I went to the drawing board, used the plugin for good 2-3 days and now I review this worthy IDE for PHP development. In short, CodeLobster is a unique PHP IDE that is targeted for productivity and taking control of your coding challenges or projects as a whole.
As everything out there, nothing is perfect and we will surely go through both the side of the CodeLobster coin has to offer.
The first thing that I want to discuss is the cost associated with the IDE. Currently, it is available in three versions. If you want to try out the IDE, they offer the user a free version in exchange of your email address. Yes, you need to register your name and email address and they will send you a key for using the free version. Even though, offering the free version is structured but is quite unnecessary for the free version.
The lite version, on the other hand, is offered at only $39.95 and comes with advanced features such as SQL manager, code snippets, code formatting, SASS and LESS support, etc.
And, if you ready to shell out more money you can get hold of the Professional version at $119.95 with a 70% discount. The main reason of the price hike is the additional plugins that are incorporated into the professional bundle. You can choose any of the professional plugins and bring down the price to $79.90(if you choose one professional plugin.)
You can view the comparison chart here.
Installation is simple and intuitive, but there is one step that you have to cover to get started. The registrar will send you to free key on your email address. The free copy needs to be copy-pasted into the startup window and woosh the IDE opens up for the first time.
Well, the CodeLobster IDE comes with everything that you could want from a mature IDE and it does hold a lot of promise for any developer out there. The idea of the advanced plugin is to make additional functionality accessible. All you have to activate the said plugin and you are ready to go with any PHP framework. It also offers support for WordPress through WordPress advanced plugin.
I am normally a WordPerss guy. With a wizard helping the setup of WordPress, starting a WordPress project was easy. All you need is a background server that takes care of the database for the WordPress website.
With project creation done, you will find the interface quite clean. It also offers a full-screen mode so that coding sessions goes without any distractions. I love this as distractions are easy to come by and makes you not concentrate on the problem at hand.
Other advanced features are available depending on which version of the CodeLobster you are using. The free version does not offer control system and I would request the CodeLobster team to avail this feature in the free version.
The Lite version is feature rich and you can get along well with the SQL manager, Code validator, code snippets, split window, compare, Node.js support and more.
Handling CSS is nice as it displays the browser compatibility on the run.
It also offers debugging, GOTO and other important features.
The User Interface of the CodeLobster IDE is slightly off the track. It doesn’t feel modern, but it do offer tons of skins to choose from. You can easily choose the sublime skin if you used sublime text in the past or any other you of liking.
With just 2 days with the IDE, I must say that it is quite impressive and worth your money in every sense. The free version will get you started easily and if you are satisfied with what you have experienced, you can buy the lite or the professional one without any issues.
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