Aptana Studio

Aptana Studio

Reviewed by Gary Oldwood

"Build your web applications,"


Aptana Studio 3 is the 3rd version in the Aptana Studio series, an open source Integrated Development Environment (IDE). With it you can create your web application and test it using a single workspace. It supports many web programming languages, such as HTML5, CSS3, JavaScript, Python, Ruby and PHP. It can even show you information about each element’s browser support to avoid compatibility issues. Most of Studio’s language editors share in the biggest part the same features, although some of them have unique features.


The installer will guide you through all the steps, which are only a few and easy to follow. At some point you will be asked if you want integration for the following file types with Aptana Studio: .css, .js, .sdoc, .xml, .php. This is actually the last step and the installation will begin right afterwards. The installation package is quite big but it won’t take long to finish.

All Windows operating systems running XP or newer support this program. Linux and Mac OS X versions are also available.


You might seem a bit lost when you first see the main window, but after a while you will realize that it’s not messy at all; on the contrary, everything well-placed in order to give more space to the editor for easier accessibility. On the left side of the window you can see two panes, one below the other. The one on top is the explorer pane, split into two tabs. The first one is the Application explorer and the second one is the Project explorer. In the Project explorer you can locate your work project from a tree structure of your disk and in the Application explorer you can view the scripts within an open project. The bottom pane is for viewing details about the elements of your project. The area on the center is the editor used to work on your project’s files. Below the editor is a window that splits the scripting console, the terminal and the area that logs all the errors. All the features are available to you from the menu bar, some of which are placed in the toolbar for quick access.


HTML5 intellisense is implemented in Studio 3, meaning that the code assist will display matching tags so that you don’t have to finish the phrase. For every element that you type, you can see the level of support for the most popular browsers (Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome, Internet Explorer, Opera and Safari) and decide if you should use a more compatible one if your application is intended for use on various browsers.

The integrated Ruby & Rails and Javascript debugger will help you find errors easily by letting you set breakpoints, inspect variables, control execution and make all the actions that you would find in a professional software of this kind.

Without having counted them all, the commands for every supported language are available from the Commands menu in the menu bar. This makes it easier to complete your script if you have forgotten a command or not sure which one to use.


The debugger is only limited to Ruby & Rails and Javascript, and its support becomes wider only with external plugins (e.g. XDebug for PHP debugging), therefore it should be a main target of improvement for Aptana’s developers.


Adobe Dreamweaver is an IDE that can match up to Aptana Studio 3, but its supremacy over it is questionable. Whilst Dreamweaver has support for languages that Studio 3 doesn’t have (ASP, ASP.NET, Coldfusion), its price is prohibitive to the average user. It is mainly used by professional developers who don’t make their first steps in web development. After spending some time to get familiar with Studio 3 anyone who has the basic programming knowledge can use it. But a big portion of their features is the same, so it lastly comes down to the usage purpose.

NetBeans is another free, open-source web development tool similar to Aptana Studio 3, with support for Java, C/C++, PHP, Javascript, Groovy and Ruby. It is available for many platforms including Windows, Linux, Solaris and Mac OS X.


Aptana Studio 3 is definitely one great, free IDE that not only experts but beginners can use too. It could use some enhancement in some areas, like the debugger, as well as show some more focus on languages like PHP (which is one of the most commonly used web languages nowadays). Other than that, you will be delighted by its capabilities.

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Antivirus information

Download3K has downloaded and tested Aptana Studio on 31 Jul 2018 with some of Today's best antivirus engines and you can find below, for your convenience, the scan results:
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  • NOD32:

Aptana Studio Antivirus Report
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