Best Chromebook IDE Online

best online IDE for chromebookAn online Chromebook IDE may be the best way for developers to code on a Chromebook. If you’re looking to make use of a Chromebook for developing, there are a few tools you might want to look into to make the job successful. It is important to find an online IDE that works well with Chromebooks.

Programming on a Chromebook

This article provides some insight into the best online IDEs for Chromebook and how to use Chromebooks as a developer’s tool.More and more offline apps are being made available for Chrome OS (like the Caret text editor) but if you are really serious about programming on a Chromebook, you’re going to want to install Linux. Chromebooks were practically made for it— it’s way easier than installing Linux on a Windows machine.


Online IDE on Chromebook

There are many different online IDEs such CodeEnvy, IDEOne, Codepad, Browxy, Jdoodle, JavaLaunch, Compilr, Codebox and ShiftEdit. Each of these online resources come with their own limitations in terms of how developers can use the. Commonly, there is no multiple file support, no user input support, no support for applets or no step debugging. That being said, these cloud based IDE services work well with Chromebook users who are fairly limited in their coding options. It may actually be the best of the worst.

Best Online Cloud IDE

There are many cloud based IDEs available for programmers. Below are some of the best online IDEs for Chromebook.  Some cloud-based IDEs offer Chrome extensions to make life a bit easier. These IDEs with Chrome extensions are reviewed first.


SourceLair Chromebook IDE

sourceLair: Very simple to use, full-featured Linux terminal, Git and Mercurical integration, Django integration, syntax highlighting, and much more. sourceLair is an online IDE for developing and testing your code reliably in the cloud. Languages supported: Python, Javascript, HTML, CSS, C, C++, Fortran, and more.

ShiftEdit Chromebook IDE

ShiftEdit: Offers create/edit/publish Ruby, PHP, HTML, CSS and JavaScript with full syntax highlighting, access/publish files through FTP/SFTP/Dropbox, real-time syntax debugging, revision history, and more. ShiftEdit is an online IDE for developing PHP, Ruby, HTML, CSS and JavaScript using (S)FTP, Dropbox or Google Drive.

Cloud9 Chromebook IDE

Cloud9 This online has a great interface. Cloud9 is an online platform for development that makes developing applications more convenient than ever Cloud9 combines a powerful online code editor with a full Ubuntu workspace in the cloud. It supports more than 40 languages, with class A support for PHP, Ruby, Python, JavaScript, Go, and more.


CodeEnvy Chromebook IDE

CodeEnvy: Launch an infinite number of processes, one-click automation, customizable. Codenvy is a cloud IDE and developer workspace server that allows anyone to contribute to a project without installing software. Get sample projects and demos from their site. Languages supported: Ruby, Python, Go, Javascript, Django, and much more.




Other Online IDEs

If you’re willing to work in the cloud, there are plenty of on-line IDEs that work well with a Chromebook. Each of these offers a full-blown IDE that will allow you to develop in nearly any language you need. Some of them are free and some require a subscription. Below are a few of the better cloud based IDEs that work reasonably well on a Chromebook.

  • Koding: Runs on Amazon, supports Docker and runs on a full Ubuntu 14.04 environment. Supported languages: Go, Python, Node, Ruby, PHP, HTML5, and more. Koding lets your organization create and share fully automated dev environments on any infrastructure for modern distributed applications, micro-services and containers.
  • Codeanywhere: Offers code sharing, terminal access, real-time collaboration, code completion, linting, multiple cursors, Zen coding support, code beautify, all device and browser support. Languages supported: Over 72 languages including JS, PHP, HTML, PHP, Python, Ruby, Go. With the amazing editor in Codeanywhere, you will forget you ever used any other code editor.


Using Linux on a Chromebook to Code

This is probably the best option if you want to use Chromebook hardware. More and more offline apps are being made available for Chrome OS (like the Caret text editor) but if you are really serious about programming on a Chromebook, you’re going to want to install Linux. Chromebooks were practically made for it— it’s way easier than installing Linux on a Windows machine.

There are extensive guides that detail exactly how to install Linux on your Chromebook, but here’s the one I used: Crouton Installation Guide: Updated for Broadwell Chromebooks

Installing Linux eliminates almost every reason you wouldn’t get a Chromebook. The main things you won’t have access to are Adobe apps and video games, both because they aren’t on Linux and because Chromebooks aren’t powerful enough to run them.


SSH into a remote machine

One other alternative exists for programming on a Chromebook. SSHing into a remote machine provides access to command-line only tools, including editors such as Vim and Emacs. This might be the best options for users who are looking for a powerful, well known IDE.

Installing the Secure Shell extension

  1. Open Chrome on your Chromebook.
  2. Point it to the Secure Shell extension page.
  3. Click Add To Chrome.
  4. When prompted, click Add App and allow the extension to install.

You should see the Secure Shell icon in your list of apps. Click the icon to open the extension. Once it’s open, the extension is simple to use. All you have to do enter the username, hostname, port (all three are required), and then click the Connect button or hit Enter (Figure A).


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