Top 10 Ruby on Rails IDEs for Web Development Projects

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Relia Software

Duc Toan

Relia Software


Explore top 10 best Ruby on Rails IDEs, including: RubyMine, Visual Studio Code, Sublime Text, Atom, IntelliJ IDEA, Aptana Studio, NetBeans, Codeanywhere, etc.

top 10 ruby on rails ides

Table of Contents

Ruby on Rails (RoR) is a popular web development framework known for its simplicity, elegance, and developer-friendly conventions. When it comes to RoR development, choosing the right Integrated Development Environment (IDE) can greatly enhance productivity and streamline the development process.

This article will explore the 10 best Ruby on Rails IDEs available in the market, analyzing their features, ease of use, community support, and overall suitability for web development projects.

>> Read more: The 10 Best IDEs for GoLang Web Development

What is IDEs?

IDE stands for Integrated Development Environment. It is a software application that provides developers with comprehensive tools and features to facilitate software development. An IDE typically combines a source code editor, a compiler or interpreter, build automation tools, debugging capabilities, and other features necessary for software development in a single integrated package.

The primary purpose of an IDE is to enhance developers’ productivity and streamline the development process by providing a centralized environment for coding, testing, and debugging software. IDEs often offer features such as code completion, syntax highlighting, code refactoring, version control integration, project management, and debugging tools, which help developers write, organize, and maintain code more efficiently.

Key Features Commonly Found in IDEs

1. Code Editor: A text editor designed for writing and editing source code, offering features like syntax highlighting, code folding, and auto-indentation.

2. Compiler/Interpreter: Integrated tools for compiling or interpreting the source code into executable files or running the code directly.

3. Debugging Tools: Tools that enable developers to track and fix errors in their code by providing features like breakpoints, step-by-step execution, variable inspection, and call stack analysis.

4. Build Automation: Tools for automating the build process, including compiling source code, managing dependencies, and creating executable files or deployment packages.

5. Project Management: Functionality to organize and manage projects, including file navigation, project templates, and project-specific settings.

6. Version Control Integration: Integration with version control systems like Git or SVN allows developers to manage code changes, collaborate with team members, and handle code versioning.

7. Code Refactoring: Tools that help developers improve code quality and maintainability by automatically restructuring or optimizing the codebase.

8. Code Completion: Intelligent suggestions and autocompletion features that assist developers by predicting and automatically inserting code snippets, variable names, function signatures, and other elements.

9. Testing Framework Integration: Support for integrating unit testing frameworks, running tests, and displaying test results within the IDE.

10. Plugin Ecosystem: Extensibility through plugins or extensions that enable developers to customize and enhance the IDE’s functionality based on their specific needs and preferences.

By providing a centralized and feature-rich environment, IDEs aim to enhance developer productivity, improve code quality, and simplify the software development process, making them indispensable tools for developers working on various programming languages and frameworks, including Ruby on Rails.

Top 10+ Best Ruby on Rails IDEs


RubyMine, developed by JetBrains, is a robust IDE designed specifically for Ruby and Rails development. It offers many features like intelligent code completion, refactoring capabilities, debugging tools, and built-in test runners.

Git, Mercurial, SVN, databases/SQL, composer, remote deployment, Vagrant, Capistrano, Chef, Ruby Task Runner, Bundler, RVM/Rbenv, Rails Generator, Zeus, and many other version control systems are all seamlessly integrated with RubyMine.

RubyMine’s strong integration with version control systems and extensive plugin ecosystem make it a top choice for developers seeking a feature-rich Ruby on Rails IDE.

RubyMine, developed by JetBrains, is a robust IDE designed specifically for Ruby and Rails development. (Source: Internet)

Visual Studio Code (VS Code)

VS Code, a highly popular cross-platform code editor, supports Ruby on Rails development through various extensions. Its extensive customization options, integrated terminal, and intelligent code suggestions make it a favorite among developers. With the help of the Ruby and Rails plugins, developers can create a personalized RoR development environment within VS Code.

Sublime Text

Sublime Text is a lightweight and flexible code editor known for its speed and simplicity. Although it lacks some features found in full-fledged IDEs, Sublime Text can be transformed into a capable Ruby on Rails IDE with the help of plugins like SublimeTextRails and SublimeLinter. Its minimalistic design, powerful search functionality, and multiple selection feature make it a preferred choice for developers looking for a fast and efficient coding experience.


Atom, an open-source text editor developed by GitHub, is highly extensible and customizable. With plugins such as Atom Ruby and Rails, developers can transform Atom into a capable Ruby on Rails IDE. Atom offers a user-friendly interface, smart autocompletion, and a vibrant community that develops and maintains a vast collection of packages.

IntelliJ IDEA

IntelliJ IDEA, also developed by JetBrains, is a versatile IDE widely used for various programming languages. Its Ruby plugin offers excellent support for Ruby on Rails development, providing features like code navigation, intelligent code completion, and refactoring tools. IntelliJ IDEA’s smooth integration with other JetBrains tools and intuitive user interface make it a powerful choice for developers seeking a comprehensive IDE.

IntelliJ IDEA
IntelliJ IDEA is a versatile IDE widely used for various programming languages. (Source: Internet)

Aptana Studio

Aptana Studio, built on the Eclipse platform, is a feature-rich IDE specifically designed for web development, including Ruby on Rails. It offers a range of productivity features like code highlighting, code folding, and integrated debugging. Aptana Studio’s support for Git and SVN and its extensive plugin ecosystem make it a reliable choice for Ruby on Rails development.


The potent development tool NetBeans offers enterprise, web, mobile, and desktop application support. In order to help users manage code blocks rapidly, NetBeans also provides auto-completion and refactoring features. They allow users to employ code templates, keywords, and libraries.

With user-friendly features like graphical debuggers and profilers and a productive compiler and editor, NetBeans provides Ruby on Rails developers of all skill levels with a feature-rich platform. It offers fast entry points into build tools like Apache Ant and Maven and has the potential to interface with a number of version control systems. These integrated solutions enable software developers to complete projects faster, reducing their workload and expenses.

Oracle developed this IDE, and it is open source. Because it is a quicker and more intelligent way to code, it also appreciates the assistance of a sizable developer and programmer community. Let’s examine some of this code editor’s standout features for easier Ruby on Rails programming.

netbeans ide for ruby develooment
The potent development tool NetBeans offers enterprise, web, mobile, and desktop application support. (Source: Internet)


Codeanywhere is a cloud-based IDE that supports Ruby on Rails development. With its collaborative capabilities and built-in terminal, developers can work on RoR projects seamlessly from any device. Codeanywhere offers features like code completion, syntax highlighting, and version control integration, making it a suitable choice for developers who prefer cloud-based development environments.


Brackets, an open-source code editor developed by Adobe, provides a lightweight and visually appealing environment for Ruby on Rails development. While not specifically designed for RoR, Brackets can be extended with plugins such as Ruby Language Server to offer code completion and other essential features for Ruby on Rails development. Its live preview feature and excellent HTML and CSS editing capabilities make it a popular choice for web development in general.


Cloud9, an online IDE acquired by Amazon Web Services (AWS), offers a browser-based environment with rich features for Ruby on Rails development. With its collaborative editing, code completion, and debugging capabilities, Cloud9 enables developers to work on RoR projects from anywhere, promoting seamless teamwork and flexibility.

>> Read more about Ruby:

FAQs about Ruby on Rails IDEs

What’s the best IDE for Ruby in general?

Determining the “best” IDE for Ruby development is subjective and can vary based on individual preferences and project requirements. However, RubyMine, developed by JetBrains, is widely regarded as one of the top Ruby on Rails IDEs for Ruby development.

It offers comprehensive features, strong community support, and a user-friendly interface tailored specifically for Ruby and Ruby on Rails projects. However, the best IDE for Ruby development depends on individual preferences and project requirements. Other popular options include Visual Studio Code, Sublime Text, Atom, and IntelliJ IDEA with the Ruby plugin.

Can I use Ruby with my favorite IDE?

Absolutely! Ruby is a widely used language; many IDEs support it out of the box or through extensions. If you’re using an IDE like Visual Studio Code, Atom, or Sublime Text, you’ll likely just need to install a plugin or extension for Ruby support. Check the plugin marketplace or documentation for your specific IDE to start.

How do I set up my IDE for Ruby development?

Setting up your IDE for Ruby development is simple. First, you’ll want to install a Ruby plugin or extension for your IDE if it doesn’t have built-in support. For instance, in Visual Studio Code, you can search for the “Ruby” extension and install it to get syntax highlighting, autocompletion, and more. You may also want to set up a linter like RuboCop and configure your debugging tools for a smoother development experience.

What features should I look for in an IDE for Ruby?

When choosing an IDE for Ruby, you’ll want one that offers syntax highlighting, autocompletion, error detection, and debugging support. Additional features that can improve your development experience include refactoring tools, code navigation, version control integration, and a customizable interface. The ideal IDE for you will depend on your preferences, but these features provide a solid foundation for Ruby development.

Are there any free IDEs available for Ruby development?

Yes, many IDEs for Ruby development, such as Visual Studio Code, Atom, and Sublime Text, are available for free. They provide a range of features and can be enhanced with plugins and extensions. However, some IDEs, like RubyMine, have both free and paid versions with additional features in the paid version.

How do I configure Ruby in Visual Studio Code?

Configuring Ruby in Visual Studio Code is quite straightforward. First, you must install the “Ruby” extension from the marketplace. Once installed, the extension provides syntax highlighting, autocompletion, and other features. You might also want to set up a linter like RuboCop, which can be done by installing the “ruby-robocop” extension. Finally, you can configure your debugging tools and other settings to suit your preferences.

Are there any IDEs specifically designed for Ruby?

While there isn’t an IDE built exclusively for Ruby, RubyMine by JetBrains is a popular choice specifically tailored to Ruby and Ruby on Rails development. It offers comprehensive features, including code navigation, refactoring, debugging, and version control integration. Other general-purpose IDEs, like Visual Studio Code, also have robust Ruby support through plugins and extensions.

How do I debug Ruby code in my IDE?

Debugging Ruby code can vary depending on the IDE you’re using. In RubyMine, for example, you have a built-in debugger that allows you to set breakpoints, step through code, and inspect variables. In Visual Studio Code, you can achieve similar functionality by installing the “Ruby” extension and configuring the debugger according to the documentation. With proper tools and setup, debugging Ruby code should be smooth.

How do I set up autocompletion for Ruby in my IDE?

Autocompletion for Ruby is usually available in IDEs that support the language. Installing a Ruby plugin or extension for your IDE will often enable auto-completion. For instance, you can install the “Ruby” extension in Visual Studio Code, which provides autocompletion, syntax highlighting, and more. Similar plugins or extensions are available for IDEs like Atom and Sublime Text. Once the appropriate plugin or extension is installed, your IDE should automatically provide autocompletion suggestions as you write Ruby code.


Choosing the right IDE is crucial for Ruby on Rails developers to maximize productivity and streamline the development process. The 10 Ruby on Rails IDEs discussed in this analysis offer a range of features and flexibility, catering to the diverse needs of Ruby on Rails developers. Consider factors like personal preferences, project requirements, and the specific features each IDE provides to select the one that best aligns with your development workflow and goals.

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