Announcing the all new Cloud9 development environment!

By Ruben Daniels24 July 2014

We’re very excited to share the third generation of our cloud-based development environment with the world!

Today is a big day for all of us at Cloud9. For over a year we worked on a completely new version of our platform and editor. The result is an amazing cloud-based development environment that rivals legacy desktop IDEs on performance, feature set, and usability - and we hope you agree! The new version of Cloud9 is available now via our new website.

Third generation cloud-based development environment

We’re launching a fully revamped UI, new workspaces that are powered by Docker Ubuntu containers, browser compatibility testing features, lots of usability improvements, and many improvements to performance, reliability, collaboration features and language tooling. In this blog post we highlight the major changes, so read on!

Brand New UI

We listened to our users’ feedback, and we used our 3 years of cloud IDE development experience to build a new interface that balances ease of use with a rich feature set. It not only looks great, we made it work even better! It’s fully configurable: simply drag any file or Terminal tab around to create as many split views as you like in any direction, change your key bindings so you don't have to learn a new set of keystrokes, and enable/disable every part of the UI to your liking. See the screenshot below for part of the new UI and just one of the many ways to configure the layout.

Workspaces

Our new workspaces are powered by Docker Ubuntu containers. Every workspace is a fully self-contained VM, so you can run any development stack (e.g. a WordPress website and a Node.js web app) in parallel without running into configuration issues. Each workspace gives you full freedom over your environment, including sudo rights, so any development stack can be set up, built, and run without any hassle. It’s already packed with commonly-used packages like mysql, ruby, and apache. Simply use sudo apt-get to install any additional packages!

With the new workspaces, you don’t need to waste valuable development time on system configuration and maintenance; setting up a fully configured environment is done in seconds, and Cloud9 handles the maintenance. This makes on-boarding new team members a matter of minutes instead of days or weeks.

Collaboration

The improved collaboration features let you create, share and configure your apps in real time with anyone around the world. There’s an immediate visual overview of who edited what and when. Workspaces can be shared with your colleagues, and sharing a preview of your work with customers is as easy as sharing a link. The new sharing dialog enables fine-grained configuration of who can access which part of the platform. This way, if you’re working in a remote team, you can easily work together on code, and the overhead of helping each other is minimized to nothing.

Performance & reliability

The new generation of Cloud9 is optimized for performance, making the UI smooth and responsive. The editor handles hundreds of thousands of lines of code and navigating through large projects is instantaneous. Our recent move to Google Compute Engine also enabled major speed improvements by geo-locating our servers in the US, Europe and Asia.

Language tooling

The language tools now support over 40 languages with A-class support for PHP, Ruby, Python, Javascript and Go. Code completion is everywhere now. We report errors as you type in more languages than ever before. A new Outline view shows an overview of your code and can be used to quickly jump to any definition in the current file. Just type a few letters from its name. Or you can now press and hold Control (Command on OSX) and click on a name to jump to a definition from the editor.

Feedback from our users

Don’t just take our word for it. We’ve done an extensive Beta period where a first group of users battle-tested the new Cloud9 (thanks all!); below are some of the responses we got from them.

"I really believe in Cloud9. It lets our team move MUCH faster. Thanks again for making the dev & testing extremely easy, letting our dispersed team deploy new features quicker than ever before." - Josh Wentz, developer at a US Dept of Energy Innovation Hub with researchers from several universities

"The new C9 takes things to a whole new level. It is quick, slick intuitive, more reliable and with Chrome in full screen mode, almost indistinguishable from a desktop application." - Lance Edusei, independent Web Application Developer

"We use Cloud9 to develop our main application that helps landlords rent out their properties. It's great to keep your workspace in the cloud so it doesn't matter which machine you are working from, everything will be as you left it and customized to your preferences. One thing that I really loved was the console, also the editor itself is a pleasure to use and so smooth." - Ryan Harkins, Head of Technology at Rentify

(Though really, try it out for yourself!)

What will the future bring?

We have put a lot of sweat into this release and can’t wait to improve the new Cloud9 day by day. You can look forward to regular releases and we would love to get your honest feedback - only through that we can really improve. We're also still very committed to the open source community, so expect an update of the open source version of Cloud9 soon! And of course, it would be great to meet you, so whenever you see us at tech-conferences, or are in San Francisco or Amsterdam, please get in touch!

For more news on Cloud9’s developments, follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and on our blog.

Try it now

The new version of Cloud9 is available now via our new website at https://c9.io. There’s both a premium and a free plan, so give it a try!

We hope you enjoy the new version of Cloud9, and we look forward to your feedback.

Happy coding!

The Cloud9 team

P.S. We’re hiring!

We’re looking for senior engineers (javascript/node.js/all-round) to join our team in Amsterdam - if you’re interested in working on the future of development drop us a line!

Members of the press: please have a look at our Press page.

Ruben Daniels

Read more posts by Ruben Daniels.