I saw that there is a hackable text editor Atom. I'm just curious is there a similar project for a hackable integrated development environment?

  • The answer to the question is either "Yes" or "No". Whatever the real answer is, do you think it would help you? Nov 10, 2018 at 20:25
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    What does "hackable" mean for you? You can write plugins for Visual Studio. Is that already hackable? If hackable means what it commonly means for Atom, then you want extreme customization. If that's what you want, maybe tell us what you want to achieve with extreme customization? Do you want nobody else to be able to help you with IDE problems? There are many disadvantages using an IDE but making it very different from an IDE. Nov 10, 2018 at 20:28
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    On this site, please always include: a) license requirements: do you need commercial use? b) OS requirements c) price requirements Nov 10, 2018 at 20:29
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    Any open source IDE is hackable, and there are a hundred or more. Please tell us what the IDE should be capable of (example: write and debug Android apps). Also, please tell us more precisely what kind of hacks you want to do: Change the font? Create a plugin? Recompile the whole IDE to fit your CPU?
    – Nicolas Raoul
    Nov 12, 2018 at 8:28
  • I thought that Atom was an IDE :-/ Answer, there are many, for instance Eclipse. I won't bother with a list, but would advise you to look for any IDE that allows plug-ins, and chose one for the language(s) you intend to code in (which you forgot to tell us)
    – Mawg
    Nov 12, 2018 at 12:50

2 Answers 2


Visual Studio Code from Microsoft is a free Editor and perfectly hackable.

And - of course - the good old Emacs. Hackable since 40 years and on.


Both Netbeans and Eclipse are F/OSS software, Eclipse even has a tweaked distribution for people who want to work on the Eclipse code base.

Geany is also a F/OSS IDE. Well, either medium weight text editor with some cool configurable options or a light weight IDE.

All 3 being Open Source, they are the epitome of "hackable"

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    To add to this, there are many different IDEs which are based on Eclipse, because Eclipse is from the ground up built on a plugin architecture. So that makes custom IDEs (read custom sets of plugins that together form the user experience). There are even things like email clients that are based on Eclipse (not saying that this is a good idea).
    – kutschkem
    Nov 12, 2018 at 15:25

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