for development purposes 

Cons 

  • Spacious files  
  • Not supported on Linux 

7. Visual studio code 

Visual studio code
Key Features: VS code is a code editor and is way more different from VS. It is a free, open-source code editor developed by Microsoft that can be run on platforms such as Windows, Linux, and Mac OS X.  It has a full-featured editor that is highly configurable with Python compatibility for software development. Python tools can be added to enable coding in Python.VS code is integrated with Git, which promotes it to perform operations like push and commits directly from the editor itself. It also has an electron framework for Node JS applications running on the Blink browser engine. It is enclosed with smart code completion with a function definition, imported modules, and variable types. Apart from these, VS code also comes with syntax highlighting, a debugging console, and proprietary IntelliSense code auto-completion. After installing Python, VS code recognizes Python files and libraries immediately.  

Pros 

  • Free and available on every platform  
  • Small, light-weight but highly extensible 
  • Huge compatibility 
  • Has a powerful code management system 
  • Enables debugging from the editor 
  • Multi-language support  
  • Extensive libraries 
  • Smart user interface and an acceptable layout 

Cons 

  • Slow search engine 
  • Tedious launch time 
  • Not a native app, just like Atom

Access the site at https://code.visualstudio.com  

8. Wing

Wing

Key Features: Wing is also one of the most powerful IDEs today and comes with a lot of good features. It is an open-source IDE used commercially. It also is constituted with a strong framework and has a strong debugger and smart editor for Python development, making it fast, accurate, and fun to perform. It comes with a 30-day trial version. It supports text-driven development with unit test, PyTest, and Django testing framework.  

Pros 

  • Open source 
  • Find and go-to definition 
  • Customizable and extensible 
  • Auto-code completion 
  • Quick Troubleshoot  
  • The source browser shows all the variables used in the script 
  • Powerful debugger  
  • Good refactoring  

Cons 

  • Not capable of supporting dark themes 
  • Wing interface is quite intimidating 
  • The commercial version is expensive 

9. Eclipse + PyDev

PyDev – Python IDE

You've probably heard about Eclipse if you've spent time in the open-source world. Eclipse is the standard open-source integrated development environment (IDE) for developing Java applications. It is available for Linux, Windows, and OS X . Because of its extensive library of available plugins and plugins, Eclipse may be used for various programming tasks. 

Debugging, code completion and an interactive console are all made possible with the help of an add-on called PyDev. Adding PyDev to Eclipse is straightforward; go to the Help menu in Eclipse, pick Eclipse Marketplace, and then search PyDev. Select Install, and then relaunch Eclipse if prompted to do so. 

  • Strong Python interpreter PyDev is available as a plugin for the Eclipse IDE. 

  • Among the open-source IDEs, it is highly regarded for its adaptability, making it a favorite among programmers. 

  • Without cost to the customer 

  • Code coverage, auto-completion, and Django integration 

  • It has features for code analysis, debugging, and type hinting. 

  • There is a strong backbone for Python web development. 

Advantages and Disadvantages of PyDev: 

  • Pros: Integrating PyDev into your workflow will be a breeze if you've already had Eclipse set up. To the seasoned Eclipse programmer, PyDev will seem like second nature. 

  • Cons: Eclipse might be overwhelming for those who are just starting with Python or general software development. Remember that IDEs are more complex and time-consuming to learn than standalone IDEs. All in all, Eclipse is a great piece of software. 

Access the site at: https://www.pydev.org/

10. GNU Emacs

  • The Emacs family of text editors (formerly known as EMACS) is notable for its adaptability. 'The flexible, customizable, self-documenting, real-time display editor' is how GNU Emacs, the most popular distribution, is described in the user manual. 

  • There was a time before the iPhone vs. Android conflict, before the Linux vs. Windows war, and before the PC vs. Mac fight when there was the Editor War, in which GNU Emacs played a role. GNU Emacs has a dedicated user base and has been around almost as long as UNIX. It is promoted as "the flexible, customizable, self-documenting, real-time display editor." 

  • Since GNU Emacs python ide mac updates the screen in real-time as changes are made, it is considered a real-time display editor. This is now expected of all current text editors, although EMACS pioneered this feature. Instead of needing to submit a separate command to show the text (e.g., after modifying it). 

  • GNU Emacs, which is always free and accessible on every platform (in some form), employs a variant of the powerful Lisp programming language for customization, and several customization scripts exist for Python development. 

Advantages and Disadvantages of GNU Emacs: 

  • Pros: You are familiar with Emacs, have experience with Emacs, and have a deep appreciation for Emacs. If you know a second language, like Lisp, then you know that you can do anything. 

  • Cons: Modifying the program requires manually inserting (or copying and pasting) Lisp code into separate script files. The ability to do so may require learning Lisp if it is not currently supplied. 

Access the site at https://www.gnu.org/software/emacs/ 

Python-specific IDEs and Editors 

1. Anaconda - Jupyter Notebooks

Anaconda - Jupyter Notebooks

Key Features: It is also an open-source IDE with a server-client structure used to create and edit the codes of Python. Once it is saved, you can share live code equations, visualizations, and text. It has anaconda distribution i.e.; libraries are preinstalled so downloading the anaconda itself does the task. It supports Python and R languages which are installed by default at installation.  This IDE is again used for data science learning. Quite easy to use, it is not just used as an editor but also as an educational tool or presentation. It supports numerical simulation, machine learning visualization, and statistical modeling. 

Pros 

  • Free Open source  
  • Good user interface 
  • Server-client structure 
  • Educational tool- Data science, Machine learning  
  • Supports numerical simulation  
  • Enables to create, writing, edit and inserting images 
  • Combines code, text, and images 
  • Integrated libraries - Matplotlib, NumPy, Pandas 
  • Multi-language support 
  • Auto code completion 

Cons 

  • Sometimes slow loading is experienced 

2. Google Colaboratory 

Google Colaboratory

Key Features: It is the simplest web IDE used for Python. It gives free GPU access. Instead of downloading heavy files and tedious launch time, one can directly update the files from Colab to the drive. All you need to do is log in to your google account and open Colab. There is no need for extra setup. Unlike other IDEs, no files are required to download. Google provides free computation resources with Collaboratory. It is designed for creating machine learning models. For compilation and execution, all you need to do is to update the Python package and get started.   

Pros 

  • Available to all 
  • Code can be run without any interruption 
  • Highly user interactive 
  • No heavy file downloads 
  • Integrated libraries 
  • Multi-language support 
  • Updated in google drive 
  • Update the Python package for execution  
  • Runs on cloud 
  • Comments can be added to cells 
  • Can import Jupiter or IPython notebooks 

Cons  

  • All collaboratory files are to be stored in google drive 
  • Install all specific libraries 
  • No access to unsaved files once the session is over 

3. Pycharm 

Pycharm

Key Features: Developed by Jet Brains and one of the widely used full-featured Python IDE, this is a cross-platform IDE for Python programming and is well-integrated with Python console and IPython Notebook. It is supported by Windows, Linux, Mac OS, and other platforms as well. It has massive productivity and saves an ample amount of time. It comes with smart code navigation, a code editor, a good debugging tool, quick refactoring, etc., and supports Python web development frameworks such as Angular JS, JavaScript, CSS, HTML, and live editing functions. The paid version offers advanced features such as full database management and a multitude of Frameworks than the community version, such as Django, Flask, Google App, Engine, Pyramid, and web2py. 

Pros 

  • Great supportive community 
  • Brilliant performance. 
  • Amazing editing tools 
  • Robust debugging tool 
  • Smart code navigation 
  • Quick and safe refactoring  
  • Built-in developer tools 
  • Error detection and fix-up suggestions 
  • Customizable interface 
  • Available in free and paid versions 

Cons 

  • Slow loading  
  • Installation is quite difficult and may hang up in between

Access the site here https://www.jetbrains.com/pycharm  

4. Spyder

Spyder

Key Features: It is an open-source IDE supported on all platforms. Ranked as one of the best Python compilers, it supports syntax highlighting, and auto-completion of codes, just like Pycharm. It offers an advanced level of editing, debugging, quick diagnosis, troubleshooting, and many data exploration features. To get started with Spyder, one needs to install anaconda distribution which is basically used in data science and machine learning. Just like Pycharm, it has IntelliSense auto-completion of code. Spyder is built on a structured and powerful framework which makes it one of the best IDE used so far. It is most commonly used for scientific development. 

Pros 

  • Free, open-source IDE 
  • Quick troubleshoot 
  • Active framework 
  • Smart editing and debugging 
  • The syntax is automatically highlighted 
  • Auto-completion of codes 
  • Good for data science and machine learning 
  • Structured framework 
  • Integrates common Python data science libraries like SciPy, NumPy, and Matplotlib 
  • Finds and eliminates bottlenecks 
  • Explores and edits variables directly from GUI  
  • Performs well in multi-language editor and auto-completion mode 

Cons 

  • Spyder is not capable of configuring a specific warning 
  • Too many plugins degrade its performance

Access the site here https://github.com/spyder-ide/spyder  

5. Thonny

Thonny

Key Features: Thonny is another IDE best suited for beginners for Python development and provides a good virtual environment. It is supported on all platforms. It gives a simple debugger with F5, F6, and F7 keys for debugging. Also, Thonny supports highlighting errors, good representation of function calls, auto code completion, and smart indentation. It even allows the developers to configure their code and shell commands. by default,  in Thonny, Python is pre-installed as it downloads its own version of Python.  

Pros 

  • Simple Graphic user interface.  
  • Free, open-source IDE 
  • Best for beginners 
  • Simple debugger with F5, F6, F7 Keys 
  • Tackles issues with Python interpreters 
  • Highlights syntax error 
  • Auto-completion of code 
  • A good representation of function calls 
  • Users can change reference mode easily 
  • Step through expression evaluation 
  • Reply and resolve comments 

Cons 

  • The interface is not that good for developers 
  • Confined to text editing 
  • No template support 
  • Slow plugin creation 
  • Too basic IDE for software development

Access the site here http://thonny.org   

Why Do We Need a Good Coding Environment? 

For good software development, one seeks a better coding environment. Although features vary from app to app, one must have a definite set of features. There are many other things involved, such as source code control, extension tools, language support, etc. Listed below are the core features which make a good coding environment : 

1. Retrieve files: All the codes written in an IDE get saved. Also, the programmer can retrieve his code file in the same state where the work is left off. 

2. Run within the environment: It should be able to compile and run within the environment where the codes are written. No external file shall be needed to be downloaded for the execution of the programs.  

3. Good Debugging Tool: An IDE or editor should be able to diagnose and troubleshoot the programmer’s work and highlight the lines with errors if any. A pop-up window should display the error message. This way, the programmer can track his errands and diagnose them.   

4. Automatic formatting tool: Indentation is done automatically as soon as the programmer moves on to the next line. It keeps the code clean and readable. 

5. Quick highlighting: keywords, variables, and symbols are highlighted. This feature keeps the code clean and easy to understand. Also, pops up the variables making them easy to spot. This makes it a whole lot easier to pick out portions of code than simply looking at a wall of undifferentiated text. 

Which Python is IDE Right for You? 

Requirements vary from programmer to programmer. It is one’s own choice to pick the right tool that is best suited for the task at hand. Beginners need to use a simple tool with few customizations, whereas experts require tools with advanced features to bring new updates. A few suggestions are listed below 

1. Dependent Upon Your Expertise

  • Beginners should start with IDLE and Thonny as they do not have complex features and are pretty easy to learn.
  • Intermediate: PyCharm, VS Code, Atom, and Sublime Text 3 are solid solutions for intermediate users.   
  • For data science learners, Jupyter Notebooks and Google Colaboratory are preferred.

2. Depending on Your Objective 

  • Data Science: Spyder, Jupyter Notebook, and PyCharm Pro (Paid)
  • Web Development: Visual Studio Code and PyCharm Pro (Paid)
  • Scripting: Atom, PyDev, Sublime Text 3, and PyCharm (Free)

Generally, large-scale enterprises prefer the paid versions of IDEs like PyCharm, Atom, Sublime Text, etc. in order to get extensive service support from the company. Also, they provide easy finance options and manpower. On the other hand, middle and small-scale enterprises tend to look for open-source tools which provide them with excellent features. Some of such IDEs are Spyder, Pydev, IDLE, and Visual Studio. 

Conclusion 

Today, Python stands out as one of the most popular programming languages worldwide. IDE being a program dedicated to software development has made it easier for developers to build, execute, and debug their codes. Code editors can only be used for editing codes whereas an IDE is a feature-rich editor which has an inbuilt text editor, compiler, debugging tool, and libraries. Different IDEs and code editors are detailed in this article, along with their merits and demerits. Some are suitable for beginners because of their lightweight nature and simplicity like IDLE and Thonny whereas experts require advanced featured ones for building software.  

For learning, purposes say, data science, machine learning, Jupyter, and Google Colaboratory are strongly recommended. Again there are large-scale enterprises that prefer PyCharm, Atom, and Sublime Text for software development. On the other hand, small-scale enterprises prefer Spyder, Pydev, IDLE, and Visual Studio. Hence, the type of IDE or code editor that should be used completely depends upon the requirement of the programmer. To gain more knowledge about Python tips and tricks, check our Python tutorial and get a good hold of coding in Python by joining KnowledgeHut's Python Programming course online.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)  

 1. Which IDE is better for Python? 

PyCharm. PyCharm is the integrated development environment (IDE) used by most professional developers in the business world, and it is often regarded as the finest IDE for Python developers. It is a cross-platform integrated development environment (IDE) that was created by the Czech firm JetBrains. It could be the best python IDE for windows. 

2. Which IDE is best for Python beginners? 

Spyder is a user-friendly, lightweight, integrated development environment (IDE) that provides tools to visualize program structure, easy access to documentation, and a conveniently integrated interpreter that allows me to test snippets of code before running entire scripts. I used Spyder to learn Python. 

 3. Do I need IDE for Python? 

Python is an unusual language in that a full-fledged integrated development environment (IDE) doesn't actually improve productivity. However, text editors like Vim and Emacs may be customized to be just as powerful as an IDE, so it doesn't matter which path you choose. 

 4. What does Python IDE do? 

Integrated development environments (IDEs) combine a number of programs designed for that purpose. In general, these instruments consist of A text editor with syntax-editing capabilities (with, for example, syntax highlighting and auto-completion) 

 5. Which Python IDE is used in the industry? 

PyCharm, Spyder, and VS Code are the best python ide used in the industry. These happened to be one of the incredible Python IDEfor Linux. 

Profile

Priyankur Sarkar

Data Science Enthusiast

Priyankur Sarkar loves to play with data and get insightful results out of it, then turn those data insights and results in business growth. He is an electronics engineer with a versatile experience as an individual contributor and leading teams, and has actively worked towards building Machine Learning capabilities for organizations.

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