Coding

A few more days with Komodo IDE 6.0.0 RC1


First off, I think I should be a little more clear on something: It sounds like I’m really down on the latest version of Komodo, and to a certain degree, I am. I got cut off from some features I think are critical for an IDE, and that’s pretty upsetting.

But with that said, Komodo IDE 6.0 (after some tweaking) is the sexiest editor I’ve used in a long time. Honestly, working in Komodo is like coming home. I love this thing.

Faster!

A lot of things are faster in 6.0. Opening files is quicker. Closing files is MUCH quicker (which is useful if you want to close down a bunch after finishing a feature). The native Code Explorer parses files nearly instantly, compared to the add-on I used for 5.0 (though to be fair, this is more a comparison between a paid feature in IDE vs. a free add-on in Edit).

It loads faster. It closes faster. As a direct consequence, it restarts faster when you update your Add-ons.

In short, it really feels like a lot of rough corners have been sanded down, performance-wise.

The new places/project interface

Dead-on exactly the way I want this to work. It’s so much quicker than working with 5.0 was, and makes more sense. I like this so much.

I still haven’t found how to remove a project from the list though. That could be better implemented.

Publishing

The new Publishing feature was pointed out to me in my previous article, and I mentioned I’d give it a try. I just did.

It’s… meh. You set up the local directory and remote directory you want to sync, provide it specific includes and excludes (it by default excludes .svn folders, .git folders, etc), and tell it to go to work. It two-way syncs the two locations and will use whatever server setup you’ve provided (FTP, SFTP, etc.) to do so.

I’m sure it’s more useful than not having it, but certainly not as useful as it could be.

For one, it’s not automatic. I have to manually sync every time I want my changes reflected on the remote site. This is mostly forgivable, though.

Another big problem is the diff list. The “what changes are about to be applied” column is in text, not icons, so there’s no easy way to figure out what files are going to end up where. And want to sort by clicking the column headers? Forget it. There ARE no column headers, and there’s no sorting other than the default. Further, you set up GLOBAL ignore strings – I can’t say “ignore these files locally and these other files remotely”. You just put the string in and it ignores them both ways.

Also, there doesn’t seem to be any way to tell it to only sync one direction. Maybe I want to overwrite my local copy with all the remote changes (like copy the uploads folder from the live site without also transfering my local test uploads to the live server). Maybe I want to overwrite the remote copy with my local changes (like when pushing a new release). The only way to do this manually is to diff the two folders, then manually uncheck whichever files you don’t want to transfer, which is made all the more difficult by the aforementioned “changes column text-only” issue.

This feature feels pretty half-baked right now. It’s not very discoverable (I figured it would a property of the project, since you likely won’t have to just randomly sync a site you’re not working on), relies on having set up servers, which are also not very discoverable (also not a property of the project), not as configurable as it really should be, and when I ran it just now, it finished copying everything fine, but gave me an error at the bottom: “TypeError: lower() takes no arguments (1 given)”. Weird, and does not fill me with confidence.

Summary

The weakness of the sync feature aside, I really, really like RC1. It’s fast, it improves on a lot of things, and honestly it gives me more joy to use than any other editor on my system. I definitely recommend it.

That said, I still only recommend it with some caveats. It’s not polished. You have to search for some answers to your problems, and you have to install some add-ons and change some defaults to get it humming. But once it’s there, it becomes very worthwhile.

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  • Trent Mick

    Trent MickTrent Mick

    Author

    “I still haven’t found how to remove a project from the list though. That could be better implemented.”

    Done (at least in the latest nightlies: http://downloads.activestate.com/Komodo/nightly/). Right-click: “Remove from Recent Projects”.


  • Dan Hulton

    Dan HultonDan Hulton

    Author

    Looking forward to seeing it in RC2, then!

    Thanks!


  • Yasen

    YasenYasen

    Author

    “Done (at least in the latest nightlies:”
    Thanks for this tip. That was the only annoying thing for me :)