The Ultimate Web Based IDE

10 March 11

For those pressed for time the ultimate online web IDE is a combination of Shellinabox , GNU Screen and Vim .

If you've got a bit more time read on, find out why a solution for quick fixes has turned into to my favourite way to code.


A basic development iteration

I'm usually developing the following repeatedly through development/maintenace of a Ruby on Rails application.

  1. Have 1 tab open in firefox with shellinabox and make file edits using Vim.
  2. Have another open tab in firefox with my application running and test the changes.
  3. Repeat the first 2 steps until the fix is ready.
  4. Run the unit tests
  5. If all is OK commit changes to git.
  6. Push changes to production which in my case is Heroku.

Using Vim, screen and shellinabox I can run through this cycle quickly. After a while I realised that coding through the browser was no slower than coding in an IDE.

I also like the idea of being able to pick up from where I left off whilst moving from one computer to another.

I now code exclusively in VIM through shellinabox.

Setting up the IDE

Install shellinabox. I'm on debian so I used Install shellinaox on debian. I then point a subdomain to the shellinabox localhost url and port.

Install screen - sudo apt-get install screen

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