15 Best C++ IDE: Free Windows Editor | Compiler | 2021

C++ is a general-purpose object-oriented programming language developed by Bjarne Stroustrup. It contains the features of C programming language as well as Simula67 (a first object Oriented language).

There are many Integrated Development Environments (IDE) that provide readymade code templates to write C++ programs. These tools automatically adjust the indent and format of code. IDE’s help to code your application in less amount of time.

Following is a handpicked list of Best C++ IDE, with their popular features and website links. The list contains both open source(free) and commercial(paid) software.

Best C++ Editor and C++ IDE for Windows/Mac OS

Name Link
C++Builder https://www.embarcadero.com/products/
Kite https://www.kite.com/get-kite/
Visual Studio Code https://code.visualstudio.com/
Eclipse https://www.eclipse.org/ide/
Codelite https://codelite.org/

1) C++Builder

C++Builder is the full-featured C++ IDE for building Windows apps five times faster than with other IDEs. That’s because of the rich visual frameworks and expansive libraries. Prototyping, developing and shipping are easy with C++Builder.


  • It supports you through the full development lifecycle to deliver a single source codebase that you simply recompile and redeploy.
  • Featuring an enhanced Clang-based compiler, Dinkumware STL, and packages like Boost and SDL2 in C++Builder’s package manager, and many more
  • Integrate with continuous build configurations quickly with MSBuild, CMake, and Ninja support either as a lone developer or as part of a team.
  • Connect natively to almost 20 databases like MariaDB, Oracle, SQL Server, Postgres and more with FireDAC’s high speed direct access.
  • includes the award-winning VCL framework for high-performance native Windows apps and the powerful FireMonkey (FMX) framework for cross-platform UIs.

2) Kite

Kite is IDE for C++ that automatically completes multiple line codes. This editor supports more than 16 languages. It helps you to code faster with no hassle.

Price: Free


  • It offers Java documentation.
  • This editor provides a function signature as you type.
  • You will get a tooltip on mouse hover.
  • Provides support in email.
  • Uses machine learning models for Java language.

3) Visual Studio Code

Visual Studio Code is an open-source code editor developed by Microsoft. It is one of the best c++ ide which provides smart code completion based on variable types, essential modules, and function definitions.


  • It is one of the best c++ ide for windows that can work with Git version control system.
  • You can debug code easily using this c++ programming software.
  • It is one of the free c++ ide which supports numerous extensions for including new languages, themes, and more.
  • Visual Studio Code can be used on Windows and Mac operating systems.
  • It provides best c++ compiler and you can control multiple versions of one program with ease.

Link: https://code.visualstudio.com/

4) Eclipse

Eclipse is a website development tool for C++. It highlights the syntax you have written. This tool enables you to easily debug the program.


  • This online ide tool automatically validates syntax.
  • It supports parser ( a part of the compiler).
  • Eclipse enables you to manage the project remotely.
  • It can be used on platforms like Windows, Linux, and OS X.
  • This c++ programming software tool generates Makefile that contains instructions for how to build your C++ program.
  • It provides readymade code templates.

Link: https://www.eclipse.org/ide/

5) Codelite

CodeLite is an open source tool for writing programs in C++. It is one of the best c++ ide that supports code refactoring. This app highlights the syntax. You can use it on Windows and Mac operating systems.


  • Codelite can be integrated with Cscope integration (text-based interface to search a code).
  • You can customize syntax colors.
  • This online ide tool helps you to find files effortlessly using a tree view.
  • It is one of the best ide for c programming and c++ that has a command palate that holds functionality like sorting, changing the syntax, etc.

Link: https://codelite.org/

6) Atom

Atom is a simple editor for writing C++ program. It can be customized to do anything without modifying a config file.


  • It is one of the best editor for c++ which has an integrated package manager.
  • This c++ editor tool allows cross-platform editing
  • You can find, preview, and replace text typed in a file or across the entire project.
  • It offers a command palette that contains items that are used repeatedly.

Link: https://atom.io/

7) CLion

CLion is a tool developed by Jetbrains. It helps you to quickly solve errors in the program. This IDE for c++ enables you to analyze the performance of your application with no hassle.


  • You can effortlessly run and debug your program.
  • It helps you to test individual units of source code.
  • You can integrate CLion with CVS (Concurrent Versions System) and TFS (Team Foundation Server).
  • You can customize the editor the way you like.
  • This software helps you to manage your project and code effectively.
  • It automatically set formatting while you write code.

Link: https://www.jetbrains.com/clion/

8) Emacs

Emacs is a Unix based tool that provides a highly customizable feature. It is one of the best c++ ide for mac that supports syntax coloring. You can use this software on GNU, Windows, or mac operating system.


  • It is one of the best c++ editor that supports Unicode for numerous human scripts.
  • It provides a packaging system for installing and downloading numerous extensions.
  • You can customize this app using the Emacs Lisp code.
  • Emacs offers complete built-in documentation.
  • This app offers a tutorial for new users.

Link: https://www.gnu.org/software/emacs/

9) Notepad++

Notepad++ is a code editor that can be used with Windows. This c++ ide tool highlights syntax and keyword. It helps you to work with multiple open files in a single window.


  • It highlights brackets written in C++ program.
  • You can zoom in or zoom out the screen.
  • Macro (Automatic expandable instruction) recording and playback is possible.
  • GUI is customizable.
  • It is one of the best editor for c++ which supports the multi-language environment.

Link: https://notepad-plus-plus.org/

10) Netbeans

NetBeans is an integrated development environment for writing C++ programs. It is one of the best c++ ide for windows that has a project window that shows a list of projects currently exists.


  • You can set exception, variable, function breakpoints, etc. and view them in the Breakpoints window.
  • It automatically adjusts indent and format the code.
  • You can easily see the structure of the C++ class.
  • This tool highlights variables and keywords in your C++ program.
  • It automatically completes the brackets.
  • Netbeans is one of the free c++ ide that offers readymade templates for writing C++ code.

Link: https://netbeans.org/downloads/8.0.1/

11) Codeblocks

Codeblocks is open source IDE for writing programs in C++. It is one of the best c++ ide for mac that supports GCC (GNU Compiler Collection), Visual C++, etc. You can use this app on Windows, Linux, and macOS.


  • This c++ editor provides one of the best c++ compiler and workspace to easily combine more than one project.
  • Codeblocks has a feature that automatically completes the code.
  • You can build more than one project simultaneously.
  • It allows you to write full breakpoint conditions (stop the execution of code if the expression is true).
  • You can quickly switch between multiple programs.
  • It is one of the free c++ ide app which provides a tabbed interface.

Link: http://www.codeblocks.org/

12) Cevelop

Cevelop is one of the best C++ IDE for developers. It enables you to migrate a variable declaration to the new syntax. It is one of the best ide for c++ which helps you to detect uninitialized variables.


  • It makes code more readable by using global namespace (a name representing one entity).
  • This software has a template view that displays detailed template information.
  • It helps you to analyze and optimize the code.
  • Cevelop supports Ctylechecker plugin to find mistakes in the program.

Link: https://cevelop.com/

13) Kdevelop

Kdevelop is an open-source integrated development environment for C++ developers. You can use this software on Windows, Linux, macOS, Solaris, and more.


  • It is one of the best ide for c programming and c++ which provides language support for OpenCL (Open Computing Language).
  • You can jump to the declaration /definition code.
  • Kdevelop helps you to quickly search for any function or class.
  • It can highlight code having different meanings and usage.
  • This c++ editor tool provides one of the best c++ compiler and can highlight the occurrence of same variable in a particular color.
  • You can assign shortcuts to every action in this tool.
  • This tool supports version control systems like Subversion, CVS, Perforce, and more.

Link: https://www.kdevelop.org/

14) SlickEdit

SlickEdit is a cross-platform IDE for writing in the program. It is one of the best c++ editor which supports more than 60 languages. This ide for c++ can load large files quickly.


  • You can customize menu items.
  • It enables you to open a file without typing a path.
  • Easy to integrate Subversion, CVS, etc.
  • You can expand a common block structure.
  • SlickEdit can automatically formats code when pasted.
  • You can create multi-platform GUI dialogue boxes.
  • This c++ editor software automatically saves the file after a period of inactivity.

Link: https://www.slickedit.com/products/slickedit

15) Graviton

Graviton is a user-friendly editor that helps you to write and manage the C++ code effectively. It is one of the best c++ editor which is available in English, Spanish, and many other languages.


  • It is compatible with macOS, Windows, and Linux platforms.
  • Graviton keeps your data on your PC instead of server.
  • You can hide unwanted code in the editor.
  • This tool has an explorer panel that helps you to select files or folders for copying, moving, or deleting.

Link: https://graviton.ml/


❓ What is the IDE in C++?

C++ is a general-purpose, object-oriented programming language developed by Bjarne Stroustrup. An IDE generally contains a source code editor, a debugger, build automation tools. IDE’s help to code your application in less amount of time.

🚀 Which are the Best C++ IDE?

Below are some of the Best C++ IDE:

  • C++Builder
  • Kite
  • Visual Studio Code
  • Eclipse
  • Codelite
  • Atom
  • CLion
  • Emacs

🏅 Why use C++ IDE?

Here are the reasons for using C++ IDE:

  • It provides you readymade code template.
  • This tool automatically validates syntax.
  • It supports code refactoring.
  • It supports syntax coloring.
  • It allows you to set breakpoints.
  • C++ IDE offers a robust debugger.
  • Robust C++ Editor