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What Are the Best C and C++ IDEs for Software Developers?

C and C++ are popular programming languages used in many areas of software development, from building device drivers and development for embedded systems to desktop applications and rich UI creation. These two languages form the foundation for other popular programming languages like C#, PHP, Python, Java, and many others.

An IDE Integrated development environment (IDE) is an environment in a programming language for editing and debugging the source code. This type of environment often has built-in support for compilation as well. It is also used for analysis and compilation, including interpreting the result of an analysis step, doing compile-time code optimization, generating code for integration into an operating system, or generating code for run-time compilation. There might be numerous IDEs depending on the programming language, but we will highlight the most impressive IDEs for C and C++ development.

Top C/C++ IDEs

1. Eclipse

Eclipse is definitely one of the most popular IDEs. It provides a number of different coding tools to create efficient, understandable, and easily-comprehensible code. It has some impressive compiler and compilation-related features, like bytecode optimization and even compile-time type safety. It supports debugging, compiling, profiling, auto-completion of code, and refactoring.

Eclipse IDE for C and C++ development

2. NetBeans

NetBeans is a cross-platform development environment for Java (Java SE) applications, including HTML5, CSS3, XML, Java Script, Objective-C and C++.

Unlike traditional IDEs, NetBeans is easily integrated into web browsers and enterprise productivity systems, allowing to extend the functionality of a single IDE with a variety of editing, debugging, profiling, web services, and other development tools. It comes with automatic indentation, semantic highlighting, and formatting (provides a choice of formatting styles), code folding, bracket matching, and templates.

NetBeans IDE for C and C++ development

3. Visual Studio

Visual Studio is a full-featured C++ IDE that allows creating C++ apps on Windows using a wide variety of tools. Its toolchain includes the managed frameworks Visual Basic and Visual C++, as well as the free, open-source plugins based on Visual Studio C++ and the Visual Studio Tools for Visual Studio (VSVC). Visual Studio’s IDE is supported on Mac, Linux, and many other operating systems. Both C++ and C# projects can be created in Visual Studio.

Visual Studio IDE for C and C++ development

4. Qt Creator

Qt Creator is a powerful IDE for C++ development. It supports all major OS platforms and is truly cross-platform: it allows sharing projects using a single development tool on different operating systems. It also allows debugging, compiling, profiling, auto-completion of code, and refactoring. In addition to that, it supports static code analysis, has one of the best GUI designers based on the Qt framework, and is super fast.

Qt Creator IDE for C and C++ development

5. Xcode

Xcode is an IDE for Mac OS. It supports such programming languages as C++, Objective-C, and Swift. It contains most of the features the other IDEs provide, and it can be also integrated with Apple’s online developer services like iTunes Connect. This means that developers can publish their apps on the App Store and can use Apple services such as iCloud in the apps they’ve designed.

Xcode IDE for C and C++ development

Bottom Line

Overall, most IDE’s allow writing bug-free code more efficiently and faster. They increase productivity by providing several features like code completion, syntax highlighting, debugging, and refactoring. However, choosing the right IDE is very important as each one has its own advantages and disadvantages. These are just a few IDEs popular among C and C++ developers and developers looking to build an app on a certain platform will prefer one over the other.

If you have a project to execute in C or C++ and are looking for expert help please feel free to contact us. Our development team will analyze your case and suggest an optimal solution.