An IDE (Integrated Development Environment) refers to a complete software development environment, where, all those packages that come as external plug-ins in Text-Editors, are already integrated within the software. An IDE is usually optimized towards a specific set of languages. For example it is very common for IDEs to advertise themselves towards either compiled or interpreted languages, or even towards a single language, or depending on the application developed, like scientific or web development. IDEs are recommended for beginner programmers, since it is possible to start coding with minimum effort after installation. However, it is quite common, in professional environments, individual developers and teams alike, to choose an IDE for large projects because of some unique features that they may offer over a Text-Editor.
A list of popular IDEs that provide good Fortran support is provided in alphabetical order:
AbsoftTools: commercial product, cross-platform, comes with Absoft’s own Fortran compiler.
Code::Blocks: free product, cross-platform and supports multiple compilers. Plenty of tutorials online on how to install it and add a Fortran Compiler. As well as a recent presentation, here, of its capabilities and future prospects at the International Fortran Conference 2020 by its main developer.
Eclipse-Photran Photran is an IDE and refactoring tool for Fortran based on Eclipse and the C/C++ Development Tools. A free product, cross-platform and supports multiple compilers.
Geany: a free product, cross platform and supports multiple compilers.
NAG Fortran Builder is a commercial product, available in Windows and MacOS and supports NAG’s own Fortran Compiler.
Plato is a commercial product, cross-platform, comes with Silverfrost’s Fortran FTN95 own Fortran compiler.
SimplyFortran is a commercial product, cross-platform with support of the GNU Fortran compiler.
Visual Studio its Community Edition 2019 is a free product, available in Windows and macOS and supports only Intel’s Fortran compiler, now bundled with many other free-to-use HPC tools under Intel oneAPI.