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I do a lot of work in python, and one thing I have come to loathe is opening up IDLE whenever I need to use the command shell. A lot of editors can do Python syntax highlighting, but I don't know of any that have a live shell terminal. Is there an alternative to IDLE?

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7 Answers 7

IPython is very good. It doesn't have syntax highlighting in the terminal, but opens your system editor for code blocks, which will have highlighting. The IPython frontends all have syntax highlighting too.


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Check out pythonwin: http://wiki.python.org/moin/PythonWin

Syntax highlighting, interactive shell, and all your windows in one task bar slot (hard to describe but very helpful).

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I'd recommend Notepad++ has support for Syntax Highlighting, Code folding, Custom Syntax highlighting formats & with NppExec plugin you can run the script directly from within Notepad++

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Komodo Edit. It supports syntax highlighting, intellisense-like completion, running the code inside the editor like IDLE, and has extensions exactly like Firefox to add extra support for external libraries.

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Check out DrPython. It has an editor with syntax highlighting along with an interactive shell:

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Windows and Linux versions are available, DrPython is free and open source.

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IdleX is an extended version of IDLE. It has a several extensions that make the IDLE shell mimic a regular terminal, like up/down arrow keys that navigate command history and keeping the cursor in the prompt area. It also supports using IPython as the shell rather than a "vanilla" python interpreter.

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PyCharm is worth a look, but isn't free. Might be on the heavy side depending on what you're doing, but for a full featured IDE it's very usable.

PyScripter might be worth a look too.

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