I'm looking for a Java IDE for my PC so I can start to play around with the stuff I've been learning on an online course. Are there any IDEs that have a clean UI, without hundreds of buttons, and a very easy learning curve, even if it's at the expense of more powerful tools?

Edit: basicly I want Notepad but with a run button and highlighting the keywords i'm writing


I recommend following 2 based on your requirements. Both support syntax-highlighting and allow to compile & run from the graphical User-Interface. Of course like Java itself they are free open source software and platform independent.


An IDE designed exclusively for learning Java is BlueJ

BlueJ is an integrated development environment for the Java programming language, developed mainly for educational purposes, but also suitable for small-scale software development. It runs with the help of JDK. BlueJ was developed to support the learning and teaching of object-oriented programming, and its design differs from other development environments as a result. The main screen graphically shows the class structure of an application under development, and objects can be interactively created and tested. This interaction facility, combined with a clean, simple user interface, allows easy experimentation with objects under development. Object-oriented concepts are represented visually and in its interaction design in the interface.

Screenshot of BlueJ on


A lightweight Java IDE is DrJava

DrJava is a lightweight IDE for the Java programming language. Designed primarily for beginners and actively developed and maintained by the JavaPLT group at Rice University, its interface uses Sun Microsystems' Swing toolkit and therefore has a consistent appearance on different platforms.

Screenshot of DrJava on MacOS

Other Java IDEs

For the beginner's purpose of learning Java I would not recommend a fully fledged Java IDE. Because most of them bring along distraction; e.g., project support (Maven/Gradle, Git, refactoring, etc.) you probably wouldn't need at the beginning.

Although find a full Comparison of Java IDEs at Wikipedia.

  • Thanks, I was looking at Sublime Text so I'll try drjava and that for awhile and see which one is better.
    – Eric Ryan
    Dec 6 '20 at 15:16

I would recommend NetBeans, which was an official Java IDE provided by Oracle.

  • Alright i'll check it out
    – Eric Ryan
    Dec 6 '20 at 3:39

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