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PHP is the fastest and most widely used server-side scripting language for building websites and web apps. There are many good reasons why several developers prefer PHP to other server-side languages like Python and Ruby. PHP includes detailed documentation, numerous ready-to-use scripts, a huge community, and well-supported frameworks. To make PHP work easier, experts have developed some PHP development tools that increase programming efficiency. PHP tools are meant to account for a perfect IDE (Integrated Development Environment) where PHP developers can efficiently build engaging, innovative and feature-rich PHP projects.
Today’s market is flooded with many PHP tools, and choosing the best one among them is a challenging task. Here are the top 10 best PHP development tools that captured the attention of web development communities.
- Code completion
- Code re-arranger
- Zero Configuration Debugging
- Native ZenCoding support
- Supports extension with plenty of useful plugins like VimEditor
- Platforms supported: Microsoft Windows, Linux, and Mac OS X
- Visit: PHPStorm
2. Zend Studio
Most web developers opt for Zend Studio because of its optimal speed. Writing and debugging code in Zend Studio doesn’t demand any extra effort and time from developers. While supporting PHP 7, it debugs PHP scripts by integrating X-ray, Xdebug, and Zend Debugger. This comprehensive PHP IDE comes with an exciting set of features and powered to deploy applications on various servers including servers in the cloud. Developers can extend Zend Studio via Eclipse plugins.
Zend Studio Features:
- Indexing & searching PHP Code
- Faster Performance in the validation
- Zend Framework & Zend_Tool Integration
- Docker Support
- Support for Eclipse Plugin
Zend Studio Specialties:
- Platforms supported: Microsoft Windows, Linux, and MacOS
- Visit: Zend Studio
3. NuSphere PhpED
- Accelerate PHP apps with PhpExpress
- Support for composite file extensions
- Parallel Debugging
- Full integration with phpUnit
- Refactoring of PHP code
- Platforms supported: Windows, Web, Mac, Linux, iPad
- Visit: PhpED
NetBeans, the most widely used PHP IDE for PHP application development. This tool comes with all the rich features, which supports multiple languages. NetBeans was initially used for Java development, but the current version of this tool is lightweight, faster as well as supportive for PHP development services. It includes the extension to support other programming languages like C, C++, and HTML5. It supports developing large-scale web apps and supports various languages like Japanese, Russian, English, Brazilian Portuguese, and simplified Chinese. This open source PHP development tool can work with almost all popular PHP frameworks, including Zend, Symfony 2, CakePHP, FuelPHP, Smarty and WordPress CMS. NetBeans PHP IDE offers various features specific to developing web applications with the recent versions of PHP.
- Code Formatting & folding
- Smart code completion
- Getter Setter generation
- Try/catch code completion
- Syntax Highlighter
- Platforms supported: Windows, MacOS, Linux, and Solaris
- Visit: NetBeans
5. Cloud 9
- Real-time language Analysis
- Tabbed file Management
- Integrated Debugger
- Built-in image editor
- Code reformatting
- Platforms supported: Windows, Mac OS, Linux, and Solaris
- Visit: Cloud9
6. Aptana Studio
Aptana Studio, an open source PHP development tool used in integration with various server-side and client-side web technologies. PHP, Python, CSS3, Ruby on Rails, Ruby and HTML5 are some of these technologies. It supports the debuggers and command line interface to make it easier for PHP app development. It allows PHP programmers to build as well as test web applications in one environment. It comes with SFTP, FTP, and IDE customization. This powerful web development engine leverages the flexibilities of Eclipse and comprises details about the range of support for each element in the leading web browsers. Aptana Studio is a high-performance PHP IDE and includes a wide range of attractive features to increase your productivity.
Aptana Studio features:
- Set breakpoints, control execution, inspect variables
- Supports latest HTML5 specifications
- Collaboration with peers via merge, pull & push actions
- IDE Customization
- Git Integration and Built-in terminal
- Platforms supported: Windows, Linux, Mac OS X and Plugin for Eclipse
- Visit: Aptana Studio
- Syntax highlighting
- SQL manager
- Code validator
- Autocompleting of keywords, DOM elements & their properties
- Function Parameters Display
- Platforms supported: Windows, Fedora, Linux, Ubuntu, Debian, Mac OS, Mint
- Visit: CodeLobster
8. Sublime Text
Sublime Text is one of the leading text editors out there for PHP developers. However, it isn’t a quite IDE, with the installation of certain plugins/package; you can make it a suitable editor for developing PHP applications. This cross-platform source code editor natively supports several programming as well as markup languages. With its feature-rich functionalities and extraordinary designs, it makes the developer community consider the text editor as the best IDE for PHP development. Being leading customizable text editor with custom UI toolkit, it enables you to climb across the symbols, words or lines using appropriate key shortcuts. Moreover, you can make changes to any lines of your code.
Sublime Text Features
- Split editing
- Instant Project Switch
- Better command palette
- Distraction free mode
- Plugin API
Sublime Text Specialties:
- Languages supported: All popular languages
- Platforms supported: Windows, Mac OS and Linux
- Visit: Sublime Text
PHPDebugbar is a PHP debugger that can run with any project and display data from a broad range of web apps. This PHP development tool includes two parts, namely: mainDebugBar object & data collectors and the render. A StandardDebugBar includes a pre-configured built-in set of collectors.
- Monitor network traffic
- Handles AJAX requests
- Log & debug directly to Debugbar
- Fast & easy to use interface
- Preview config& application config
- Languages supported: PHP, Ruby, .Net and Java
- PHP versions supported: PHP 5.5 & above
- Visit: PHPDebugbar
When you digitally search about the best PHP development tools, most of your search results will have the Eclipse in their list. Being a completely development tool, it ranks in the list of top PHP tools. With the liberty to select from a broad range of plugin, it makes it easier to develop as well as simplify the complex PHP code. It also aids you to customize and extend the IDE to address the needs of the project. This PHP IDE can support both GUI and non-GUI applications. This cross-platform PHP editor is ideal for large-scale PHP projects.
- Syntax highlighting
- Content assist
- Code templates
- Formatting of code
- Code navigation
- Platforms supported: Windows, Mac OS, Linux and Solaris
- Visit: Eclipse
Apart from the ones above, here are some PHP tools that are steadily but surely making their way to the top PHP Development tools in 2022:
11. Code Lobster
Code Lobster IDE empowers you to complete everything from writing scripts to changing design items to removing bugs in a single platform. That way this PHP tool ensures the building and launching websites in less time. This PHP IDE tool combines activities like code completing and error detection into a single app. It enhances the programming workflow and aids your team to focus on what matters most. It includes innovative features like advanced autocomplete, dynamic help, PHP debugger, Help on API, and FTP/SFTP client.
12. Selenium Test
Another new addition to our list of Top 10 PHP development Tools is Selenium, which enables PHP developers to produce automated Web app UI tests in any scripting language. When this is combined with PHPUnit, we can run an automated test with any web browser on your choice. All OS like Windows, Linux, Mac, etc support the selenium PHP tool.
Scriptcase is one of the powerful PHP tools that are widely used to generate web apps in PHP. Create Menus, Charts, Forms, and Reports automatically with a few clicks. This PHP Form Builder can build large web systems just within a few hours thereby saves your time and effort. It supports multiple regional languages including Italian, French, Spanish, and English. This PHP tool is geared for medium and large-scale companies better for developing applications in CodeIgniter and Laravel.
Each tool listed here is fully packed with outstanding features and capabilities that allow creating PHP websites quickly & easily. These PHP development tools aren’t the only ones available in the market. You can find much more paid and free PHP tools! However, the tools listed on this blog are the ‘best PHP development tools’ that meets every requirements of your project. Keep in mind that new PHP IDEs are popping out every day; it is always worthier to keep an eye out on the latest trends in PHP.