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Top 7 PHP Development Tools

PHP is undoubtedly one of the most popular programming languages which comes with significant advantages. A lot of developers choose PHP programming over a range of other server-side programming languages including Python and Ruby. There are numerous reasons for this choice coming from every PHP development company that use other languages as well. 

Statistics show some whopping numbers in favor of the PHP program, with as much as 78.9% of websites using PHP as their preferred server-side language for scripting. While there are significant differences when you compare PHP vs Javascript, each platform has their own pros and cons. However, the PHP program is favored for a range of benefits that include things like very manageable PHP error logs, a number of additional modules like Foreach for PHP, latest features help improve the performance of web apps including things like PHP for loop. 

In this article, we are going to talk about the top 7 PHP development tools. From wiping out PHP errors seamlessly to detecting code issues and a range of other aspects of the PHP programming language. PHP development is an extensive field with immense versatility and if you want to take your skills to the next level, these tools will offer you the perfect opportunity while improving performance, and offering a range of other benefits. 

The Top 7 Development Tools You Must Know About in 2023! 

The field of PHP web development is constantly evolving and transforming. There are several new trends and a range of various PHP programs that keep changing from time to time. Here are the 7 top tools every PHP web development expert must know about in 2023! Check them out! 

Zend Studio

Zend Studio is a dynamic PHP IDE tailored for PHP 7. This PHP program is a prime choice among developers. Known for its exceptional speed, Zend Studio allows efficient code writing and debugging with Zend Debugger. This eliminates time-consuming tasks and enhances development fluidity.

Integrating X-ray, Xdebug, and Zend Debugger, Zend Studio offers robust script debugging capabilities. It’s a comprehensive PHP IDE equipped with advanced features that enable seamless application deployment across diverse servers, including cloud-based ones. 

Notable Features:

  1. Smart Code Editor: Enhance coding through an intelligent code editor.
  2. Effective Debugging and Profiling: Debug and profile independently or with Zend Server.
  3. Interoperability: Collaborate using Git, GitHub, CVS, and SVN.
  4. Effortless Deployment: Deploy PHP apps to private and public clouds.
  5. HiDiPi Display Compatibility: Supports DPI scaling and resolutions of HiDiPi displays.


CodeLobster PHP IDE, developed by CodeLobster software firm, holds a special place among PHP development tools, especially favored by the web developer community. It seamlessly supports renowned PHP frameworks such as Laravel, CodeIgniter, CakePHP, Joomla, Drupal, and Symfony, contributing to its widespread acclaim.

Notable Features:

  1. Comprehensive PHP Debugger: Offers deep insights similar to debugging compiled languages to avoid PHP errors. 
  2. Effective Bug Detection: Aids in identifying the root cause of complex and simple bugs.
  3. Framework Plugins: Features plugins for popular frameworks like WordPress, Joomla, and Magento.
  4. Autocompletion Mastery: Facilitates autocompletion of keywords, DOM elements, and properties.

Sublime Text 4

Lightweight and versatile, Sublime Text 4 supports OS X, Windows, and Linux. While not a dedicated PHP IDE, developers can transform it into one by installing specific plugins/packages. This adaptability grants developers flexibility in crafting various PHP apps. 

Notable Features

  1. Multi-Edit Capability: Facilitates over 10 changes simultaneously across multiple sections.
  2. Efficient Line Interaction: Allows interaction with multiple lines, facilitating variable name changes and other modifications.
  3. Split Editing: Supports split editing for improved multitasking.
  4. Instant Project Switch: Offers quick project switching for heightened efficiency.


Initially open-sourced by Sun Microsystems and later overseen by Oracle, NetBeans evolved into Apache NetBeans as it moved to Apache. Starting as a Java development IDE, its recent iterations are more PHP-focused and offer enhanced speed. With over 18 million downloads and a thriving developer community, Apache NetBeans is a notable open-source integrated development environment.

Notable Features:

  1. Robust Code Management: Offers getter-setter generation, efficient project management, smart code completion and editing, quick fixes, hints, code templates, and refactoring.
  2. Effective Debugging: Supports command line or xDebug for efficient local and remote debugging.
  3. Framework Integration: Seamlessly integrates with renowned frameworks, bolstering productivity.
  4. Multi-Language Support: Accommodates languages like PHP, JavaScript, HTML, and CSS.
  5. CMS Compatibility: Supports a variety of Content Management Systems, including Drupal, WordPress, Magento, and Joomla.

AWS Cloud9

AWS Cloud9 introduces a cloud-based PHP IDE, enabling code execution and debugging via any browser-connected device. This cloud-powered solution comprises a code editor, debugger, and terminal, eliminating location restrictions.

Ideal for a wide array of programming languages like C, C++, JavaScript, and Python, AWS Cloud9 provides prepackaged development tools and environments. 

Notable Features

  1. Real-Time Language Analysis: Conducts instant language analysis for efficient coding.
  2. Direct Code Iteration: Enables direct iteration of code for swift adjustments.
  3. AWS Services Integration: Provides access to AWS services for comprehensive functionality.
  4. Built-In Image Editor: Features a built-in image editor for seamless asset management.
  5. Code Reformatting: Supports code reformatting for enhanced organization.


PHPDebugbar, a dynamic PHP debugger, seamlessly integrates into projects to display data from various web applications. Despite its name suggesting PHP exclusivity, PHPDebugbar extends its functionality to include JavaScript and HTML debugging. Its feature-rich nature has propelled it to impressive open-source status.

Notable Features: 

  1. User-Friendly Interface: Offers a clean, fast, and user-centric interface.
  2. Network Traffic Monitoring: Efficiently monitors network traffic.
  3. AJAX Support: Capably handles AJAX requests.
  4. Direct Debugging and Logging: Facilitates direct debugging and logging to DebugBar
  5. Request History Preservation: Enables saving and reopening of previous requests.
  6. Robust Collector Libraries: Employs generic and widely recognized data collector libraries.


Eclipse, renowned for its excellence in PHP projects, stands as a top PHP IDE and development tool. As an open-source platform, it functions under the Eclipse Public License 2.0. Eclipse IDE mandates Java 11 as a minimum version for operation, with varied versions usable for compilation.

Notable Features: 

  1. Extensive Documentation: Empowers developers with comprehensive documentation.
  2. Community Engagement: Active community support aids in addressing queries and concerns.
  3. Code Templates and Formatting: Incorporates pre-designed code templates and formatting.
  4. Unit Testing: Allows efficient unit testing for code accuracy.


That brings us to the end of this article. While these tools are ultimate for PHP programmers, it is equally important for you to know if you want to hire PHP developers or in need of PHP development company for your business. It will help you make the best use of skills and resources and streamline your development tasks.



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