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The 5 Best Tools For PHP Developers


PHP is one of the most popular coding languages with nearshore developers. This tech stack has many benefits for IT professionals, including cheaper hosting prices, efficient performance rates, good flexibility, a wide range of databases to choose from, and easy integrations.  As PHP usage continues to grow, with 77.4% of websites having their server-side programming set up with this platform, there’s always room for improvement. 

There are many ways to better your PHP development experience. Not only does this improve the coding work but the enhancements also reflect on the final results. You could create a better website with the right PHP implements. That’s why we’re dedicating a full blog post to this subject. Keep reading to learn about the 5 best tools for PHP developers! 

The 5 Best Tools For PHP Developers

1. Zend Studio.



Zend by Perforce is a PHP integrated development environment for PHP 5.5 and newer. This IDE comes with a wide range of features to help you deploy applications on various servers, such as intelligent code editing, debugging, and profiling features, and a tool for simplified deployment. One of the main advantages of Zend Studio is the many integrations it offers at a minimal effort. For example, Xdebug, Zend Debugger, and Z-Ray in Zend Server are amazing integrated tools for debugging code, while you can also take advantage of Eclipse plugins, Docker, and GitFlow. There are two types of Zend Studio licenses: personal and commercial. Depending on your needs and if you’re part of a remote development team, you’ll have to pay for one of them to use this PHP IDE. 

  • Pricing: The Personal license costs $89.00 and it lasts for a lifetime. There’s also the Commercial license, which costs $189.00 and is perpetual as well. 

2. CodeLobster.



CodeLobster is another PHP integrated development environment, just like Zend Studio. But it’s a great option for those on a budget. This is a free multifunctional cross-platform IDE for PHP, HTML, CSS, and JavaScript development that supports the majority of the PHP frameworks, such as Symfony, Laravel, CodeIgniter, CakePHP, and Magento. One of its strongest advantages is its autocomplete features, which help you localize the names of functions, arguments, tags, and other code elements without memorizing them in advance. It also includes an internal free PHP Debugger for complete code development within the same platform. 

  • Pricing: Free. 

3. Scriptcase



Scriptcase is an application development platform and code generator to help you build PHP web applications. It’s one of the best tools for PHP developers because of its graphical interface and ease of use when it comes to web-oriented programming. Another one of its key benefits it’s how low-code it can be if a PHP developer needs an efficient way of finishing any project more quickly. Scriptcase allows you to connect multiple databases to create your applications, as it’s compatible with the largest application database in the market and facilitates access to most of them, such as Oracle, MS SQLServer, DB2, Sybase, Informix, and Amazon Aurora.

  • Pricing: The Starter Scrptcase license costs $ 449.00 per year. Their second option, the Professional license costs $ 499.00. Finally, their Enterprise license for development teams has a price tag of $ 699.00 billed annually. 

4. Cloud 9 by AWS.



What sets AWS Cloud 9 apart from the other best tools for PHP developers is the fact that it’s a completely cloud-based IDE backed by one of the biggest technological companies in the world. This online IDE supports multiple programming languages, including C, C++, PHP, Ruby, Perl, Python, JavaScript with Node.js, and Go. Thanks to being hosted entirely on the cloud, you can write, run, test, and debug your code with just a browser powered by Cloud 9. The main features of this IDE include a code editor, debugger, and terminal, as well as prepackaged essential tools to aid you when coding with the most popular programming languages. 

  • Pricing: AWS Cloud 9 includes a free tier, with limited functions available. If you need anything outside of the free tier, AWS provides a pricing calculator to determine the estimated costs according to your specific needs. 

5. Xdebug



When it comes to the best tools for PHP developers for debugging code, Xdebug is a clear favorite. Though the DBGp debugging protocol, this tool aids developers with its debugging and profiling capabilities, with results so clean it’ll look like you’ve suddenly improved your coding skills overnight. Xdebug acts as an extension for PHP to provide you with a more efficient experience while step debugging, PHP error reporting, tracing, profiling, and code coverage analysis. It helps you save time otherwise spent in debugging the code after multiple iterations, thanks to its breakpoint add-ons featured on every cycle. 

  • Pricing: Xdebug has a Community tier where you can choose how much you want to pay for the service. It also has two different fully paid plans. The Pro version costs $199 per year and the Business plan for any development team costs $999 per year. 

Ready to join a network of international developers and find more PHP development work?

Being a PHP developer encapsulates so much more than coding work, which is why every PHP developer needs the right tools to thrive at their job. While we’ve listed the 5 best tools for PHP developers, there’s one key element for career success that’s not software or a practical application. This is the community, the network developers forge over the course of their careers that can help them find new jobs and gain more recognition faster. 

At Blue Coding, we offer you the chance to join a network of remote developers from Latin America and worldwide. We help you connect with international employers and find the best PHP development work available. Our developers have gone off to join large-scale projects at internationally recognized companies, and we’re confident you can do the same. Contact us today to learn how to join the Blue Coding family! 

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