Alternatives to Vim logo

Alternatives to Vim

Emacs, Neovim, Atom, Notepad++, and Sublime Text are the most popular alternatives and competitors to Vim.
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What is Vim and what are its top alternatives?

Vim is a highly configurable text editor built to enable efficient text editing. It is known for its powerful features like multiple modes (normal, insert, visual, etc.), extensive plugin system, and strong keyboard shortcuts for navigation and editing. However, Vim has a steep learning curve and can be intimidating for new users who are not familiar with modal editing. Additionally, customization requires editing configuration files, which may not be beginner-friendly.

  1. Emacs: Emacs is another powerful and customizable text editor that offers a wide range of features like extensibility through Emacs Lisp, multiple modes, and a rich set of built-in tools. Pros: Highly extensible, offers a wide variety of functionalities. Cons: Steep learning curve, can be resource-intensive.
  2. Visual Studio Code: Visual Studio Code is a popular open-source code editor developed by Microsoft. It features a user-friendly interface, built-in Git integration, extensions marketplace, and support for multiple languages. Pros: Modern interface, extensive plugin ecosystem. Cons: Less efficient for pure text editing compared to Vim.
  3. Sublime Text: Sublime Text is a lightweight and fast text editor with a minimalist design. It offers features like multiple cursors, split editing, and a powerful API for customization. Pros: Speedy performance, sleek interface. Cons: Not as feature-rich out of the box as Vim.
  4. Atom: Atom is a hackable text editor developed by GitHub. It is known for its flexibility, built-in package manager, and modern interface. Pros: Highly customizable, extensive package library. Cons: Can be slower compared to other text editors.
  5. Neovim: Neovim is a fork of Vim aimed at improving codebase maintainability and easing the process of adding new features. It maintains compatibility with Vim while improving performance and extensibility. Pros: Modern features, compatibility with Vim plugins. Cons: Not as widely adopted as Vim.
  6. UltraEdit: UltraEdit is a feature-packed text editor known for its powerful editing capabilities, syntax highlighting, and file comparison tools. Pros: Robust editing features, supports large files. Cons: Paid software.
  7. TextMate: TextMate is a Mac-specific text editor that offers a simple and clean interface along with features like project organization, auto-pairing, and syntax highlighting. Pros: Simplified interface, efficient for coding tasks. Cons: Limited to macOS users.
  8. GNU Nano: GNU Nano is a command-line text editor with a basic set of features suitable for simple text editing tasks. Pros: Lightweight, easy to use. Cons: Lacks advanced features compared to Vim.
  9. Kakoune: Kakoune is a modal code editor inspired by Vim and aims to enhance its editing paradigm. It offers features like multiple selections, client-server architecture, and a powerful plugin system. Pros: Improved editing workflow, extensibility. Cons: Less widely adopted than Vim.
  10. Brackets: Brackets is an open-source text editor specifically designed for web development. It provides features like live preview, preprocessor support, and visual tools for CSS editing. Pros: Tailored for web development tasks, real-time feedback. Cons: Limited functionality for non-web development tasks.

Top Alternatives to Vim

  • Emacs
    Emacs

    GNU Emacs is an extensible, customizable text editor—and more. At its core is an interpreter for Emacs Lisp, a dialect of the Lisp programming language with extensions to support text editing. ...

  • Neovim
    Neovim

    Neovim is a project that seeks to aggressively refactor Vim in order to: simplify maintenance and encourage contributions, split the work between multiple developers, enable the implementation of new/modern user interfaces without any modifications to the core source, and improve extensibility with a new plugin architecture. ...

  • Atom
    Atom

    At GitHub, we're building the text editor we've always wanted. A tool you can customize to do anything, but also use productively on the first day without ever touching a config file. Atom is modern, approachable, and hackable to the core. We can't wait to see what you build with it. ...

  • Notepad++
    Notepad++

    Notepad++ is a free (as in "free speech" and also as in "free beer") source code editor and Notepad replacement that supports several languages. Running in the MS Windows environment, its use is governed by GPL License. ...

  • Sublime Text
    Sublime Text

    Sublime Text is available for OS X, Windows and Linux. One license is all you need to use Sublime Text on every computer you own, no matter what operating system it uses. Sublime Text uses a custom UI toolkit, optimized for speed and beauty, while taking advantage of native functionality on each platform. ...

  • JavaScript
    JavaScript

    JavaScript is most known as the scripting language for Web pages, but used in many non-browser environments as well such as node.js or Apache CouchDB. It is a prototype-based, multi-paradigm scripting language that is dynamic,and supports object-oriented, imperative, and functional programming styles. ...

  • Git
    Git

    Git is a free and open source distributed version control system designed to handle everything from small to very large projects with speed and efficiency. ...

  • GitHub
    GitHub

    GitHub is the best place to share code with friends, co-workers, classmates, and complete strangers. Over three million people use GitHub to build amazing things together. ...

Vim alternatives & related posts

Emacs logo

Emacs

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The extensible self-documenting text editor.
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PROS OF EMACS
  • 65
    Vast array of extensions
  • 44
    Have all you can imagine
  • 40
    Everything i need in one place
  • 39
    Portability
  • 32
    Customer config
  • 16
    Your config works on any platform
  • 13
    Low memory consumption
  • 11
    Perfect for monsters
  • 10
    All life inside one program
  • 8
    Extendable, portable, fast - all at your fingertips
  • 6
    Enables extremely rapid keyboard-only navigation
  • 5
    Widely-used keybindings (e.g. by bash)
  • 5
    Extensible in Lisp
  • 5
    Runs everywhere important
  • 4
    FOSS Software
  • 4
    Powerful multilanguage IDE
  • 4
    Git integration
  • 4
    May be old but always reliable
  • 3
    Asynchronous
  • 3
    Powerful UI
  • 1
    Huge ecosystem
CONS OF EMACS
  • 4
    So good and extensible, that one can get sidetracked
  • 4
    Hard to learn for beginners
  • 1
    Not default preinstalled in GNU/linux

related Emacs posts

Neovim logo

Neovim

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183
Vim's rebirth for the 21st century
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730
+ 1
183
PROS OF NEOVIM
  • 31
    Modern and more powerful Vim
  • 27
    Fast
  • 22
    Asynchronous plugins
  • 20
    Stable
  • 18
    Edit text fast
  • 15
    Great community
  • 15
    Vim plugins work out of the box
  • 9
    Embedable
  • 8
    Unix-like
  • 8
    Built-in terminal support
  • 4
    Plugins in any language
  • 2
    External GUIs
  • 2
    Great Colorschemes
  • 2
    Extremely customizable
CONS OF NEOVIM
    Be the first to leave a con

    related Neovim posts

    Rogério R. Alcântara

    For a Visual Studio Code/Atom developer that works mostly with Node.js/TypeScript/Ruby/Go and wants to get rid of graphic-text-editors-IDE-like at once, which one is worthy of investing time to pick up?

    I'm a total n00b on the subject, but I've read good things about Neovim's Lua support, and I wonder what would be the VIM response/approach for it?

    See more

    Hi, so I have been contracted by a peer to create a website using React with Java as the backend for server-side applications. I have the project listed on GitHub, and you can find it by searching for my username. The question I have is what is the fastest way to correctly learn all the necessary technologies needed to host the website? I'm also learning Neovim because I used Visual Studio Code for a bit and hated it, so if anyone has advice relating to Neovim that would also be appreciated. Thanks for providing some advice, I have little idea of where I need to go and some direction would be well appreciated. Cheers! Jls

    See more
    Atom logo

    Atom

    16.8K
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    A hackable text editor for the 21st Century
    16.8K
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    PROS OF ATOM
    • 529
      Free
    • 449
      Open source
    • 343
      Modular design
    • 321
      Hackable
    • 316
      Beautiful UI
    • 147
      Backed by github
    • 119
      Built with node.js
    • 113
      Web native
    • 107
      Community
    • 35
      Packages
    • 18
      Cross platform
    • 5
      Nice UI
    • 5
      Multicursor support
    • 5
      TypeScript editor
    • 3
      Open source, lots of packages, and so configurable
    • 3
      cli start
    • 3
      Simple but powerful
    • 3
      Chrome Inspector works IN EDITOR
    • 3
      Snippets
    • 2
      Code readability
    • 2
      It's powerful
    • 2
      Awesome
    • 2
      Smart TypeScript code completion
    • 2
      Well documented
    • 1
      works with GitLab
    • 1
      "Free", "Hackable", "Open Source", The Awesomness
    • 1
      full support
    • 1
      vim support
    • 1
      Split-Tab Layout
    • 1
      Apm publish minor
    • 1
      Consistent UI on all platforms
    • 1
      User friendly
    • 1
      Hackable and Open Source
    • 0
      Publish
    CONS OF ATOM
    • 19
      Slow with large files
    • 7
      Slow startup
    • 2
      Most of the time packages are hard to find.
    • 1
      No longer maintained
    • 1
      Cannot Run code with F5
    • 1
      Can be easily Modified

    related Atom posts

    Jerome Dalbert
    Principal Backend Software Engineer at StackShare · | 13 upvotes · 919.8K views

    I liked Sublime Text for its speed, simplicity and keyboard shortcuts which synergize well when working on scripting languages like Ruby and JavaScript. I extended the editor with custom Python scripts that improved keyboard navigability such as autofocusing the sidebar when no files are open, or changing tab closing behavior.

    But customization can only get you so far, and there were little things that I still had to use the mouse for, such as scrolling, repositioning lines on the screen, selecting the line number of a failing test stack trace from a separate plugin pane, etc. After 3 years of wearily moving my arm and hand to perform the same repetitive tasks, I decided to switch to Vim for 3 reasons:

    • your fingers literally don’t ever need to leave the keyboard home row (I had to remap the escape key though)
    • it is a reliable tool that has been around for more than 30 years and will still be around for the next 30 years
    • I wanted to "look like a hacker" by doing everything inside my terminal and by becoming a better Unix citizen

    The learning curve is very steep and it took me a year to master it, but investing time to be truly comfortable with my #TextEditor was more than worth it. To me, Vim comes close to being the perfect editor and I probably won’t need to switch ever again. It feels good to ignore new editors that come out every few years, like Atom and Visual Studio Code.

    See more
    Julian Sanchez
    Lead Developer at Chore Champion · | 9 upvotes · 773.9K views

    We use Visual Studio Code because it allows us to easily and quickly integrate with Git, much like Sublime Merge ,but it is integrated into the IDE. Another cool part about VS Code is the ability collaborate with each other with Visual Studio Live Share which allows our whole team to get more done together. It brings the convenience of the Google Suite to programming, offering something that works more smoothly than anything found on Atom or Sublime Text

    See more
    Notepad++ logo

    Notepad++

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    Free source code editor and Notepad replacement
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    PROS OF NOTEPAD++
    • 103
      Syntax for all languages that i use
    • 59
      Tabbed ui
    • 56
      Great code editor
    • 53
      Fast and lightweight
    • 38
      Plugins
    • 28
      Nice GUI
    • 26
      Regex & Special Character Search & Replace
    • 16
      Fast startup
    • 9
      Application is free, and plugins are too
    • 9
      Themes
    • 6
      Free
    • 4
      Very Lightweight
    • 3
      100% Free
    • 2
      Column selection
    • 1
      Awesome autocomplete
    • 1
      Easy edit on FTP servers (NppFTP)
    • 1
      Cos it's seck
    • 1
      Nice gui. are you kidding me?
    • 1
      Open Sourced
    CONS OF NOTEPAD++
    • 3
      No default plugin manager
    • 2
      Can't install more advanced packets

    related Notepad++ posts

    Hey there, I am using Visual Studio for C++ and Notepad++ for web development. Should I switch to Visual Studio or Visual Studio Code for web development?

    See more
    Gustavo Muñoz
    Senior Software Engineer at JOOR · | 3 upvotes · 314.6K views

    I have chosen Visual Studio Code after testing a lot of other editors like Atom, Sublime Text (with legal license), Vim or even Notepad++ because it is the sum of all their virtues and none of their defects. It's fast, it has all the tools and plugins I need to work, and it's pretty and very good optimized. It has what I need to work and nothing more. And the main plugins works like a charm. Developing for React or Flutter is amazing. Even the TypeScript plugin works great. I like how IntelliSense works, and all the extra tools to code remotely using #ssh, access #RESTfulAPI or event manage projects or collaborating remotely. Thanks #Microsoft for Visual Studio Code.

    See more
    Sublime Text logo

    Sublime Text

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    A sophisticated text editor for code, markup and prose.
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    PROS OF SUBLIME TEXT
    • 720
      Lightweight
    • 652
      Plugins
    • 641
      Super fast
    • 468
      Great code editor
    • 442
      Cross platform
    • 280
      Nice UI
    • 260
      Unlimited trial
    • 153
      Cmd + d is the best command ever
    • 92
      Great community
    • 46
      Package control, modules
    • 26
      Mac OS X support
    • 23
      Easy to get started with
    • 22
      Monokai
    • 21
      Everything you need without the bloat
    • 21
      Built in Python
    • 18
      Easy
    • 14
      Speed
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      Session & edit resuming
    • 10
      Package Control
    • 9
      Well Designed
    • 8
      Multiple selections
    • 7
      ALT + CMD + DOWN is the best command ever
    • 7
      Nice
    • 7
      Fast, simple and lightweight
    • 5
      It's easy to use, beautiful, simple, and plugins rule
    • 5
      So futuristic and convenient
    • 5
      ALT + F3 the best command ever
    • 5
      Great
    • 4
      Find anything fast within entire project
    • 4
      Easy to use
    • 4
      Free
    • 4
      Simple and clean design
    • 3
      Hackable
    • 3
      Pretty
    • 3
      UI + plugins
    • 3
      Sublime Merge (Git Integration)
    • 2
      Totally customizable
    • 2
      Color schemes and cmd+d
    • 2
      Material theme best theme forever
    • 0
      Const
    CONS OF SUBLIME TEXT
    • 8
      Steep learning curve
    • 6
      Everything
    • 4
      Flexibility to move file
    • 4
      Number of plugins doing the same thing
    • 4
      Doesn't act like a Mac app
    • 3
      Not open sourced
    • 2
      Don't have flutter integration
    • 2
      Forces you to buy license

    related Sublime Text posts

    Johnny Bell

    I've been in the #frontend game for about 7 years now. I started coding in Sublime Text because all of the tutorials I was doing back then everyone was using it. I found the speed amazing compared to some other tools at the time. I kept using Sublime Text for about 4-5 years.

    I find Sublime Text lacks some functionality, after all it is just a text editor rather than a full fledged IDE. I finally converted over to PhpStorm as I was working with Magento and Magento as you know is mainly #PHP based.

    This was amazing all the features in PhpStorm I loved, the debugging features, and the control click feature when you click on a dependency or linked file it will take you to that file. It was great.

    PhpStorm is kind of slow, I found that Prettier was taking a long time to format my code, and it just was lagging a lot so I was looking for alternatives. After watching some more tutorial videos I noticed that everyone was using Visual Studio Code. So I gave it a go, and its amazing.

    It has support for everything I need with the plugins and the integration with Git is amazing. The speed of this IDE is blazing fast, and I wouldn't go back to using PhpStorm anymore. I highly recommend giving Visual Studio Code a try!

    See more
    Labinator Team

    At labinator.com, we use HTML5, CSS 3, Sass, Vanilla.JS and PHP when building our premium WordPress themes and plugins. When writing our codes, we use Sublime Text and Visual Studio Code depending on the project. We run Manjaro and Debian operating systems in our office. Manjaro is a great desktop operating system for all range of tasks while Debian is a solid choice for servers.

    WordPress became a very popular choice when it comes to content management systems and building websites. It is easy to learn and has a great community behind it. The high number of plugins as well that are available for WordPress allows any user to customize it depending on his/her needs.

    For development, HTML5 with Sass is our go-to choice when building our themes.

    Main Advantages Of Sass:

    • It's CSS syntax friendly
    • It offers variables
    • It uses a nested syntax
    • It includes mixins
    • Great community and online support.
    • Great documentation that is easy to read and follow.

    As for PHP, we always thrive to use PHP 7.3+. After the introduction of PHP 7, the WordPress development process became more stable and reliable than before. If you a developer considering PHP 7.3+ for your project, it would be good to note the following benefits.

    The Benefits Of Using PHP:

    • Open Source.
    • Highly Extendible.
    • Easy to learn and read.
    • Platform independent.
    • Compatible with APACHE.
    • Low development and maintenance cost.
    • Great community and support.
    • Detailed documentation that has everything you need!

    Why PHP 7.3+?

    • Flexible Heredoc & Nowdoc Syntaxes - Two key methods for defining strings within PHP. They also became easier to read and more reliable.
    • A good boost in performance speed which is extremely important when it comes to WordPress development.
    See more
    JavaScript logo

    JavaScript

    354K
    269.2K
    8.1K
    Lightweight, interpreted, object-oriented language with first-class functions
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    PROS OF JAVASCRIPT
    • 1.7K
      Can be used on frontend/backend
    • 1.5K
      It's everywhere
    • 1.2K
      Lots of great frameworks
    • 897
      Fast
    • 745
      Light weight
    • 425
      Flexible
    • 392
      You can't get a device today that doesn't run js
    • 286
      Non-blocking i/o
    • 237
      Ubiquitousness
    • 191
      Expressive
    • 55
      Extended functionality to web pages
    • 49
      Relatively easy language
    • 46
      Executed on the client side
    • 30
      Relatively fast to the end user
    • 25
      Pure Javascript
    • 21
      Functional programming
    • 15
      Async
    • 13
      Full-stack
    • 12
      Setup is easy
    • 12
      Future Language of The Web
    • 12
      Its everywhere
    • 11
      Because I love functions
    • 11
      JavaScript is the New PHP
    • 10
      Like it or not, JS is part of the web standard
    • 9
      Expansive community
    • 9
      Everyone use it
    • 9
      Can be used in backend, frontend and DB
    • 9
      Easy
    • 8
      Most Popular Language in the World
    • 8
      Powerful
    • 8
      Can be used both as frontend and backend as well
    • 8
      For the good parts
    • 8
      No need to use PHP
    • 8
      Easy to hire developers
    • 7
      Agile, packages simple to use
    • 7
      Love-hate relationship
    • 7
      Photoshop has 3 JS runtimes built in
    • 7
      Evolution of C
    • 7
      It's fun
    • 7
      Hard not to use
    • 7
      Versitile
    • 7
      Its fun and fast
    • 7
      Nice
    • 7
      Popularized Class-Less Architecture & Lambdas
    • 7
      Supports lambdas and closures
    • 6
      It let's me use Babel & Typescript
    • 6
      Can be used on frontend/backend/Mobile/create PRO Ui
    • 6
      1.6K Can be used on frontend/backend
    • 6
      Client side JS uses the visitors CPU to save Server Res
    • 6
      Easy to make something
    • 5
      Clojurescript
    • 5
      Promise relationship
    • 5
      Stockholm Syndrome
    • 5
      Function expressions are useful for callbacks
    • 5
      Scope manipulation
    • 5
      Everywhere
    • 5
      Client processing
    • 5
      What to add
    • 4
      Because it is so simple and lightweight
    • 4
      Only Programming language on browser
    • 1
      Test
    • 1
      Hard to learn
    • 1
      Test2
    • 1
      Not the best
    • 1
      Easy to understand
    • 1
      Subskill #4
    • 1
      Easy to learn
    • 0
      Hard 彤
    CONS OF JAVASCRIPT
    • 22
      A constant moving target, too much churn
    • 20
      Horribly inconsistent
    • 15
      Javascript is the New PHP
    • 9
      No ability to monitor memory utilitization
    • 8
      Shows Zero output in case of ANY error
    • 7
      Thinks strange results are better than errors
    • 6
      Can be ugly
    • 3
      No GitHub
    • 2
      Slow
    • 0
      HORRIBLE DOCUMENTS, faulty code, repo has bugs

    related JavaScript posts

    Zach Holman

    Oof. I have truly hated JavaScript for a long time. Like, for over twenty years now. Like, since the Clinton administration. It's always been a nightmare to deal with all of the aspects of that silly language.

    But wowza, things have changed. Tooling is just way, way better. I'm primarily web-oriented, and using React and Apollo together the past few years really opened my eyes to building rich apps. And I deeply apologize for using the phrase rich apps; I don't think I've ever said such Enterprisey words before.

    But yeah, things are different now. I still love Rails, and still use it for a lot of apps I build. But it's that silly rich apps phrase that's the problem. Users have way more comprehensive expectations than they did even five years ago, and the JS community does a good job at building tools and tech that tackle the problems of making heavy, complicated UI and frontend work.

    Obviously there's a lot of things happening here, so just saying "JavaScript isn't terrible" might encompass a huge amount of libraries and frameworks. But if you're like me, yeah, give things another shot- I'm somehow not hating on JavaScript anymore and... gulp... I kinda love it.

    See more
    Conor Myhrvold
    Tech Brand Mgr, Office of CTO at Uber · | 44 upvotes · 11.1M views

    How Uber developed the open source, end-to-end distributed tracing Jaeger , now a CNCF project:

    Distributed tracing is quickly becoming a must-have component in the tools that organizations use to monitor their complex, microservice-based architectures. At Uber, our open source distributed tracing system Jaeger saw large-scale internal adoption throughout 2016, integrated into hundreds of microservices and now recording thousands of traces every second.

    Here is the story of how we got here, from investigating off-the-shelf solutions like Zipkin, to why we switched from pull to push architecture, and how distributed tracing will continue to evolve:

    https://eng.uber.com/distributed-tracing/

    (GitHub Pages : https://www.jaegertracing.io/, GitHub: https://github.com/jaegertracing/jaeger)

    Bindings/Operator: Python Java Node.js Go C++ Kubernetes JavaScript OpenShift C# Apache Spark

    See more
    Git logo

    Git

    293.2K
    175.6K
    6.6K
    Fast, scalable, distributed revision control system
    293.2K
    175.6K
    + 1
    6.6K
    PROS OF GIT
    • 1.4K
      Distributed version control system
    • 1.1K
      Efficient branching and merging
    • 959
      Fast
    • 845
      Open source
    • 726
      Better than svn
    • 368
      Great command-line application
    • 306
      Simple
    • 291
      Free
    • 232
      Easy to use
    • 222
      Does not require server
    • 27
      Distributed
    • 22
      Small & Fast
    • 18
      Feature based workflow
    • 15
      Staging Area
    • 13
      Most wide-spread VSC
    • 11
      Role-based codelines
    • 11
      Disposable Experimentation
    • 7
      Frictionless Context Switching
    • 6
      Data Assurance
    • 5
      Efficient
    • 4
      Just awesome
    • 3
      Github integration
    • 3
      Easy branching and merging
    • 2
      Compatible
    • 2
      Flexible
    • 2
      Possible to lose history and commits
    • 1
      Rebase supported natively; reflog; access to plumbing
    • 1
      Light
    • 1
      Team Integration
    • 1
      Fast, scalable, distributed revision control system
    • 1
      Easy
    • 1
      Flexible, easy, Safe, and fast
    • 1
      CLI is great, but the GUI tools are awesome
    • 1
      It's what you do
    • 0
      Phinx
    CONS OF GIT
    • 16
      Hard to learn
    • 11
      Inconsistent command line interface
    • 9
      Easy to lose uncommitted work
    • 7
      Worst documentation ever possibly made
    • 5
      Awful merge handling
    • 3
      Unexistent preventive security flows
    • 3
      Rebase hell
    • 2
      When --force is disabled, cannot rebase
    • 2
      Ironically even die-hard supporters screw up badly
    • 1
      Doesn't scale for big data

    related Git posts

    Simon Reymann
    Senior Fullstack Developer at QUANTUSflow Software GmbH · | 30 upvotes · 9.9M views

    Our whole DevOps stack consists of the following tools:

    • GitHub (incl. GitHub Pages/Markdown for Documentation, GettingStarted and HowTo's) for collaborative review and code management tool
    • Respectively Git as revision control system
    • SourceTree as Git GUI
    • Visual Studio Code as IDE
    • CircleCI for continuous integration (automatize development process)
    • Prettier / TSLint / ESLint as code linter
    • SonarQube as quality gate
    • Docker as container management (incl. Docker Compose for multi-container application management)
    • VirtualBox for operating system simulation tests
    • Kubernetes as cluster management for docker containers
    • Heroku for deploying in test environments
    • nginx as web server (preferably used as facade server in production environment)
    • SSLMate (using OpenSSL) for certificate management
    • Amazon EC2 (incl. Amazon S3) for deploying in stage (production-like) and production environments
    • PostgreSQL as preferred database system
    • Redis as preferred in-memory database/store (great for caching)

    The main reason we have chosen Kubernetes over Docker Swarm is related to the following artifacts:

    • Key features: Easy and flexible installation, Clear dashboard, Great scaling operations, Monitoring is an integral part, Great load balancing concepts, Monitors the condition and ensures compensation in the event of failure.
    • Applications: An application can be deployed using a combination of pods, deployments, and services (or micro-services).
    • Functionality: Kubernetes as a complex installation and setup process, but it not as limited as Docker Swarm.
    • Monitoring: It supports multiple versions of logging and monitoring when the services are deployed within the cluster (Elasticsearch/Kibana (ELK), Heapster/Grafana, Sysdig cloud integration).
    • Scalability: All-in-one framework for distributed systems.
    • Other Benefits: Kubernetes is backed by the Cloud Native Computing Foundation (CNCF), huge community among container orchestration tools, it is an open source and modular tool that works with any OS.
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    Tymoteusz Paul
    Devops guy at X20X Development LTD · | 23 upvotes · 8.9M views

    Often enough I have to explain my way of going about setting up a CI/CD pipeline with multiple deployment platforms. Since I am a bit tired of yapping the same every single time, I've decided to write it up and share with the world this way, and send people to read it instead ;). I will explain it on "live-example" of how the Rome got built, basing that current methodology exists only of readme.md and wishes of good luck (as it usually is ;)).

    It always starts with an app, whatever it may be and reading the readmes available while Vagrant and VirtualBox is installing and updating. Following that is the first hurdle to go over - convert all the instruction/scripts into Ansible playbook(s), and only stopping when doing a clear vagrant up or vagrant reload we will have a fully working environment. As our Vagrant environment is now functional, it's time to break it! This is the moment to look for how things can be done better (too rigid/too lose versioning? Sloppy environment setup?) and replace them with the right way to do stuff, one that won't bite us in the backside. This is the point, and the best opportunity, to upcycle the existing way of doing dev environment to produce a proper, production-grade product.

    I should probably digress here for a moment and explain why. I firmly believe that the way you deploy production is the same way you should deploy develop, shy of few debugging-friendly setting. This way you avoid the discrepancy between how production work vs how development works, which almost always causes major pains in the back of the neck, and with use of proper tools should mean no more work for the developers. That's why we start with Vagrant as developer boxes should be as easy as vagrant up, but the meat of our product lies in Ansible which will do meat of the work and can be applied to almost anything: AWS, bare metal, docker, LXC, in open net, behind vpn - you name it.

    We must also give proper consideration to monitoring and logging hoovering at this point. My generic answer here is to grab Elasticsearch, Kibana, and Logstash. While for different use cases there may be better solutions, this one is well battle-tested, performs reasonably and is very easy to scale both vertically (within some limits) and horizontally. Logstash rules are easy to write and are well supported in maintenance through Ansible, which as I've mentioned earlier, are at the very core of things, and creating triggers/reports and alerts based on Elastic and Kibana is generally a breeze, including some quite complex aggregations.

    If we are happy with the state of the Ansible it's time to move on and put all those roles and playbooks to work. Namely, we need something to manage our CI/CD pipelines. For me, the choice is obvious: TeamCity. It's modern, robust and unlike most of the light-weight alternatives, it's transparent. What I mean by that is that it doesn't tell you how to do things, doesn't limit your ways to deploy, or test, or package for that matter. Instead, it provides a developer-friendly and rich playground for your pipelines. You can do most the same with Jenkins, but it has a quite dated look and feel to it, while also missing some key functionality that must be brought in via plugins (like quality REST API which comes built-in with TeamCity). It also comes with all the common-handy plugins like Slack or Apache Maven integration.

    The exact flow between CI and CD varies too greatly from one application to another to describe, so I will outline a few rules that guide me in it: 1. Make build steps as small as possible. This way when something breaks, we know exactly where, without needing to dig and root around. 2. All security credentials besides development environment must be sources from individual Vault instances. Keys to those containers should exist only on the CI/CD box and accessible by a few people (the less the better). This is pretty self-explanatory, as anything besides dev may contain sensitive data and, at times, be public-facing. Because of that appropriate security must be present. TeamCity shines in this department with excellent secrets-management. 3. Every part of the build chain shall consume and produce artifacts. If it creates nothing, it likely shouldn't be its own build. This way if any issue shows up with any environment or version, all developer has to do it is grab appropriate artifacts to reproduce the issue locally. 4. Deployment builds should be directly tied to specific Git branches/tags. This enables much easier tracking of what caused an issue, including automated identifying and tagging the author (nothing like automated regression testing!).

    Speaking of deployments, I generally try to keep it simple but also with a close eye on the wallet. Because of that, I am more than happy with AWS or another cloud provider, but also constantly peeking at the loads and do we get the value of what we are paying for. Often enough the pattern of use is not constantly erratic, but rather has a firm baseline which could be migrated away from the cloud and into bare metal boxes. That is another part where this approach strongly triumphs over the common Docker and CircleCI setup, where you are very much tied in to use cloud providers and getting out is expensive. Here to embrace bare-metal hosting all you need is a help of some container-based self-hosting software, my personal preference is with Proxmox and LXC. Following that all you must write are ansible scripts to manage hardware of Proxmox, similar way as you do for Amazon EC2 (ansible supports both greatly) and you are good to go. One does not exclude another, quite the opposite, as they can live in great synergy and cut your costs dramatically (the heavier your base load, the bigger the savings) while providing production-grade resiliency.

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