What Ruby IDE do you prefer?


I've been using Eclipse with RDT (not RadRails) a lot lately, and I'm quite happy with it, but I'm wondering if you guys know any decent alternatives. I know NetBeans also supports Ruby these days, but I'm not sure what it has to offer over Eclipse.

Please, list any features you think are brilliant or useful when suggesting an IDE, makes it easier to compare.

Also, I said Ruby, not Rails. While Rails support is a plus, I prefer things to be none Rails-centric. It should also be available on Linux and optionally Solaris.

This question is tagged with ruby ide editor

~ Asked on 2008-08-19 21:26:22

25 Answers


Have you tried Aptana? It's based on Eclipse and they have a sweet Rails plugin.

~ Answered on 2008-08-19 21:35:46


RubyMine from JetBrains. (Also available as a plugin to IntelliJ IDEA)

~ Answered on 2009-07-25 14:10:26


Redcar has been getting some attention lately, as well. Still early in its life, but it shows promise.

~ Answered on 2009-04-17 01:24:37


On Mac OS X, TextMate is a godsend.

~ Answered on 2008-08-19 21:44:22


The latest Netbeans IDE (6.1) has a pretty solid Ruby support.

You can check it out here.

~ Answered on 2008-08-19 21:42:54


Once I found Geany (Ubuntu), I switched from TextMate (OSX) and never looked back. Geany is a lean, clean, speedy IDE that can be used either as a text editor or a light-weight IDE. It supports not only text editing features (syntax highlighting, code folding, auto-completion, auto-closing, symbol lists, code navigation, directory tree, multi-tabbed open files etc.) but also normal IDE features such as simple project management, compile-build-run within the main window. Unlike TextMate, it has a Terminal screen within its own window; you do not have to go back and force between your editor window and terminal window. Unlike TextMate, it supports international languages. Unlike TextMate, it supports multi-platforms, Unlike TextMate, it is open-source and free. Geany is now my favorite C/Ruby/XML development tool.

~ Answered on 2010-09-03 12:00:50


RubyMine is so awesome. Everything just works. I could go on and on. Code completion is fast, smooth, and accurate. Formatting is instantaneous. Project navigation is easy and without struggle. You can pop open any file with a few keystrokes. You don't even need to keep the project tree open, but it's there if you want. You can configure just about any aspect of it to behave exactly how you want.

NetBeans, Eclipse, and RubyMine all have more or less the same set of features. However, RubyMine is just so much more cleanly designed and easy to use. There's nothing awkward or clunky about it. There are all these nice little design touches that show how JetBrains really put thought into it instead of just amassing a big pile of features.

Incidentally RubyMine can do a lot of the things that Vim can do like select and edit a column of text or split the view into several editing panels with different files in them.

~ Answered on 2010-02-14 04:46:10


NetBeans has some really solid Ruby support.

~ Answered on 2008-08-19 22:32:11


I have used Komodo and it's pretty good. I use TextMate now.

~ Answered on 2008-08-19 21:32:38


In last 3 months, I have tried RadRails, Netbeans and RubyMine and finally settled on RubyMine not so much for features but for responsiveness and stability reasons.

In terms of features, RubyMine has slightly better code completion, debugging and code navigation, but only ruby beginners(like myself) need them most. Relying on code completion and code navigation is anti-ruby/rails, as ruby/rails names are supposed to be natural and each line of code needs to be in its convention determined location.

~ Answered on 2010-10-28 07:27:28


For very simple Linux support if you like TextMate, try just gedit loaded with the right plugins. Easy to set up and really customizable, I use it for just about everything. There's also a lot of talk about emacs plugins if you're already using that normally.

Gedit: How to set up like TextMate

~ Answered on 2008-08-27 14:17:12


While TextMate is not an IDE in the classical sense, try the following in terminal to be 'wowed'

cd 'your-shiny-ruby-project'
mate .

It'll spawn up TextMate and the project drawer will list the contents of your project. Pretty awesome if you ask me.

~ Answered on 2011-04-26 13:11:54


Most IDEs present the project structure in a top down manner. This is great way to explore at a high level when joining an existing project. However, after working on the same project for more than a year, I realized that this approach can become counter-productive.

After Oracle declared the end of Ruby in NetBeans, I switched to Vim. By using a command line and an editor as the only tools, I was forced to mentally switch to a bottom-up perspective. To my amazement, I discovered that this made me more focused and productive. As a bonus, I got first class HAML and SASS syntax support.

I recommend Vim + Rails plugin for anyone that will work on a single project for an extended period of time.

~ Answered on 2011-03-21 14:12:03


NetBeans is good because you can use it on Windows and Mac OS X.

~ Answered on 2008-08-22 19:28:51


Aptana more or less is RadRails, or it's based on it. I've used it, and it's really good, but it does have some problems. For instance, it breaks the basic search dialog on my system (giving a raw java exception to the end user), and it clutters the interface with add like notices and upgrade bars and news feeds and...

But all in all it's pretty good, especially its editors (ERB, HTML/XML, ...) are top notch.

~ Answered on 2008-08-19 21:41:37


emacs with ruby-mode, rdebug and a ruby interactive inferior shell.

~ Answered on 2011-08-22 23:30:15


I started out using gEdit (ubuntu user), but even with all the plugins and modifications (class/file browser, terminal, darkmate scheme, etc, etc) it still always seemed to come up short. I've also tried like hell to get Aptana RadRails and Studio to work, but none of them ever really seemed to sync up with my workflow. I've even tried using Eclipse, but again, it just didn't work for me.

RubyMine also seemed like it would be great, but I found it to be way too buggy, even after the upgrade to 3.0.

So far, my favorite Ruby editor is Komodo Edit. It's got syntax highlighting and can detect errors and recognize your code based on user-specified ruby versions. Syntax highlighting schema are easily customizable and easy on the eyes. There are some very nice plugins for git, it can have split-screen editors (love that feature), and a great file-browser. I really wish Komodo had built-in terminal (multiple terminal) support, but everything else about it I've really come to love, and haven't found anything better yet.

~ Answered on 2010-12-20 02:49:20


E Text Editor is great (TextMate compatible sort-of-clone for Windows).

~ Answered on 2009-04-17 00:54:47


Textmate on osx

~ Answered on 2008-08-26 16:36:34


I prefer TextMate on OS X. But Netbeans (multi-platform) is coming along quite nicely. Plus it comes with its IDE fully functional debugger.

~ Answered on 2008-08-22 11:54:40


Ruby in Steel: http://www.sapphiresteel.com/Products/Ruby-In-Steel/Ruby-In-Steel-Developer-Overview

A Visual Studio based Ruby IDE. Fast Debugger. Intellisense.

~ Answered on 2010-09-03 15:23:45


~ Answered on 2011-03-22 22:01:18


I started out with RadRails then moved to Aptana when they took it over, wasn't too bad. Got a macbook and have been using Textmate, never going back.

~ Answered on 2008-08-26 16:31:18


I'd recommend NetBeans 6.1 too. Very nice IDE and makes working with Ruby a pleasure.

~ Answered on 2008-08-22 11:59:39


+1 for TextMate on Mac OS X.

See also answers to this question. I recommend trying NetBeans if you're on Windows.

~ Answered on 2008-08-19 22:11:58

Most Viewed Questions: