Robert Johns | 21 Dec, 2023
Fact checked by Jim Markus

What's The Best C++ IDE? Our Top C++ IDEs & Editors In 2024

In this article, I share my picks for the best C++ IDE in 2024.

In the ever-evolving field of C++ development, it’s fair to say that a good C++ IDE can greatly impact your coding experience.

Whether you're experienced in C++ development, or a total beginner, a C++ IDE can boost your productivity, streamline your workflow, and make your coding more enjoyable.

What’s not to like?!

But where do you start? Well, don’t worry, that’s why I’ve written this article!

Whether you want to prioritize a seamless debugging experience, advanced code completion, or extensive plugin support, there's a C++ IDE to meet your needs.

Let’s dive in!

What Are IDEs & Code Editors?

Whether you’re in college and taking your first C++ course or a lead engineer at a major tech company, you need an IDE or a code editor to efficiently edit, read, and debug code, whether you're on Linux, Windows, or Mac.

But what is an IDE?

Great question! An integrated development environment (IDE) is a software application that helps programmers to develop software efficiently and with more convenience. It's where you build your C++ projects!

It increases developer productivity by combining common developer tools such as software editing, building, testing, debugging, and packaging in one easy-to-use graphical user interface (GUI).

Other popular features include code refactoring, code search, code autocomplete, git integration, and continuous integration/continuous deployment (CI/CD).

Regardless of your preferred programming language or type of software development, an IDE will be one of your go-to tools.  

Moving on to the IDE's cousin, the code editor.

Sometimes mistaken for IDEs, the main difference is that IDEs provide more powerful tools to simplify the coding process.

That said, popular code editors like Visual Studio Code have become so fully featured that it's hard to differentiate between the two!

So, to keep things simple, we'll be including both types of coding environments in this article. Great, now let's get started and look at the most popular IDEs for C++.

The 10 Best C++ IDEs & Code Editors in 2024

1. Microsoft Visual Studio

Visual StudioTaking the #1 spot on my list of top C++ IDEs has to be Microsoft's Visual Studio, a powerhouse in the world of C++ development with an intuitive interface. Plus, with support for Linux and macOS, this is not only a favorite among Windows users in 2024.

For me, Visual Studio also sets itself apart with exceptional debugging capabilities. And not only is the debugger robust, but it also offers local and remote debugging. It's also really intuitive, which makes the process of identifying and fixing bugs less of a headache.

The IntelliSense code completion is a feature that stands out for me when coding in C++. This isn't just about saving keystrokes, auto code completion, and bracket matching; it is like the IDE understands your code, offers relevant suggestions, and makes your coding experience smoother and faster.

And that's not to mention the fact that Visual Studio has seamless integration support for GitHub Copilot if you want to add an AI coding assistant to the mix!

Visual Studio is known for its integration with the Windows API and various Microsoft technologies, making it an ideal choice for developers working in a Microsoft-centric environment.

As you'd expect, this IDE supports a vast array of C++ standards, libraries, and frameworks, catering to legacy applications and modern, cutting-edge projects. So whether you're building a simple console application or a high-performance game using Unreal Engine, Visual Studio is up to the job.

But what truly makes Visual Studio shine is its comprehensive suite of tools that cater to the full software development lifecycle. From code editing to version control, from project management to continuous integration, it's all there, integrated into a single, cohesive environment.

Advantages:

  • Advanced debugging and diagnostic tools tailored for C++.
  • IntelliSense for efficient code completion and navigation.
  • Strong support for Windows-specific development and various C++ standards.

Disadvantages:

  • Can be resource-intensive, requiring a powerful machine for optimal performance.
  • The complexity of features might be overwhelming for beginners.
  • While there is a free Community version, some advanced features are reserved for the paid Professional and Enterprise editions.

Features:

  • Advanced Debugging Tools: Offers robust local and remote debugging capabilities, crucial for complex C++ projects.
  • IntelliSense Code Completion: Enhances coding efficiency with smart code completion, suggestions, and navigation.
  • Windows API and Microsoft Technology Integration: Ideal for developers working with Windows-specific technologies and applications.
  • Support for Various C++ Standards and Libraries: Accommodates a wide range of C++ development needs, from legacy to modern applications.
  • Comprehensive Development Lifecycle Tools: Integrates code editing, version control, project management, and continuous integration.
  • Editions for Different Needs: Offers a free Community version, with more advanced features in Professional and Enterprise editions.

2. CLion from JetBrains

CLionClaiming the second spot on my list is CLion, a cross-platform C++ IDE developed by JetBrains. If you've read my web development IDE or Python IDE articles on hackr.io, you'll probably notice that JetBrains features often!

To my mind, they've become one of the best IDE providers in the development space, even giving fan favorites like VSCode a run for their money.

Anyway, back to the task at hand! CLion is another solid IDE from JetBrains that's great for enhancing developer productivity, along with a range of features tailored specifically for C++ developers.

For me, one of CLion's standout features is its smart code analysis. This goes beyond simple syntax checking; it delves into your code's structure, ensuring both accuracy and efficiency. The IDE effectively catches errors and suggests relevant fixes even before you run your code, a boon for maintaining code quality.

But it's not just about preventing mistakes. CLion's intelligent code completion, navigation, and refactoring tools make the development process not only smoother but also faster. The IDE understands your project's context and structure, helping you to navigate complex codebases with ease.

And, being a JetBrains product, CLion also benefits from direct integration with the JetBrains AI coding assistant that has only just been released in December 2024.

In my opinion, cross-platform development is where CLion truly excels. Whether you're working on Windows, Linux, or macOS, the experience is seamless. This is especially valuable for teams working in diverse environments or for projects targeting multiple platforms.

The integration of tools like CMake, a popular build system, also adds to its appeal. CLion handles CMake scripts natively, streamlining the build process and making it more efficient.

Additionally, its support for other build systems and version control systems like Git ensures flexibility and control in your development process.

For debugging, CLion also provides a fully-featured, integrated debugger that supports both local and remote debugging. This is crucial for C++ development, where debugging can often be a complex task.

In summary, CLion stands out as a sophisticated, feature-rich IDE designed with the needs of modern C++ developers in mind. Its focus on productivity, cross-platform compatibility, and comprehensive tooling make it a top choice for professional C++ development.

Advantages:

  • Advanced code analysis and refactoring tools tailored for C++.
  • Seamless cross-platform support, making it ideal for diverse development teams.
  • Native handling of CMake and other build systems, enhancing build processes.

Disadvantages:

  • Being a paid product, it might not be the first choice for individual developers or small teams on a budget.
  • The abundance of features and settings can be overwhelming for newcomers.
  • Some users might find its performance slightly sluggish compared to lighter IDEs or editors.

Features:

  • Smart Code Analysis: Provides in-depth code analysis for error detection and efficient coding practices.
  • Intelligent Code Completion and Refactoring: Facilitates easier navigation and modification of complex codebases.
  • Cross-Platform Development Support: Seamlessly works across Windows, Linux, and macOS, beneficial for diverse teams.
  • Native CMake Integration: Streamlines build processes with native support for CMake and other build systems.
  • Comprehensive Debugging Tools: Includes a fully-featured debugger for both local and remote debugging scenarios.
  • Paid Product: Not free, which might be a consideration for individuals or smaller teams.
  • Feature-Rich Interface: Offers numerous features and settings, which can be overwhelming for beginners.

3. Eclipse CDT

Eclipse CDTSecuring the third position in my list is Eclipse CDT (C/C++ Development Tooling), a robust and versatile open-source IDE that's primarily focused on C and C++ development.

Eclipse CDT stands out for me for its open-source nature and flexibility, making it a popular choice in the C++ community.

Another key aspect of Eclipse CDT is its highly customizable environment. This means you can tailor the IDE to your specific needs thanks to its plugin-based architecture.

So whether you need specific tools for code analysis, version control, or even different build systems, Eclipse's extensive plugin repository likely has what you're looking for.

For C++ development, Eclipse CDT offers a comprehensive set of features. This includes a powerful code editor with syntax highlighting, code completion, and refactoring tools. These features are not great for writing better, cleaner, and more efficient C++ code.

Another major plus point for Eclipse CDT is its cross-platform compatibility. Yep, it runs on Windows, Linux, and macOS, which means we developers are not restricted by our operating system choices. I love this, as it makes it an ideal IDE for teams working in a heterogeneous computing environment.

Eclipse CDT also excels in its debugging capabilities. The integrated debugger supports both local and remote debugging, which is essential for complex C++ applications. Additionally, the ability to integrate with various build systems and version control tools like Git adds to its versatility.

In summary, Eclipse CDT is a highly capable, customizable, and free IDE that caters well to the diverse and complex needs of C++ developers, particularly those who value an open-source and adaptable development environment.

Advantages:

  • Open-source and free to use, making it accessible for everyone.
  • Highly customizable with a wide range of plugins for additional functionality.
  • Strong code editing, debugging, and project management features specifically designed for C++.

Disadvantages:

  • Can be overwhelming for beginners due to its complex interface and multitude of features.
  • Some users may find the IDE to be somewhat resource-intensive, particularly when many plugins are installed.
  • The initial setup and configuration, especially with plugins, can be time-consuming.

Features:

  • Plugin-Based Architecture: Allows for extensive customization and addition of new functionalities.
  • Cross-Platform Support: Works seamlessly on Windows, Linux, and mac OS.
  • Powerful Code Editor and Tools: Offers syntax highlighting, code completion, and efficient refactoring.
  • Integrated Debugger: Supports comprehensive debugging capabilities for C++ development.
  • Build System and Version Control Integration: Compatible with various build systems and tools like Git.

4. Code::Blocks

Code::BlocksComing in at number four on my list is Code::Blocks, a free and open-source C++ IDE that's great if you want a lightweight IDE with lots of customizability. Simply put, this C++ IDE is great for anyone who prefers a straightforward and efficient development environment.

One of the most significant advantages of Code::Blocks is its lightweight design. It's quick to install and runs smoothly, even on less powerful machines. This makes it an excellent choice for students, hobbyists, or developers who prefer a more nimble development tool.

Despite its simplicity, Code::Blocks doesn't skimp on features. It provides all the essentials needed for effective C++ development. This includes a capable code editor with syntax highlighting and code folding, project management tools, and an integrated debugger.

Customizability is another strong suit of Code::Blocks, as you can enhance your development experience with various plugins. Whether it's additional language support, enhanced editing capabilities, or other tools, the extensibility of Code::Blocks ensures it can adapt to a wide range of development needs.

Cross-platform compatibility is also a key feature, with support for Windows, Linux, and macOS. This makes it an ideal choice for teams or projects that span multiple operating systems.

However, its focus on being lightweight means that it might not offer the same level of advanced features or integrations as some of the more heavyweight IDEs I've already covered. This is a trade-off that some developers will find appealing, while others might prefer a more feature-rich environment.

Advantages:

  • Lightweight and fast, ideal for less powerful computers or for developers who prefer speed.
  • Highly customizable with a range of plugins to enhance functionality.
  • Straightforward and easy to use, suitable for beginners and experienced developers alike.

Disadvantages:

  • Lacks some of the advanced features and integrations found in more comprehensive IDEs.
  • The user interface might feel somewhat dated compared to more modern development tools.
  • Reliance on plugins for extended functionality might be a downside for those preferring an all-in-one solution.

Features:

  • Lightweight Design: Fast and efficient, putting less strain on system resources.
  • Customizable Plugin System: Allows for the addition of new features and tools.
  • Cross-Platform Support: Compatible with Windows, Linux, and macOS.
  • Integrated Debugger and Compiler Support: Facilitates effective code testing and building.
  • User-Friendly Interface: Straightforward and easy to navigate, even for beginners.

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5. QT Creator

QT CreatorPositioned at number five on my list is Qt Creator, an IDE specifically designed for C++ developers focusing on creating graphical user interfaces (GUIs) and applications using the Qt framework.

I guess the main reason I added it to my list is its seamless integration with the Qt library, making it the ideal choice for developers working on sophisticated GUI applications in C++.

Another standout feature of Qt Creator is its design tools. This C++ IDE offers an intuitive and powerful drag-and-drop interface for designing user interfaces. This level of integration between UI design and code development can streamline your workflow, making it easier to transform your visual designs into functional code.

Qt Creator also provides comprehensive support for C++ with all the essential features you'd expect, like code completion, syntax highlighting, and a powerful integrated debugger.

Another plus point for Qt Creator is its cross-platform capability. This means developers can build applications for multiple operating systems, including Windows, Linux, and macOS, directly from the IDE. This is particularly valuable for projects aimed at a broad user base.

In addition to its robust C++ capabilities, Qt Creator also supports other languages, such as QML, a language specifically designed for developing fluid UIs with Qt. This makes it a versatile tool for projects that require both high-performance back-end logic (in C++) and a dynamic front-end.

Advantages:

  • Tailored for GUI development with the Qt framework, offering excellent tools for UI design.
  • Comprehensive C++ support with code completion, debugging, and other essential features.
  • Cross-platform development capabilities for creating applications on multiple OSes.

Disadvantages:

  • Primarily focused on Qt development, which might not be suitable for projects outside this framework.
  • The learning curve for mastering Qt Creator and the Qt framework can be steep for beginners.
  • While powerful, it might be more resource-intensive compared to lighter IDEs.

Features:

  • Integrated UI Design Tools: Drag-and-drop interface for easy and efficient UI creation.
  • Strong C++ and QML Support: Facilitates development with essential coding features.
  • Cross-Platform Compatibility: Builds applications for Windows, Linux, and macOS.
  • Integrated Debugger: Aids in efficient debugging of both C++ and QML code.
  • Qt Framework Integration: Optimized for development with the Qt library.

6. Xcode from Apple

XCodeOccupying the sixth spot on my list is Xcode, Apple's flagship IDE. And yes, it's probably most well-known for macOS, iOS, watchOS, and tvOS development, but Xcode is also an excellent choice for C++ developers working on the macOS platform.

In my opinion, its integration with the Apple ecosystem makes it a go-to for developers targeting Apple devices, so it's especially useful if you want to work in multiple languages or you're interested in taking an iOS development course to bolster your C++ skills.

If you've ever used Xcode, you'll know that its interface is sleek and user-friendly, designed to match the aesthetics and functionality of macOS. This creates a seamless development experience for those accustomed to the Apple environment.

But this IDE's design is not just about looks; it's also designed to provide a productive and intuitive workspace.

For me, a stand-out feature of Xcode for C++ development is its powerful and efficient code editor. It offers everything you'd expect, such as syntax highlighting, auto-completion, and easy navigation through complex codebases.

Another big plus for me with Xcode is its sophisticated debugger that's integrated directly into the IDE. And like any good debugger, this provides detailed insights into your code's execution, helping you quickly identify and resolve issues. This is especially useful in C++ development, where debugging can often be challenging.

Xcode also excels with performance optimization. With tools like Instruments, you can analyze and optimize your C++ code for better performance on Apple devices, which is crucial for applications where efficiency and responsiveness are key.

I have to point out that while Xcode is incredibly powerful for macOS and iOS development, its focus on the Apple ecosystem can be a limitation for those looking to develop cross-platform C++ applications.

But if you want a C++ IDE that's optimized for Apple's operating systems and hardware, look no further!

Advantages:

  • Optimized for macOS, providing a seamless and efficient development experience on Apple devices.
  • User-friendly interface that aligns with the macOS aesthetic.
  • Advanced debugging and performance optimization tools tailored for C++.

Disadvantages:

  • Limited to Apple's ecosystem, not suitable for cross-platform C++ development.
  • The learning curve for developers not familiar with the Apple development environment.
  • Some advanced C++ features and integrations might be less comprehensive compared to other dedicated C++ IDEs.

Features:

  • MacOS Integration: Specifically designed for development on Apple's platforms.
  • Efficient Code Editor: Features like syntax highlighting and auto-completion tailored for C++.
  • Sophisticated Debugger: In-depth debugging capabilities integrated into the IDE.
  • Performance Optimization Tools: Instruments for analyzing and enhancing C++ code performance.
  • Apple Ecosystem Support: Ideal for developers targeting macOS and other Apple platforms.

7. Visual Studio Code (VSCode)

VSCodeLanding at number seven on my list is Visual Studio Code (VS Code), a highly versatile and extensible code editor from Microsoft. It seems like VScode can do just about everything nowadays, which is a massive plus point if you code in various programming languages.

And sure, while it's primarily known as a code editor, its vast array of features and VSCode extensions make it a strong contender in the realm of C++ development, rivaling many traditional IDEs.

Perhaps the greatest advantage of VS Code is its lightweight nature. It starts up quickly and remains responsive even with large codebases, which can be a crucial factor for C++ development, where projects can become quite extensive.

This efficiency does not come at the cost of functionality; VS Code is packed with features that support complex development tasks.

Another standout feature of VS Code is its extensibility. The editor can be customized with a plethora of extensions available in the VS Code Marketplace. For C++ developers, this means access to tools for code linting, advanced debugging, intelligent code completion, and even support for build systems like CMake.

VSCode is also compatible with all of the latest AI coding assistants, including popular options like GitHub Copilot and Amazon CodeWhisperer.

The integration of Git is another area where VS Code shines. It offers built-in version control functionality, making it easier to manage code changes and collaborate with others. This integration streamlines the development process, especially for large and distributed teams.

VS Code also boasts excellent cross-platform support, running on Windows, Linux, and macOS. This flexibility is essential for teams or individual developers working in a multi-OS environment, which means you're all set whether you want to use gcc-based compilers, Clang, or MinGW.

You can even install various VSCode themes to customize your coding environment, which is a nice touch.

Despite its many strengths, VS Code might fall short for developers who prefer an all-in-one solution. Relying on extensions for advanced features means you'll need to spend some time setting up and configuring the editor to suit your specific needs.

Advantages:

  • Fast and lightweight, handling large codebases efficiently.
  • Highly extensible with a vast array of extensions for C++ development.
  • Built-in Git integration for easy version control.

Disadvantages:

  • Dependency on extensions for advanced features may lead to a complex setup process.
  • Some developers might prefer the more integrated nature of a traditional IDE.
  • The sheer number of available extensions can be overwhelming for new users.

Features:

  • Extensible Architecture: Customize with extensions for linting, debugging, code completion, etc.
  • Lightweight and Responsive: Ideal for handling large C++ projects without lag.
  • Cross-Platform Compatibility: Runs smoothly on Windows, Linux, and macOS.
  • Built-in Git Support: Streamlines version control and code collaboration.
  • Intelligent Code Editing: Offers syntax highlighting, snippets, and IntelliSense for C++.

8. Atom from GitHub (Now Sunsetted)

AtomNow, before we get started with Atom, I have to point out that it's now been officially sunsetted by GitHub. For me personally, this was a very sad day, as I'd spent many hours coding inside the Atom editor before alternatives like VSCode took over the marketplace.

Despite this, I think it's only fair to include this open-source text editor from GitHub at the eighth spot on my list, as it's still widely used, even if it's no longer being actively developed or maintained.

If you're not familiar with Atom, it's a modern, open-source code editor developed by GitHub. Known for its flexibility and user-friendliness, Atom gained popularity among C++ developers thanks to its customizable and approachable development environment.

One of Atom's hallmark features is its high degree of customizability. Thanks to its package manager, developers can easily install a wide range of add-ons and themes, tailoring the editor to their specific needs. This is particularly beneficial for C++ development, where different projects may require different tools and workflows.

Atom's user interface is another strong point. It's clean, intuitive, and easy to navigate, which makes it an excellent choice for beginners and seasoned developers alike. Despite its simplicity, the interface doesn't compromise on the features necessary for effective C++ development.

The editor supports essential features like syntax highlighting, auto-completion, and file system browsing. Additionally, it offers a built-in package manager for effortlessly finding and installing new packages or themes.

Atom's performance is generally good, though it can be affected when many packages are installed or when working with very large codebases. This is a consideration for C++ developers working on particularly large or complex projects.

Cross-platform support is a key advantage of Atom. It runs on Windows, Linux, and macOS, ensuring a consistent development experience across different operating systems.

However, Atom's focus on being a versatile text editor means that it might lack some of the more advanced features found in specialized C++ IDEs. This can be mitigated to an extent with packages, but it's a factor to consider for developers needing extensive built-in functionality.

Of course, with the sunset having already occurred, your experience with Atom may vary, and I'd probably encourage you to also check out code editor alternatives like Visual Studio Code or Sublime Text, as these offer similar features and are actively maintained.

Advantages:

  • Highly customizable with a range of packages and themes.
  • User-friendly interface, suitable for both beginners and experienced developers.
  • Cross-platform compatibility, supporting Windows, Linux, and macOS.

Disadvantages:

  • Performance can decrease with the use of numerous packages or large files.
  • May require additional packages for advanced C++ development features.
  • Lacks some integrated features of a full-fledged IDE.
  • Now officially sunsetted

Features:

  • Extensive Customizability: Tailor the editor with add-ons and themes.
  • Intuitive User Interface: Clean and approachable design for easy navigation.
  • Essential Editing Features: Includes syntax highlighting, auto-completion, and file system browsing.
  • Built-in Package Manager: Makes it easy to find and install any new or different packages.
  • Cross-Platform Support: Available and consistent across multiple operating systems.

9. Sublime Text

Sublime TextNinth on my list is Sublime Text, a sophisticated and high-performance text editor that's widely appreciated in the programming community, including among C++ developers.

Known for its speed, efficiency, and rich set of features, Sublime Text stands out if you want to prioritize a fast and distraction-free coding environment. It's also compatible with many of the most popular languages, which is ideal if you're a full-stack or multi-purpose developer.

Another key strength of Sublime Text is its lightning-fast performance. This editor is designed to handle large files and complex projects with ease, making it a great choice for C++ development, where projects can become quite extensive and resource-intensive.

Sublime Text also offers a clean and uncluttered interface, which is great for focusing on your code without unnecessary distractions. This minimalist approach is combined with powerful editing features like syntax highlighting, customizable key bindings, code folding, and an advanced search functionality.

Another significant advantage is its "Goto Anything" feature, which allows quick navigation to files, symbols, or lines with just a few keystrokes. For C++ developers dealing with large codebases, this feature can significantly enhance productivity.

The extensibility of Sublime Text is also noteworthy. While it's a lean and efficient editor out of the box, its functionality can be extended with a wide range of plugins available through its package ecosystem. This includes tools and features specifically beneficial for C++ development.

Sublime Text's cross-platform compatibility is another plus, with support for Windows, Linux, and macOS. This versatility makes it suitable for teams and projects that span different operating systems.

One potential downside is that Sublime Text is not free. While there is a free evaluation version, continued use requires a license, which might be a consideration for some users.

Advantages:

  • Exceptional performance, efficiently handling large files and projects.
  • Clean, distraction-free interface with powerful editing capabilities.
  • Extensible with a wide range of available plugins for customized functionality.

Disadvantages:

  • Requires a paid license for long-term use.
  • The minimalist approach might lack some integrated features of more comprehensive IDEs.
  • Reliance on plugins for certain advanced features could be a drawback for those preferring a fully integrated solution.

Features:

  • High-Speed Performance: Optimized for speed and efficiency in handling complex tasks.
  • Minimalist Interface: Focuses on the essentials to provide a distraction-free coding environment.
  • Goto Anything Feature: Enables rapid navigation within the codebase.
  • Extensive Customization: Offers customizable key bindings, themes, and extended functionalities through plugins.
  • Cross-Platform Support: Available on Windows, Linux, and macOS.

10. NetBeans

NetBeansRounding out my list at number ten is NetBeans, a free and open-source integrated development environment. While often thought of as Java IDE, NetBeans also offers robust support for C++ and is favored by developers seeking a comprehensive toolset for larger and more complex projects.

For me, a standout feature of NetBeans is its support for a wide range of C++ features, including native support for complex C++ projects, a wide array of templates, and integration with various build tools like Make and CMake.

NetBeans also excels in providing a smooth development experience with features like code refactoring, syntax highlighting, and intelligent code completion.

Another big plus point for me with NetBeans is its integrated debugger, as it's both powerful and user-friendly, offering valuable insights into the performance and behavior of C++ applications. This feature is crucial for efficiently identifying and resolving issues in complex code.

This C++ IDE also offers dynamic code analysis, which I find super helpful for identifying potential errors and improving the code quality. This is particularly beneficial for large C++ projects where maintaining code quality can be challenging.

While NetBeans offers a comprehensive suite of tools, its interface and workflow might feel a bit more cumbersome compared to some of the lighter IDEs and editors. So this might be a trade-off you need to consider if you want to have such an extensive range of features.

Advantages:

  • Comprehensive C++ support with various project templates and build tools integration.
  • Advanced code editing and debugging tools tailored for C++ development.
  • Dynamic code analysis for improved code quality and performance.

Disadvantages:

  • The interface and workflow may feel bulky compared to lighter IDEs.
  • The initial learning curve can be steep for beginners or those accustomed to more streamlined tools.
  • Being feature-rich, it can be more resource-intensive, requiring a decent hardware setup.

Features:

  • Wide Range of C++ Features: Supports complex projects and integrates with build tools like Make and CMake.
  • Intelligent Code Editing: Offers refactoring, syntax highlighting, and code completion.
  • Powerful Integrated Debugger: Facilitates efficient debugging of C++ code.
  • Dynamic Code Analysis: Helps in identifying and fixing potential code issues.
  • Open Source and Free: Accessible to all developers without licensing costs.

How To Find The Best C++ IDE?

Great question! And trust me, this can be tough!

Sure, in 2024, it feels like everyone's using tools like VSCode for everything, including C++, but what is the best C++ IDE or code editor in 2024?

Well, don't worry, because I want to help!

That's why I've extensively researched the best C++ coding environments based on popularity, functionality, user interface, number of users, and user feedback.

I’ve also included IDEs and code editors in this list that cater to beginners and professional developers, so whatever your skill level, there's something for you.

Plus, to make sure each IDE or editor was up to the task, I've taken the time to put them through their paces for a wide range of C++ projects.

This included installing each on a Windows, macOS, and Linux platform and running a range of file types, from small individual files to multi-folder projects.

This was ideal for confirming that each IDE on our list is up to the task — whether that’s assisting beginner developers or allowing professionals to level up their day-to-day coding.

Wrapping Up: What's The Best C++ IDE?

So there you have it! The 10 best C++ IDEs available in 2024, including C++ IDEs for experienced developers and total beginners.

Whether you’re looking for professional C++ IDEs, lightweight code editors, or simple C++ IDEs to help you learn, there’s something for you on our list.

What do you think? What's your favorite C++ IDE? Let us know in the comments, and as always, happy coding!

Want to take the leap from C++ developer to game developer? Check out:

Udemy's Unreal Engine 5: Learn C++ & Make Video Games

Frequently Asked Questions

1. Does C++ Have An IDE?

Yes, there are several IDES for C++, and many of them are widely used. The specific C++ IDE you’ll choose will invariably end up being a personal decision. Don’t rush into making a decision, and try different IDEs before settling on one. 

2. What Is The Fastest IDE For C++?

The fastest IDE for C++ often depends on the user's machine and project requirements, though Sublime Text is widely recognized for its speed and lightweight design across various systems.

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By Robert Johns

Technical Editor for Hackr.io | 15+ Years in Python, Java, SQL, C++, C#, JavaScript, Ruby, PHP, .NET, MATLAB, HTML & CSS, and more... 10+ Years in Networking, Cloud, APIs, Linux | 5+ Years in Data Science | 2x PhDs in Structural & Blast Engineering

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Vijay Singh Khatri

Hi, For more detailed information or to know it is a IDE or not? You just need to go through with this link: https://atom.io/packages/ide-c-cpp

4 years ago