Tuesday, June 06, 2006

PHP Designer 2006

For a long time I am programming/writing PHP scripts and it is important for me what kind of software I am using. I started with simple text editors on Amiga OS, but when I moved to Linux I really liked Bluefish. Nevertheless, I want to present a freeware PHP Editor, which is very powerful and works with Windows 98/2000/NT/XP - PHP Designer 2006, there is older 2005 version and of course the first version released in 2003 about which there is no point to discuss anymore.

PHP Designer is a powerful freeware PHP IDE often used for writing PHP, but you also can use it for reading, writing and editing HTML, CSS, XML, SQL, Javascript, Visual Basic and so on.. Professionals and Novice users can use it without any problems, it is made that users would feel more comfortable and would create, edit, analyze, optimize and publish different PHP applications much faster - All in one program. PHP Designer 2006 has various features for PHP developers: very nice syntax highlighting for PHP, HTML, CSS, XML, JS, VB, JAVA, C#, different SQL and of course Multi, which highlights most of the formats in one file, I only had problems with XML inside PHP scripts; very nice File Browser; Tabs, for fast change between files they are saved using sessions; built-in FTP, that you could automatically upload files to your server; it can use your php.exe interpretor, with which you can test, debug, execute PHP scripts; great panel for classes functions and includes - very useful if you have a lot of classes and functions and includes in one file; built-in PHP Manual; built-in tools and hints which makes your job easier; support for Windows, Unix, Mac formats; different managers such as ToDo Manager, Project Manager and etc. But one of the most important features is built-in functions which you can use for your applications; full PHP library. Don't forget, that you have a lot of Options to choose from and can customize a lot, but personally I almost prefer the default, I only changed several things from time I installed it.

However, there are some things which I don't really prefer, it is a quite simple debugger, which is using IE engine and shows the result of php.exe, I hope in further versions of PHP Designer more features will be taken from Zend Studio. Personally, its not a problem for me, because I have installed WAMP on my computer (Windows Apache MySQL PHP)and I can easily test my scripts in a browser. Another thing why people don't choose this program is because of its speed when changing between tabs, it is quite slow, even though PHP Designer is very stable and doesn't use a lot of resources from your computer, but I got used to the speed and it is not a problem for me anymore. In addition, I would like to see more options on session saving, something like in the Internet browser Opera.

I can add that this software application was written by Michael Pham from Denmark, he is currently 22 years old student (he was born on February 1983) He has experience with Delphi, Java, C / Linux, PHP, HTML, CSS and SQL.. He started with simple HTML editor when he was about 15-16 years old. He saw a lot of perspectives on the Internet and by little help from others he started PHP Designer the second time, his dream is to make PHP Designer the best free PHP IDE environment,but he does confess that he didn't get rich out of it. Furthermore, he needs to do his studies, his jobs and also look after his family so he can't stay full-time on PHP Designer, but nonetheless he is chap!

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