Code::Blocks

Free configurable IDE

Code:: Blocks is a free and open-source integrated development environment designed for programmers. This development tool offers a wide range of codes and project features that help users develop applications and plugins. The app usesC, C++, and Fortran coding languages and operates as a GUI tool.

What makes Code:: Blocks unique is that it focuses on a plugin-based extension platform. With this, users can create the software the way they want to. Not only that, but compared to other IDEs, such as Microsoft Visual Studios, Eclipse, and Clion, this app is easier to use and runs more smoothly.

What is Code:: Blocks?

As mentioned, Code:: Blocks is the perfect resource for programmers and developers who want to create applications and plugins. It contains much more than what usual IDEs have to offer. It offers project templates, which you can use to create your app. These projects are left blank, giving you the creative freedom to write your application however you want. You can use the suggestions and tools that the app provides, but you can also work your way through your codes on your own.

Blocks also come with a useful line duplicating feature, allowing you to save time as you write your codes. With this, you can repeat the same codes several times in the project without rewriting them. The lines can also be edited easily and quickly, making the whole process seamless. Furthermore, the app allows you to get support for multi-threading with its debugging tool. Instead of picking layers apart to debug your project, this app digs into the code to resolve the issue.

For major developers, Blocks has a strong inter-project dependency setup. With this, you can see how different parts affect each other. It also lets you see how your references might be interconnected. Additionally, the program utilizes parallel builds and full break-point support. Another helpful feature is code completion, which aids with the tedious work of correcting code mistakes or recalling keywords that you cannot fully remember.

How do you use Code::Blocks?

Installing the app on your computer is not a complicated process. However, setting it up can be a hassle for beginners. To begin with, you will have to select a compiler. Don’t worry, though, since you can download and link to any compiler you would like. The next step is to choose the debugger path. Then, you will choose the programming language the code will be in—either C or C++. Note that you need to ensure that the compiler supports the language you selected.

All proper debugging and files should fall under a project that you will have to create. You should also note that only toy programs can be done outside an operation. Also, you won’t have access to the debugger in these environments. However, when you do create a project, it will come with everything you need. From relevant information to source codes and header files, everything is within this compilation. Debugging will be your next and final step once you are done creating your project.

Despite being one of the easier-to-use tools, however, Code:: Blocks still requires significant knowledge from the users. All of the Qt tools need to be pre-installed, and unless you are well-versed in programming, this can be time-consuming and difficult. The coding is also dense to read, making it difficult to pick out specific lines of codes. Additionally, the app is limited because the system is becoming more and more outdated, even with the newer versions.

Another thing to note is that the code completion does not work as intended and more work is required for the user to ensure that the code is done. It is a pity since most IDEs ship with some form of code completion. Moreover, you cannot keep two toy programs within a single project. Only one main function file is allowed in tandem within the individual system, making the app inefficient for larger projects, such as corporate software or video games.

Still a good tool for small projects

Overall, Code::Blocks is a helpful and innovative program for developers and programmers. With this, you can create Qt applications and plugins with ease. However, it comes with various limitations and has a bit of a clumsy feel to it. It also inefficient for larger projects. Nevertheless, it is suitable for smaller projects and provides you with all the resources to help you build. 

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