Best Lightweight Ide for Python

Best Lightweight IDE for Python There are a lot of IDEs for Python, but they can be a bit heavyweight sometimes. What if you were looking for a lightweight IDE for Python? Here is a list of some good lightweight IDEs.

We all like to use the best editor available for our programming language of choice. However, there are lots of good Python editors. PyCharm is for professional developers who need an advanced range of features; WingIDE has a range of features; Juypter Notebook is lightweight and plugin-based; Spyder is another popular IDE.

What Are IDEs

An IDE (or Integrated Development Environment) is a program dedicated to software development. As the name implies, IDEs integrate several tools specifically designed for software development. These tools usually include:

  • An editor designed to handle code (with, for example, syntax highlighting and auto-completion)
  • Build, execution, and debugging tools
  • Some form of source control

Most IDEs support many different programming languages and contain many more features. They can, therefore, be large and take time to download and install. You may also need advanced knowledge to use them properly.


Category: Code Editor

On the other side of the Text, Editor War stands VI (aka VIM). Included by default on almost every UNIX system and Mac OS X, VI has an equally fervent following.

VI and VIM are modal editors, separating the viewing of a file from the editing of a file. VIM includes many improvements on the original VI, including an extensibility model and in-place code building. VIMScripts are available for various Python development tasks.

Pros: You know VI, you use VI, you love VI. VIMScripts don’t scare you, and you know you bend it to your will.

Cons: Like Emacs, you’re not comfortable finding or writing your own scripts to enable Python development, and you’re not sure how a modal editor is supposed to work.

Plus, you know that VI would be a great text editor, if only it had a decent operating system.

If you’re going with this combination, check out our Python + VIM setup guide with tips and plugin recommendations.

Juypter Notebook:

  • Jupyter is a free
  • Open-source,
  • An interactive web tool is known as a computational notebook, which researchers can use to combine software code, computational output, explanatory text, and multimedia resources in a single document.
  • It is maintained by the people at Project Jupyter.
  • Purpose: To support interactive data science and scientific computing across all programming languages.
  • It is very interactive, easy to use, and great for data science.


  • Initial release date: 3 February 2010
  • License: Community edition: Apache License 2.0; Ultimate edition: Trialware
  • Its community version is free of cost.
  • Operating system: Windows, macOS, Linux (cross-platform IDE and works on macOS, Linux, and Microsoft Windows)
  • It is developed by the Czech company JetBrains.
  • It is very powerful and one of the most widely used IDE.
  • Supports web development and plug-ins and The user interface is also nice and can be easily connected to databases and servers.
  • It can be easily integrated with anaconda and version controls
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  • License: Proprietary
  • Initial release: January 18, 2008, 13 years ago
  • Sublime Text may be downloaded and evaluated for free, however, a license must be purchased for continued use. There is currently no enforced time limit for the evaluation.
  • Sublime Text supports simultaneous editing.
  • It is very easy to use and great for lightweight projects
  • And its features can be enhanced by the use of plug-ins

Visual Studio Code

Category: Code Editor

Built by Microsoft, Visual Studio is a full-featured IDE, in many ways comparable to Eclipse. Built for Windows and Mac OS only, VS comes in both free (Community) and paid (Professional and Enterprise) versions. Visual Studio enables development for a variety of platforms and comes with its own marketplace for extensions.

Python Tools for Visual Studio (aka PTVS) enables Python coding in Visual Studio, as well as Intellisense for Python, debugging, and other tools

Not to be confused with full Visual Studio, Visual Studio Code (aka VS Code) is a full-featured code editor available for Linux, Mac OS X, and Windows platforms. Small and light-weight, but full-featured, VS Code is open-sourceextensible, and configurable for almost any task. Like Atom, VS Code is built on Electron, so it has the same advantages and disadvantages that brings.

Installing Python support in VS Code is very accessible: the Marketplace is a quick button click away. Search for Python, click Install, and restart if necessary. VS Code will recognize your Python installation and libraries automatically.

Visual Studio Code editor

Visual Studio Code or VS Code is an open-source, extensible code editing software generated by Microsoft that can be utilized for Python applications. You can add extensions to make a Python development setting. It delivers support for embedded Git control, IntelliSense completion of code, debugging, syntax highlighting, code refactoring, and snippets. Visual Studio Code is exceptionally well-designed, and its foremost benefit is that it delivers an extension-based structural design. Because this IDE is lightweight, it can be prolonged by adding sequential components as required. Some of its preeminent features are given below:

Visual studio is greatly customizable and extensible through which we can insert debuggers, languages, and themes

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Has a commanding debugger and the users can debug from the code editor itself

Supports auto-code complete and syntax highlighting feature with IntelliSense which finishes syntax based on variable types and function definition

Has a strong integration with GIT.  Hence, the user can execute GIT operations like commit straight and push from the editor.

Pros: Thanks to Electron, VS Code is available on every platform, surprisingly full-featured despite having a small footprint, and open-source.

Good layout and smart interface

Provides multi-language support and many additional functionalities

Supports the use of multi-split window and vertical orientation trait

Sanctions the usage of many plugins

Cons: Electron means VS Code is not a native app. Plus, some people may have principled reasons to not use Microsoft resources.

Initially, it takes time to launch

Examining with VS code is extremely slow

Be sure to consult our tutorial on using Visual Studio Code for Python development, as well as the companion video course, to make the most of this setup.



Emacs was developed in 1976 by Richard Stallman.  It is a completely free Python IDE.  It is a customizable software obtainable on all platforms. Emacs utilizes a form of the commanding Lisp programming language for customization, and numerous customization scripts exist for development in Python. Guido van Rossum, the creator of Python, accepted Emacs as the best text editor for Python in one of his tweets in 2016 – Emacs of course! Below mentioned are some of its imperative features:

24-bit color encrypted support for the terminals assists it

Programmed indentation such as newlines, spaces, and brackets for constant formatting in the file

Syntax highlighting to distinguish document elements like comments and keywordsPros

24-bit color encrypted support for terminals supporting it

Automatic inclusion of elements like newlines, spaces, and brackets

Free and completely customizableCons

Not easy to use for beginners



Thonny is an IDE created by the Institute of Computer Science at the University of Tartu in Estonia.  This software has been intended essentially to make life easier for beginners in Python by supplying them with a simple and lightweight IDE. Thonny is accessible for all chief platforms, with installation directions on the site. It sets up its own bundled version of Python, by default, so you do not require to install anything new. It has a basic and functional user interface and does not necessitate a huge amount of memory to function.  Below stated are some of its vital features:

Offers the capability to the users to examine how python internally assesses the written expressions

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Permits developers to observe how their shell commands and code affect Python variables

Python function call unlocks a different window with discrete local variables table and code pointer

An easy debugger with F5 to F7 function keys

Supports good demonstration of highlighting errors, function calls, and auto code completion trait

Automatically identify the syntax errors

Friendly for the beginners

Clean and simple GUI

Helps to elucidate scopes by highlighting spots

Users can alter the mode for explaining the references

Creation of plugin is slow

Interface design is limited to text editing

Lack of support for templates



Termed Pydee in its initial versions, Spyder was established by Pierre Raybaut in 2008.  Spyder is another great cross-platform and open-source Python IDE.  It is also known as Scientific Python Development IDE and is the most lightweight Python IDE. It is mostly exercised by data scientists who can incorporate with SciPy, Pandas, Matplotlib, NumPy, IPython, SymPy, Cython, and other such open-source software. It comprises Anaconda package manager distribution and has some helpful advanced traits such as debug, edit, and data exploration. It presents an exclusive combination of innovative debugging, analysis, interactive execution, editing, in-depth inspection, and visualization competencies of scientific software packages. These chief components are documentation viewer, interactive console, development tools, and variable explorer.  Below are some of the vital characteristics of this IDE:

Capability to identify and edit variables from the GUI

Syntax highlighting and intelligent auto-completion of code

Proficient in tracking every step of the script execution by an influential debugger

Static code scrutiny

Plan a time-series or histogram, make alterations in NumPy array or data frame

Considered as the best Python editor for Windows which permits you to execute Python code by line, cell, or filePros

Powerful debugger traces every step of script execution

Efficient in searching and eradicating bottlenecks to unchain code presentation

Supports prolonged plugins to invent its functionality to another level

Instantly view object documents and alter your filesCons

Performance decreases when numerous plugins are invoked at the same time

Execution dependencies


Let’s admit it, some IDEs are too heavy for us. They are not suitable for the projects of small teams, hobbyists, or even business startups. Yes, we can work with them but we’re just wasting our time and computer resources on something we don’t need.

Sometimes we just need a simple and light program that allows us to write and run our programs: to edit and create files, to set breakpoints and do debugging, and so on. There is a good example of such a tool. It’s called Python IDLE.

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