What is the best website builder application

Code editors at a glance: The best applications for Windows, Mac and Co.

Thanks to do-it-yourself solutions such as website construction kits, users can now create a create simple website. Ready-to-use design templates and operating components can be selected as desired in these tools and positioned using drag-and-drop, while the underlying source code is generated automatically. But when it comes to development professional websites Programmers with in-depth knowledge of HTML, CSS and JavaScript are still as popular as ever: In contrast to website builder projects, professionally programmed pages are characterized by one high degree of individuality as well as one clean and legibleSource code.

The most important tool of every web developer is without a doubt a code editor that contains the required functions and a high level of functionality User comfort offers - at the same time but not too bloated with unnecessary features. Different HTML code editors are used for the different operating systems such as Windows, macOS or Linux.

  1. What are the characteristics of a good web code editor?
  2. The best code editors for Windows, macOS, Linux and Android at a glance
    1. The best cross-platform web code editors
      1. GNU Emacs (Windows, Linux, macOS)
      2. Brackets (Windows, Linux, macOS)
      3. Atom (Windows, Linux 64-bit, macOS)
      4. The best code editors for Windows
      5. Notepad ++ (Windows)
      6. Araneae (Windows)
    2. The best code editors for Mac computers
      1. Coda (macOS, iOS)
      2. BBEdit (macOS)
    3. DroidEdit - the code editor for Android
  3. The presented code editors in a tabular overview

What are the characteristics of a good web code editor?

Classic code editors form a kind of interim solution compared to simple text editors and complex IDEs (Integrated Development Environments). They stand out from the former with an extended range of functions, the latter include several tools for the Software developmentthat are networked with each other. A code editor is usually also integrated in these complex development environments - but just one of many components.

There are also differences within the group of code editors, which is due in particular to the large number of markup and programming languages. For example, there are editors that are particularly suitable for working with C ++, Java or Python, but also those that are specifically on web development and design are tailored. The basic requirement for such editors is that they at least enable or simplify the writing and editing of the following codes: HTML, CSS and JavaScript. One of the most typical features of web code editors is what is called a WYSIWYG mode (W.Has You S.ee I.s W.Has You Get), which shows developers in advance how the code will later be displayed in the browser.

Other features of good code editors for Mac and Co. are:

  • Possibility of projects in any Character encoding save
  • Syntax highlighting for different languages ​​(in the best case configurable)
  • Flexible "Search and replace“Function that can also process regular expressions
  • Fade in and fade out function for logically related code sections (code folding)
  • Auto-completion of code (words, functions, parameters)
  • Macro editor
  • Easy management of complete code snippets

The best code editors for Windows, macOS, Linux and Android at a glance

Code editors are very simple programs that require little memory and system performance. On which device or which operating system The programs that are used therefore basically depend on the preferences of the user. Of course, not every code editor runs on all operating systems, which is why the selection is limited, for example, if you are only looking for a Linux code editor. As with other software, you can also choose between proprietary software, Open source solutions as Freeware differ, which is why the decision for or against a web code editor in the end often also taking into account the costs is hit.

In order to make it easier for you to find the right code editor for your web project, we present in the following sections the most important representatives for the respective operating systems as well as some cross-platform solutions.

The best cross-platform web code editors

There are a number of editors that can be used across platforms. So the developers offer different ones in this case Installation filesfor the respective systems so that you only have to select the appropriate file to install the program on Windows, macOS or Linux. However, it is possible that the editions differ from system to system, so that certain functions, for example, are only available for Linux users.

GNU Emacs (Windows, Linux, macOS)

In 1984 Richard Stallman developed a revised, open source version of the Emacs editor published eight years earlier under the name GNU Emacs. The meanwhile GNU GPL licensed Code-Editor thus became the first program of the GNU project that was emerging at the time, which played a major role in the development of the open source scene and the Linux operating system. The software is now not only available for GNU / Linux, but also for macOS and Windows. Via the programming interface written in C, which has a built-in Interpreter for the Lisp programming language contains, the software can be expanded to include functions and language support as required. To download and install these extensions, which are referred to as "modes" in GNU Emacs, the free code editor has a own package manager.

Due to its high extensibility, GNU Emacs not only offers access to the standard tools of a code editor such as Autocomplete and Syntax highlighting, but also - if desired - access to features that go far beyond writing and editing text and code. For example, you can add an audio player, a project planner and even a web server to the program. A special feature of the editor veteran is the operation via keyboard shortcuts, which you can learn in a short time. In addition, Emacs largely allows control with the mouse.



highly expandable

sometimes unfamiliar control via keyboard shortcuts


English-language user interface

Brackets (Windows, Linux, macOS)

In 2012, the software manufacturer published Adobe the open source community project Brackets on the GitHub developer platform. The first official version of the MIT-licensed web code editor for HTML, CSS and JavaScript appeared at the end of 2014. The specialty of the Brackets software, which is available for Windows as well as for macOS and Linux, is that it mainly written in HTML, CSS and JavaScript and is therefore clearly designed for use as an HTML code editor. The editor functionality is ensured by Brackets with the help of third-party applications such as jQuery, Less, Mustache and CodeMirror. Since the Source code freely available the editor can not only use for free, but (at least with the appropriate know-how) also adapt as desired.

Brackets offers the most important code editor functions out of the box: Code syntax becomes automatically Highlighted in color - Brackets also provides suggestions for parameters and automatically closes brackets. Using the “Find” tab, you can search through all open code documents for specific terms or code passages and have the relevant material automatically replaced if necessary (“Replace”). The "Live Preview" also gives you a look at how your web project looks at the current processing status. If you want to expand the functionality of the code editor for Mac, Windows and Linux, simply use the integrated extension manager.



Focus on web development

English-language user interface

highly expandable


Atom (Windows, Linux 64-bit, macOS)

The code editor of the GitHub developer expelled. It is based on the framework Electron, which in turn consists of the Chromium web browser and the Node.js JavaScript runtime environment. Thanks to this software set-up, Atom is not only Can be used across platforms, but also highly expandable - with the Atom community between Packages (Features and functions) and Themes (visual adjustments of UI and syntax highlighting). The web code editor offers an integrated package manager for searching for and installing new extensions. In the beginning, only extensions and packages that are not part of the Atom core were open source - but now all of Atom software is free MIT license.

Atom is closely linked to GitHub, which is why the code editor offers, among other things, a Create GitHub directory for your projectwithout having to go to the developer platform. Also on that Version control system Git you can fall back on all changes to the code in view, test them and - if necessary - undo them. The other basic functions of the software include, among others Syntax highlighting, automatic language recognition, Code folding, automatic text and code completion as well as the ability to search for and replace terms, expressions and code sections throughout the project.



Integration of Git and GitHub

English-language user interface

highly expandable (over 8,000 extensions available)


The best code editors for Windows

Web development has always been closely linked to UNIX and Linux. Crucial web tools and software such as the Apache web server are part of the standard repertoire in almost all distributions of this operating system family - in addition, the administrative freedom for many users is a decisive advantage over Windows. Nevertheless, they are also enjoying themselves Microsoft systems a not insignificant user base when it comes to programming and managing a new website. This is shown not least in the fact that there are code editors that exclusively for Windows developed were.

Notepad ++ (Windows)

In 2003 the software developer Don Ho programmed the Microsoft code editor Notepad ++, which in the following years blossomed into one of the most important tools for web development on Windows machines. On SourceForge.net, where the open source editor (GPL license) was initially hosted, Notepad ++ could for example over 28 million downloads before the entire project was moved to the GitHub online platform in 2015. The double plus in the name of the free code editor for Windows goes back to the fact that it written in the C ++ language (Notepad ++ also uses the text editor component of the Scintilla library).

Notepad ++ already offers the elementary features of a good HTML code editor in the factory settings: The syntax of various languages ​​can be highlighted in color, and you can optionally also customize your own Define highlighting features can - the same applies to the grouping of code sections that belong together. In addition, Notepad ++ offers a "search and replace" function as well as a function for recording and playing back Macros and a Autocomplete feature (Words, functions, parameters). If the appropriate browser is installed, the HTML documents created in Notepad ++ can be viewed in advance at any time in Firefox, Chrome, Safari or Internet Explorer.



minimalistic program code

Problems with very large files

Macro editor integrated as standard


Araneae (Windows)

A simple, yet extremely useful code editor for Windows is Araneae. It was created in 2006 by the developer Mark McIntyre released. Microsoft fans can use the application, which is specially designed for working with web documents (HTML, CSS, JavaScript, PHP, XML, XHTML), use completely free of charge for non-commercial purposes. Despite its small size, the editor provides numerous functions that you need to create clean, clear codes: Araneae automatically highlights the syntax of the supported languages ​​and enables them search or that Replace selected terms. However, the code editor does not offer automatic completion of markup codes and parameters.

About so-called Quick clips you can add common elements and parameters (such as tables, colors or boldings) to your code documents in Araneae with just one click or via hotkey, which makes writing code much easier for you. If you want to convince yourself of the functionality of your code, use the integrated Preview functionto preview the current document in the browser of your choice.



minimalistic program code

no autocomplete function

Hotkeys (quick clips) for frequently used code elements

English-language user interface

The best code editors for Mac computers

macOS, the operating system of Apple devices such as the iMac or MacBook is popular with many app and web developers. This is particularly due to the fact that the system is a BSD descendant (B.erkeley S.oftware D.istribution) natively supports various UNIX development tools. The good performance of Apple devices is another reason for developing web applications on a Mac. Added to this is the fact that Apps for iOS can only be programmed from a macOS device.

Coda (macOS, iOS)

The Japanese software company Panic launched Coda, a code editor for Mac computers, in 2007. In addition to the Desktop application, which you can purchase after a one-week free trial period for around 90 euros on the Panic website, there is also one App for iOS, which Panic is offering at a price of 27.99 euros in the App Store. Coda covers the basic functions of a code editor: In addition to syntax highlighting in various languages, project-wide auto-completion and a quick "search and replace" function, the program also offers the option of Fold in or out the code and comment on it. Coda can be expanded at any time using plug-ins, most of which are developed by the community.

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In order to offer users maximum convenience, the features of Coda go far beyond those of a normal HTML code editor: The software has its own File management system integrated, which not only simplifies the opening and editing of local files, but also access to files via (S) FTP, WebDAV or Amazon S3 Server enables. Thanks to the support of Git and Subversion, you can also use Coda to record all changes to your documents at any time. Other extras are a built-in terminal, an HTML validator as well as a MySQL editor. The code editor for Mac also offers a WebKit Preview or AirPreview Preview function.



perfectly tailored to the requirements of web development


integrated terminal

English-language user interface

BBEdit (macOS)

Among the code editors for Mac, BBEdit is certainly a veteran. The American company's proprietary editor solution Bare bones software was introduced in 1992 as a program for the OS X or macOS predecessor Macintosh System Software 6. Since then, the software has been continuously developed, which is why it is still one of the most popular code editors for Mac users after more than two decades. In addition to the paid license edition, which costs around 45 euros, offers Bare Bones software an unlicensed one Demo version with limited functionalitythat you can use free of charge and upgrade at any time. Until 2016, the manufacturer offered the separate code editor TextWrangler (formerly BBEdit Lite) for this purpose, the support of which has since been discontinued.

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BBEdit offers a balanced mix of basic code editor functions and additional features that make the work of web developers a lot easier: So are Syntax highlighting for various languages, Autocomplete, a cross-document "Search and replace“Function and Code folding implemented as well as the File access via (S) FTP, support for Git and Subversion, or an extensive set HTML and CSS markup tools (including support for HTML5). The WebKit Inspector, which is also integrated as standard, can be used for a live preview of the code. Also in terms of things Bug checking knows how to convince BBEdit: You can detect spelling errors directly in the code editor with the macOS correction function, while you correct errors in the code of your HTML pages with the HTML syntax checker.



continuous improvement of the software

English-language user interface

built-in FTP client


DroidEdit - the code editor for Android

There is also a whole range of code editors for the mobile operating system Android, with the one developed by André Restivo standing out in particular: DroidEdit. The editor for writing code on smartphones, tablets and co. Offers Syntax highlighting for almost 200 different programming and markup languages: the color coding can be adapted as desired. Also known from desktop applications "Search and replace“Function can be found in DroidEdit. Thanks to the Emmet extension, simple expressions are easily converted into full-fledged HTML code - and an additional one supports you virtual keyboard in the Entry of specific code symbols and special characters.

DroidEdit can be downloaded from the Google Play Store and there are two different versions of the code editor for Android: DroidEdit Free is completely free but has ads for it. DroidEdit Pro is chargeable (just over 2 euros), but supports the version management system, among other things Git. In addition, after purchasing the app, you have (S) FTP support and interfaces to the online storage services Dropbox, Google Drive and box to disposal.



excellent language support

Problems with larger files

Virtual keyboard with special characters and symbols

no autocomplete

The presented code editors in a tabular overview



Platform (s)






free of charge

Hotkeys (Quick Clips)



Windows, Linux (64-bit), macOS

free of charge

direct connection to GitHub




~ 45 euros

HTML syntax checker, built-in FTP client



Windows, Linux, macOS

free of charge

written in JavaScript, HTML and CSS



macOS, iOS

~ 90 euros (iOS app: 27.99 euros)

integrated terminal




~ 2 euros

virtual keyboard with special characters / symbols

GNU Emacs


Windows, Linux, macOS

free of charge

first program of the GNU software project

Notepad ++



free of charge

Macro editor integrated as standard

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