5 Dreamweaver Alternatives You Should Know About

In 1997, Macromedia published the first version of Dreamweaver exclusively for the Apple operating system Mac OS 8. It was not until almost 3 months later – with version 1.2 – that support for Microsoft Windows systems was implemented. 10 years later, the software company Adobe took over the web development software and added it to its Creative Suite (which has since been superseded by the Creative Cloud ) as a replacement for the GoLive editor it had previously included. Who the very extensive application for creating and designing responsive web applicationswould like to use, must either take out the individual product subscription offered or rent the complete Creative Cloud package, which is why professional users primarily work with the software dreamweaver software crack.

This guide explains briefly the special features of the Adobe program before it then presents interesting, mostly free alternatives to Dreamweaver.

This is what defines Adobe Dreamweaver

Dreamweaver scores with its typical Adobe interface, which is well known to users of Photoshop, InDesign, Illustrator and Co. The range of functions of the HTML editor, which presents itself as the measure of all things when it comes to WYSIWYG , has grown significantly, especially since the release of the Creative Cloud, which makes writing code child’s play. For example, it is possible to review all changes in real time without having to reload the page, or to edit CSS code directly within the HTML file thanks to an inline editor. The implemented coding engine also helpsin the process of writing clean code by automatically completing snippets with Emmet support, generating automatic indentations, and color- coding elements that belong together . In addition, Dreamweaver offers the following features:

  • Code validation
  • Support of CSS preprocessors ( Sass , Less )
  • Support of PHP (from PHP 5.4)
  • Multiple cursors for writing and editing different lines of code at the same time
  • Integrated CSS framework Bootstrap for responsive web design
  • Access to royalty-free images and vector graphics from Adobe Stock
  • Easy access to your own graphics, designs and other assets via the Creative Cloud
  • creative suite software crack

What are the free Dreamweaver alternatives?

Anyone who has access to all of the Creative Cloud products and who has tried and tested Dreamweaver will not do much wrong with Adobe software. For developers on a budget, however, there are good Dreamweaver alternatives that are free to use. We present 5 interesting representatives to you in the following sections. On the one hand, it is about presenting their features and special features . On the other hand, the differences and similarities to Adobe’s software should also be highlighted and the usability of the various tools examined.

BlueGriffon

The Composer / Nvu successor BlueGriffon from Disruptive Innovations uses the Gecko rendering engine, which is written in C ++ and is used in the Firefox web browser, as the basis for the implemented WYSIWYG editor. This makes it possible to create and edit HTML4 , HTML5 and XHTML pages, which you can examine in a preview version during the creation process. The user interface is available in 20 languages, including German, Spanish, English and French. BlueGriffon runs on newer Windows (from 7) and macOS systems (from 10.8) and – in contrast to Dreamweaver – also under the Linux distribution Ubuntu (from 16.04). The web editor also has the following features:

  • Easy integration of HTML5 forms, videos and audio files
  • CSS editor (enables 2D and 3D transformation techniques)
  • SVG editor
  • Font manager for FontSquirrel and Google Fonts
  • Syntax highlighting and auto-completion
  • Modifiable menu bars and keyboard shortcuts
  • Accessibility thanks to ARIA (Accessible Rich Internet Applications)
BlueGriffon user interface
Appearance of the user interface of BlueGriffon

In addition to these functions, which you can use free of charge in the freeware version of BlueGriffon, there are a number of first-class additional components that you receive by purchasing a one-time fee-based license: Among other things, the purchased version contains an improved CSS editor including visual CSS Selector editor, a toolkit manager for inserting multiple JavaScript and CSS files with just a single click, and access to over 2,500 ready-to-use templates . The open source components of BlueGriffon can be found on GitHub or alternatively on the official homepage . You can also purchase the paid license on the latter if you are interested in the additional features.

benefitsdisadvantage
✔ Proficient in HTML5✘ Lack of support for PHP
✔ Own SVG editor✘ Complex user interface
✔ High compatibility 
✔ Many extensions available 

KompoZer

The web development software KompoZer also emerged from the Mozilla project Nvu and is therefore also based on the Gecko engine . At first KompoZer was concerned with small optimizations of the Nvu software, until the program finally came as an independent web editor under the free licenses GNU GPL ( GNU General Public License ), GNU LGPL ( GNU Lesser General Public License ) and MPL ( Mozilla Public License ) has been published. The team from the Mozilla environment stopped the further development in 2010, but the software is on all common Windows and macOS systems as well as Ubuntu(from version 14.04) can be used. There are now over 20 different language packages for KompoZer – including German, English, French, Italian and Spanish.

Even if KompoZer is not one of the Dreamweaver alternatives that can keep up with the Adobe program in terms of functionality and complexity, the open source application still offers its users a few features that can be used to create professionally designed websites:

  • Powerful WYSWYG editor that allows easy switching between code and preview
  • Integrated CSS editor including import function for existing stylesheets
  • Customizable menu bars
  • Spell checking and syntax highlighting
  • Tabs for editing multiple pages at the same time
  • Form wizard
  • Integrated markup cleaner that checks your projects for W3C conformity
  • FTP page manager including drag-and-drop function for media files such as images
KompoZer user interface
KompoZer: Source code view of an HTML sample page

In addition, there are a handful of useful extensions for the program – such as a link checker, which you can use to check the validity of integrated links . As a possible Adobe Dreamweaver alternative, KompoZer still lacks support for PHP and support for newer web standards such as CSS3 and HTML5. All download versions for the various platforms as well as detailed documentation can be found on the official project website . There you also have the opportunity to report detected bugs or to submit suggestions for new functions.

benefitsdisadvantage
✔ Fast working WYSIWYG editor with preview function✘ Lack of support for PHP
✔ Available in over 20 languages✘ Further development stopped
✔ Program files are only a few MB✘ Does not support modern standards like HTML5 or CSS3

Brackets

Brackets are an open source alternative to Dreamweaver, which Adobe launched itself as a community project in 2011. The official GitHub repository now contains more than 5500 forks of the MIT-licensed software , which is based on HTML, CSS and JavaScript. The web editor is available for Windows and Mac as well as for Linux (Ubuntu and Debian ), although the Linux variants do not offer the full range of functions. Brackets runs on the basis of the JavaScript runtime environment Node.js and can be expanded with numerous extensions – including a WYSIWYG editor, which is not included in the standard version.

In the Dreamweaver alternative, you don’t see your code previewed directly in the program by default. However, you have the option of viewing the preliminary result of your web project in Google Chrome at any time . To do this, however, you must first install the Internet browser as well. The developers of brackets for the modern web editor highlight three elementary features:

  • Fast editing : Brackets offers the perfect platform for writing code. You open the program and just get started right away. You don’t have to switch back and forth between different files for HTML, CSS and JavaScript, but simply use integrated editors for style sheets and scripts directly in the HTML document . You select the desired element and then use specific shortcuts to open the mentioned editing masks.
  • Live preview : If you use the preview function with Chrome, Brackets automatically sends all changes to the HTML and CSS code to it in real time , so that you can immediately check whether they are working as desired. Adjustments to JavaScript applications have not yet been integrated into the live preview, but a corresponding function is planned according to the manufacturer. It is currently already possible to see JavaScript modifications in the browser preview by saving the Brackets project beforehand.
  • Support of preprocessors : Code editing in the free alternative to Dreamweaver is not only characterized by high speed, but also by the possibility of using Less and SCSS files – thanks to the support of the CSS preprocessors Less and Sass . With its simplified syntax, which Brackets also knows how to use, you can write and edit your style sheets even faster.
Section of the bracket interface
View CSS code in Adobe Brackets

Brackets benefits from the expandability already mentioned, primarily due to the great commitment of the community – new plug-ins appear almost every week . The W3C validator , the Emmet plug-in and Beautify , a tool for optimizing HTML, JavaScript and CSS code, are particularly popular . The simple and versatile expansion option of the development platform makes Brackets one of the best Dreamweaver alternatives without a doubt.

benefitsdisadvantage
✔ Permanent further development by the community✘ Lack of support for PHP
✔ Support of CSS preprocessors✘ Limited functions in the Linux versions
✔ Inline editors for CSS and JavaScript✘ WYSIWYG interface only available as an extension

Aptana Studio

Aptana Studio is the free, integrated development environment from Aptana Inc. The platform is based on the Java tool Eclipse and supports JavaScript, HTML5 and CSS3 as well as various programming languages ​​such as PHP, Python and Ruby . Furthermore, Ajax libraries such as jQuery, Prototype or script.aculo.us can be integrated directly into the application and thus used for the development process. The Dreamweaver alternative is available as a stand-alone version for Windows (from XP), Linux (from Ubuntu 9.04 / Fedora 12) and macOS (from OS X 10.5) and as an Eclipse plug-in (at least Eclipse 3.6). The development team distributes Aptana Studio under a dual license model: Users can either choose a combination of a GNU GPL license and Aptana GPL exception or alternatively the Aptana Public License (APL).

In addition to the broad support of programming languages ​​and platforms, the web editor has the following core features:

  • Code wizard : The code wizard gives suggestions for possible arguments, properties or methods and also shows the support of any HTML, CSS and JavaScript elements of your web project in common internet browsers.
  • Integrated debuggers : JavaScript and Ruby-on-Rails debuggers are already implemented and help to detect and correct errors in your web application.
  • Deployment wizard : With the deployment wizard , Aptana Studio offers a tool that helps you upload, download and synchronize your web project files via FTP, SFTP and FTPS.
  • Version control : You can easily link your web project with Git and thus ensure safe, joint work on the source code, as is possible online at GitHub.
  • Integrated command line tool : Thanks to the built-in terminal, you can execute system commands directly in Aptana Studio.
  • Flexible development environment : You can freely configure Aptana Studio according to your wishes and expand the basic options with scripts for standard commands and provide them with shortcuts in order to achieve optimal usability.
Aptana Studio visual interface
Aptana Studio interface: source code view

Thanks to the close connection with Eclipse, the free alternative to Dreamweaver also offers its basic functions. This includes visual syntax highlighting, intelligent code completion or the automatic closing of open tags. In addition, Aptana Studio supports the latest web standards such as HTML5 . Installation files for all platforms and the Eclipse plug-in can be found on the official homepage . The source code of the core components and various plug-ins for the web editor are available for download on GitHub .

benefitsdisadvantage
✔ Support of various programming languages ​​such as Perl, Python, PHP and Ruby✘ Numerous dependencies, including on Java, Git and Eclipse (in the plug-in version)
✔ Version control using Git✘ No own German language package
✔ Support of the latest web technologies✘ Installation only works with installed Node.js, which Aptana does not point out
 ✘ User interface very complex

atom

GitHub, the hosting service for development projects of all kinds, released its very own version of a web editor in 2014 under the name Atom. The cross-platform framework Electron (formerly Atom Core), which combines the Chromium browser with the JavaScript runtime environment Node.js and also bears the signature of the GitHub developers, acts as the basis . After initially only expansions and packages were released under an open source license, GitHub ultimately decided to also use the source code of the entire project, including all standard “packages”, as the editor’s function modules are called, under the MIT license to release. The functions of the web editor are via individual JavaScript APIsThe developers recommend using CoffeeScript instead of JavaScript. For CSS content, the simplified style sheet language Less is the default in Atom.

Thanks to the appropriate plug-ins, the web editor supports not only the latest standards of HTML, CSS and JavaScript or CoffeeScript, but also various programming languages such as PHP, Ruby, Java, C, C ++, Python and Perl. The many features of the free alternative to Dreamweaver include the following:

  • Integrated package manager : Atom has its own package manager apm (Atom Package Manager), which makes the integration and installation of packages child’s play.
  • Auto-completion : Depending on which programming language you are currently working with, Atom offers suggestions for how to complete the code as you write. You can then apply these recommendations with just one press of a button. You can also expand the pool of possible suggestions with your own code snippets.
  • Syntax highlighting : For installed programming languages, the Dreamweaver alternative provides syntax highlighting for the most important rules. These are automatically highlighted in color if you want to make use of this option.
  • Version management : As expected, Atom implemented the Git version control tool as a GitHub application, which helps you keep track of changes to your web project. For example, you can set the editor so that lines that have changed are visually highlighted.
  • File system browser : Thanks to the file system browser, you can easily search for and open individual files, a complete project or even several projects in a single window.
  • Command Palette : With a simple key combination you call up a search mask with which you can find available commands and access them easily.
Atom web editor menu
Atom user interface: Settings menu and HTML editor

In addition to the high level of user comfort, which considerably simplifies coding, it is above all the expandability that makes the modular web editor a very good Dreamweaver alternative. Over 90 packages and 13 UI themes (as of December 2016) already give the standard installation a wide range of functions, including the excellent language compatibility mentioned. If you miss a feature, it is worth taking a look at the extensions directory on the Atom homepage : Here you have access to thousands of other packages and themes that have been developed and published by the committed community. Among other things, you will also find, for example, a package that adds a live preview function to the web editor Your HTML code added.

The two core packages metrics and exception reporting are under discussion. The former transmits data to Google Analytics, the latter forwards unusual program processes (crashes, errors, etc.) to the Atom development team via bugsnag.com. Even if both packages are only intended to improve the Atom software, it is recommended to deactivate them in the settings. Unfortunately, the Dreamweaver alternative does not yet have a German-language user interface. You can download current and older versions of the GitHub program, which runs on Windows, macOS and Linux (64-bit Ubuntu, Debian, Fedora), from the official homepage or from the GitHub directory.

benefitsdisadvantage
✔ Highly expandable✘ No German-language interface
✔ Integrated solutions for package management and version control✘ Questionable (albeit deactivatable) standard packages for data collection
✔ Great language support (including PHP, HTML, CSS, JavaScript, Java, JSON, SQL) 

The best Dreamweaver alternatives from the open source area: Conclusion

Adobe Dreamweaver offers programming beginners a comprehensive complete package for developing websites, which, thanks to its numerous features and direct connection to the Creative Cloud, undoubtedly offers everything you need to create a successful and artistically designed website . However, this is also associated with a high level of complexity and continuous costs. In addition, the Adobe software is not exactly considered a resource-saving solution. Experienced developers, however, usually rely on editors who offer them greater freedom.

The open source alternatives to Dreamweaver presented in this guide represent a middle ground between the modular principle of the Adobe program and bare programming with the help of a normal text editor. The reason for this is mainly the freely available program code that makes the Open -Source web editors are given their great flexibility. You can use a program like Atom either as a minimalist editor with syntax highlighting and code completion or as a full-fledged adobe dreamweaver cc crack development environment that is only in a few ways inferior to the commercial Dreamweaver.

On the other hand, you cannot assume a stability similar to that promised by the Adobe product with the free solutions. Professional software such as Dreamweaver is constantly being further developed , consequently also has the latest web standards ready and often – as in the case of Dreamweaver – represents an all-round carefree package that has matured over decades. Should problems arise with the software or do you need help Competent support is available for your project, and this is also offered by some open source representatives such as BlueGriffon (for a fee). With the free solutions, you are dependent on the help of the community – regardless of whether it is about technical difficulties with the program or about the general advancement goes.