How to begin with C Programming language – IDE


Well if you are landing on this post that means probably you are just getting into the world of programming and heard about the evergreen programming language or you might looking to refresh your memory and find something cool tips and tricks to make your programming adventure to another level.

Right, Let’s begin with a little brief introduction about Programming Language first. As we know to communicate with other human beings we have tons of different languages. we, similarly, have languages to communicate with machines (i.e computer, smartphone etc) called programming language which you can furthermore read here.

When it comes to programing language you will always hear about the name – ‘C’ which is the oldest yet primitive language to learn whilst beginning with computer science or coding in general. Before diving into the ocean of coding and all logical stuff, we need an environment to set it up based on our taste. I face this issue with the majority of my students that we annoyed by the blue and yellow theme base editor (pretty old stuff they say) namely Turbo C which we will discuss in a moment and I figured out this is the primary reason they hate ‘C’. But, hey, look there are other ways to make it cool, I say to them. So basically I am going to dedicate this post solely to discuss this topic and try to provide to some cool alternative to code other than “Turbo C“.

Here are Some Alternative I believe you should check out:

Offline IDE(s)

Netbeans ( now managed by Apache Community)

Netbeans IDE
Netbeans for C and C++ development
(Windows, Mac and Linux support)
  • The C/C++ editor is well integrated with multi-session GNU GDB debugger tool.
  • Support for code assistance
  • C++11 support
  • Create and run C/C++ tests from within
  • Qt toolkit support
  • Support for automatic packaging of compiled application into .tar, .zip and many more archive files
  • Support for multiple compilers such as GNU, Clang/LLVM, Cygwin, Oracle Solaris Studio and MinGW
  • Support for remote development
  • File navigation
  • Source inspection

Download from here : Netbeans for C/C++


One of my favourite to work with

MonoDevelop IDE
MonoDevelop for C/C++
  • 100% free and open source
  • A Gtk GUI designer
  • Advanced text editing
  • A configurable workbench
  • Multi-language support e.g. C#, F#, Vala, Visual Basic .NET, etc.
  • Unit testing, localization, packaging and deployment, etc.
  • An integrated debugger

Download from here: MonoDevelop

Code:: Blocks ( Windows, Linux and Mac)

* Mac version is quite old though but still works for many

  • Multiple compiler support including GCC, clang, Borland C++ 5.5, digital mars plus many more
  • Very fast, no need for makefiles
  • Multi-target projects
  • A workspace that supports combining of projects
  • Interfaces GNU GDB
  • Support for full breakpoints including code breakpoints, data breakpoints, breakpoint conditions plus many more
  • display local functions symbols and arguments
  • custom memory dump and syntax highlighting
  • Customizable and extensible interface plus many more other features including those added through user built plugins

Download from here: CodeBlocks

Eclipse IDE

( Windows, Linux and Mac)

long time player in the industry

  • Supports project creation
  • Managed build for various toolchains
  • Standard make build
  • Source navigation
  • Several knowledge tools such as call graph, type hierarchy, in-built browser, macro definition browser
  • Code editor with support for syntax highlighting
  • Support for folding and hyperlink navigation
  • Source code refactoring plus code generation
  • Tools for visual debugging such as memory, registers
  • Disassembly viewers and many more

Download from here: Eclipse IDE

CodeLite IDE

( Windows, Linux and Mac)

free, open-source, cross-platform IDE

  • Code completion and it offers two code completion engines
  • Supports several compilers including GCC, clang/VC++
  • Displays errors as code glossary
  • Clickable errors via build tab
  • Support for LLDB next generation debugger
  • GDB support
  • Support for refactoring
  • Code navigation
  • Remote development using built-in SFTP
  • Source control plugins
  • RAD (Rapid Application Development) tool for developing wxWidgets-based apps plus many more features

Download from here: CodeLite IDE

CLion (Paid – for advanced users)

Jetbrain CLion IDE
CLion C/C++ IDE

Download from here: CLion IDE

Offline Text / Code Editor

Sublime Text Editor

Sublime text editor 3
Sublime Text 3
(Windows, Linux and Mac)

Choice of Millions of programmer

  • Multiple selections
  • Command palette
  • Goto anything functionality
  • Distraction free mode
  • Split editing
  • Instant project switching support
  • Highly customizable
  • Plugin API support based on Python plus other small features

Download from here: Sublime text 3

Atom Code Editor

Atom code editor
Atom Editor By GitHub

New yet popular among many

  • Built-in package manager
  • Smart auto-completion
  • In-built file browser
  • Find and replace functionality and many more

Download from here: Atom

Visual Studio Code Editor

Developed by Microsoft and open source

Download from here: VSCode

What about Online Ide, you want to do programming on the go and flexing enough to work from any device you have with only require a web browser. This comes cloud IDE into the picture. Eventually, this is becoming famous among the community since it provides flexibility and comprehensive experience. There are, however, still certain drawbacks to take into consideration but for beginners, it won’t make any difference at all.

Here are some Cloud-based IDE you should check out:

CodeChef (free)

Jdoodle (free)

Cpp Shell Online (free) (Free)

C++ compiler (For Advance users only)


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