5 Best PHP Tools for Web Development in 2020

July 10th, 2020 . 6 minutes read
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PHP or Personal Home Page is a customary tenacity, a server-dependent script language that helps to encompass a web server that’s intended to make useful pages and apps. It is the most recommended programming language by experts for developing Websites and Web Applications.

A large community of people already exists who use this open-source server-side language for their web development needs. It comes packed with multiple specialties and features with utilizing PHP programming assistance. The IDE or integrated development environment is a programmer’s clear field.

Every tool is different, and some may be more suited for different projects than for others. However, some IDEs are revered over others. Following, you will find a list of IDEs that are considered to be the best to work with. But, before you learn more about these PHP tools for web development, you should take a look at why they are useful.

Top PHP Tools for Web Development

As PHP development tools have been around for some time, developers have had a chance to experiment with them. By using most of these tools and seeing how they perform, there are some tools that developers would recommend over the other.

While a lot of this is based on personal opinion, most would agree that some tools offer better speed while others may offer better features. However, in 2020, if you are looking to invest in PHP development tools, these are the ones you should consider.

Eclipse PDT

Eclipse IDE is an extremely utilized PHP Development tool. It is another open-source inclination without instantly having a much higher cost. It has a strong association of developers running on all different sorts of requisites and plugins to allow Eclipse with characteristics that any

When you use Eclipse PDT, it can be a bit tricky to get started, especially if you have not been following Eclipse for a long time. But this tool wins out over most others since it does not require an IDE license.

Hence, you can save a lot of money when it comes to acquiring a license for this product. It also offers most facilities that traditional PHP tools for Web App development do, such as code debugging, refactoring, syntax validation, code formatting, code navigation, code assist, code template, and PHP debugging.

It must be mentioned that several people may complain that this tool may perform inferior when compared to other business-related PHP tools. However, when you use a laptop with a fast system configuration, the lagging issue can be easily resolved.

Zend Studio

Zend Studio is one of the best PHP development tools available in the market, created and maintained by a company named Zend. It is prevalent because of its optimal functionality and performance on any platform.

It works on Windows, Linux, and macOS platforms. Zend Studio integrates Xdebug, X-ray, and Zend Debugger with PHP 7 to ensure seamless performance. Most developers prefer it due to its seamlessness, efficiency, and optimal speed.

You can use it not just with PHP but with JavaScript, C++, C#, and more. Eclipse offers several extensions or this tool as well. So, if you wish to extend this tool and include more fun features than it already offers, you can take the help of Eclipse.

Zend Studio is the perfect choice for those who are looking for a faster, comprehensive, and feature-rich web development tool. It can deploy apps over a number of interfaces, including cloud servers. With a flawless integrated UI, it is easy to understand the features, and the work of development can be done with simplicity and a faster pace. 


NetBeans is a widely used PHP IDE for everything; it is assigned as sharp, precise. At first of its release, the code had to be written only in JAVA programming language, which was later updated to PHP. In fact, the free version of this tool has been around since 2010. While it was considered to be a leggy tool that could only be used for JavaScript, it has had a huge reformation in recent years.

Not only it is efficient, but feature-packed as and comes with support for various languages namely English, Russian, Portuguese, Brazilian, Chinese, and Japanese. It works well with open source PHP development frameworks, such as CakePHP, Zend, FuelPHP, Symfony 2, as well as Smarty.

You will also find extensive support for Content Management Software (CMS) in NetBeans. One can easily use it for PHP blogs or websites based on CMS.

After the release, it created a significant impact on the open-source web app development industry and have created one of the most prominent associations of developers.


Developed by JetBrains, this tool is considered to be the best IDE for PHP Web App Developers. Equipped with the latest features, it supports rapid web development and offers ease of use like never before.

It is compatible with key frameworks such as Yii, Laravel, CakePHP, Symfony, and more. Front-end technologies are crucial when it comes to web development, and for this reason, PHPStorm supports live editing of these technologies.

With PHPStorm, you can work with Java, CSS, HTML5, TypeScript, CoffeeScript, JavaScript, and more. Not only you can perform code refactoring, but also live debugging and test out different units as well. Additionally, it works well with the top CMS such as WordPress, Magento, and Drupal.

PHPStorm tool is lightweight and works smoothly, which is highly appreciated by all web developers. While this program is mostly targeted towards specialized developers, it is, however, offered for free to students and teachers so as to facilitate learning as well as boost open source projects for the app. Most top companies, such as Yahoo, Wikipedia, and more, have acquired the IDE license for PHPStorm.

NuSphere –

NuSphere is another development environment that is enthusiastic about producing the best tools of PHP outputs to rise up web and app development association relationship, and it is the IDE they ought to recommend. This is considered to be the most robust tool that a developer can employ for their needs.

In calculating up, NuSphere IDE is a full compact stack of web and app development tools that begin full with assistance for debugging with JavaScript, pre-processing with LESS and CSS, HTML5 and everything of PHP.

If you have a complex project in mind, NuSphere IDE will be the perfect fit for the job. It can work with some popular PHP frameworks such a Yii, Laravel, and Zend. It also supports languages such as JavaScript, CSS3, and HTML5.

It comes with the unique ability of parallel debugging; PHPexpress which speeds up the whole development process of the project of any apps or websites and also has support for extensions and plugins.

The combined characteristic with the several current versions is the ability to drive unit analyses for respectively local and foreign projects. It is available for most of the platforms out there, including Windows, Linux, Mac OS X, and others.


Most of the PHP tools incorporated in this article appear with distinct characteristics, but the common purpose is producing acceleration into web advancement with adaptable and comparatively more straightforward code.

Each of the tools cultivated here is wholly crammed with exceptional characteristics and abilities that grant developing PHP websites and apps instantly & effortlessly.

While these are the best of the lot, these are not the only tools offered on the market. You can check out other PHP development tools that may be able to suit your needs better. PHP development tools come with a huge range of features. Thus, you are bound to find a tool that will be able to best fit your project and your needs.

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Author: Habilelabs