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What is PyCharm?

PyCharm is nothing but a Python Integrated Development Environment (IDE). PyCharm has many vital features, such as an intelligent code editor, code completion, code navigation, tester and debugger, refactorings, and many more. All these features, along with developer and scientific tools, accelerate software development. This blog covers the importance of PyCharm, its various features, and the pros and cons in greater detail. Of course! All you need to know about PyCharm, you can find in the way ahead.

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We all know that time waits for nobody. It is just ticking constantly. Whatever we do, we must do it as fast as possible without compromising quality. When it comes to software development, this truth is highly valued since developers always aim to develop high-quality applications in a reasonable time. Know that IDE is the best platform that helps developers to speed up their coding and debugging process by providing robust features, tools, and libraries. Not only that, it smoothly integrates with various databases and other tools.

This way, PyCharm is one of the IDEs developed by JetBrains, which plays a pivotal role in Python software development. PyCharm is an all-in-one platform that provides vital features such as intelligent code completion, visual debugger, code editor, code navigation, and so on.

This blog will help you to understand more about PyCharm. Before diving deep into the blog, we will look at IDE and its importance at a glance.

Table of Contents: What is Pycharm

What is PyCharm?

Now, it’s time to move on to PyCharm. First, we will know what PyCharm is.

PyCharm is nothing but a Python Integrated Development Environment. Also, it is a cross-platform that supports running codes in different platforms such as Windows, Linux, and macOS.

With PyCharm, you can effortlessly develop and run Python codes and debug errors in one place. This is because PyCharm provides the necessary packages, modules, and tools for developers. For example, it offers tools such as an integrated unit tester, a graphical debugger, a version control system, and many more.

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Why PyCharm?

No doubt, PyCharm is one of the crucial platforms for software development. Here are the reasons to consider:

  • PyCharm uses a keyboard-centric approach, which accelerates coding for software
  • At best, it allows for building high-quality Python codes intelligently with the help of intelligent coding, inspections, refactoring, and so on.
  • PyCharm offers a development platform with customisable color schemes.
  • It supports managing applications in remote hosts as well as virtual machines by using the tool – remote interpreter.
  • You can directly access various databases without the help of any other tool.
  • Not just Python, PyCharm allows the creation of codes in other languages such as CSS, HTML, and JavaScript.
  • You can customise the User Interface (UI) of PyCharm using plugins.

What is IDE?

Integrated Development Environment (IDE) is an editor and compiler in its basic form. IDE helps developers to optimize writing, editing, and debugging codes. Also, it supports automation to simplify repeatable tasks. Using IDE's automation capabilities, developers can package binary code, compile source code into binary, and execute automated tests.

Every IDE offers developers many excellent features to ease software development. For example, IDEs provide auto-completion, syntax highlighting with colors, and so on. Even developers can check bugs on the go while writing codes. IDEs change code colors based on right and wrong keywords. Also, it uses different colors to distinguish methods and classes.

Every IDE has two main components – a text editor and a project editor. With the text editor, you can write and edit codes. Another one, the project editor, helps to store all files associated with the project.

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Why IDE?

 As you know, IDE simplifies software development. Do you want to know the reasons behind this? Here are they:

  • When developers make coding errors, IDE alerts them with suggestions and warnings.
  • The features of the IDE platform improve the efficiency of coding and debugging.
  • IDEs provide intelligent code completion as well as automated code generation. So, you don't need to type all the characters of codes.
  • With the right tools and workflows, IDE eases software installation, saving time and speeding up the development process.

Who uses PyCharm?

 Many famous companies use PyCharm to develop their software. Twitter, Amazon, Facebook, Pinterest, Shelf, Udemy, Powercloud, Trivago, and Birdview are a few companies that use PyCharm for software development.

Features of PyCharm

PyCharm comes with a lot of wonderful features that simplify Python software development as well as other software.

Features of Pycharm

Let’s discuss them in detail in the following one by one.

  • Intelligent Code Editor

Know that PyCharm is a robust platform that allows smart coding with the help of the intelligent code editor. This editor is not only used to code high-quality python scripts but also supports to code JavaScript, TypeScript, CoffeeScript, CSS, etc

Pycharm Code Editor

  • Syntax Highlighting

PyCharm offers customisable color themes to read codes in the editor easily. It is available for Python codes as well as Django templates. PyCharm allows the selection of desired color themes from the predefined list.

  • Smart Code Completion

PyCharm supports intelligent code completion for keywords, variables, classes, etc. Also, the editor provides context-based suggestions and suitable options. This feature eliminates the need to type full characters of codes. As a result, you can drive the coding process faster.

  • Smart Navigation

Be it a UI element, source code, file, or folder, PyCharm offers an easy smart code navigation feature to find the elements effortlessly. With intelligent navigation, you can find any symbol, function, or tool Window in no time. Additionally, you can find methods, classes, and fields in codes by using this feature.

What’s more! PyCharm provides a lens mode to find code errors and error messages. It allows using bookmarks in the codes and configuring search scopes based on the needs.

  • Refactorings

PyCharm allows refactoring codes with the help of intelligent methods such as rename and move, introduce variable, extract method, etc. You can apply the ‘rename and move’ method to restructure files, classes, functions, parameters, properties, and variables. Similarly, you can apply the ‘extract method’ to break extensive methods into simple ones. Besides, you can use refactorings to create top-level functions, change signatures, and many more.

  • Visual Debugger

The inline debugger of PyCharm allows viewing the debugging process in the editor instantly. With a visual debugger, you can view the variables in codes near their usages and set breakpoints in the editor. Moreover, the debugger skips library files and bugs your codes only.

  • Developer Tools

PyCharm comes with a collection of powerful tools – out of the box. The tools include a GUI-based integrated debugger, Database tools, Python Profiler, Remote interpreters, and many more.

Using the database tools, you can seamlessly access databases such as Oracle, PostgreSQL, SQL Server, and MySQL from PyCharm.

  • Web Development Frameworks

PyCharm supports popular web development frameworks such as Python, CoffeeScript, JavaScript, Typescript, SQL, HTML/CSS, Cython, Node.JS, Angular JS, etc. No wonder PyCharm supports modern frameworks such as Django, Google App Engine, Flask, Web2py, Pyramid, etc.

Another thing is, PyCharm offers a live editing preview that supports opening a page in the smart code editor and web browser at a time. It allows seeing the changes you make in codes on the editor and browser.

  • Integration with Tools and Libraries

Importantly, PyCharm offers more than 50+ plugins. These plugins help to integrate with a variety of tools and frameworks.

PyCharm integrates with tools such as Anaconda, Kite, IPython, Waka time, Pylint, etc., and empowers software development. For example, PyCharm integrates with the IPython Notebook. Because of this, it creates an interactive Python Console. This console supports matching braces and quotes, syntax checks, and course code completion. It also allows using many scientific libraries such as Pandas, NumPy, Matplotlib, etc.      

[ Related Article: What is Anaconda Navigator ]

What are PyCharm Scratch Files and PyCharm Buffers?

Know that scratch files and PyCharm buffers are temporary files where you can make drafts that are not in your project scope.

Let’s look at them in brief below.

Scratch Files

Scratch files are basically functional files. No doubt we can run and debug these files like PyCharm files. Scratch files can be written in Kotlin, Java, and HTML languages. Not just that, we can change the language of scratch files. For example, we can easily convert text files into HTML files.

We can use the scratch file when we need to draft codes that are not associated with our project. In other words, we can build and run scratch files separately. It avoids switching to another application. Scratch files also support code completion, syntax highlighting, and other vital features of PyCharm.

It is essential to note that Scratch files are not stored in our project directory. But we can open these files whenever we need even though we are working on a project. We can quickly move any scratch file into any project with simple drag-and-drop options. After that, the file will no longer exist in the scratch file directory. 

Scratch Buffers

Scratch buffers are yet another file, but they are plain text files. They are used to make quick notes and a To-Do list. We can easily change the language of a scratch buffer in the same way we make it in scratch files. 

What is PyCharm Indexing?

Essentially, indexing is nothing but a process of organizing data based on a specific schema or plan. It helps to retrieve data quickly.

Indexing begins in different scenarios. Let’s know what the scenarios are below:

  • While opening a project
  • While switching between branches in codes
  • Once loading and unloading plugins
  • Once updating a large volume of external files

Typically, indexing creates a virtual mapping of classes, methods, objects, and other code elements involved in developing applications. As a result, it simplifies coding assistance, code completion, search, and navigation.

 A simple but essential note is that indexing time depends on the project size. In other words, when the project has more files, indexing time increases. If you want to speed up indexing, you need to exclude some files as well as folders. By doing so, you can allow the excluded files to continue as part of your project. But they don't support code completion, inspections, navigation, and other features.

Advantages of PyCharm

Undoubtedly, PyCharm provides a lot of advantages to developers. Here is the list:

  • You can make a quick installation.
  • It is an easy-to-use tool that supports quick code development
  • It allows running pieces of code separately and making bug-fixing on the fly
  • You can view the entire Python code in a single view
  • It has an excellent array of plugins and other integration tools
  • It offers more fantastic community support
  • It allows importing libraries
  • It allows accessing multiple databases

Disadvantages of PyCharm

PyCharm comes with a few drawbacks too. Let’s see the list below.

  • The PyCharm commercial version is costly.
  • For beginners, it is not a favorite tool.
  • It is a resource-intensive tool since it consumes more memory
  • Loading time is slow in PyCharm


To wrap this up, PyCharm is one of the best IDEs for Python development. Not only Python, but it supports other languages too. The features offered by PyCharm, such as intelligent code editor, smart code completion, and refactorings, simplify but simultaneously boost the speed of software development. Remember, PyCharm integrates with all popular frameworks and tools and supports building robust software ultimately.

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Last updated: 04 Apr 2023
About Author


Madhuri is a Senior Content Creator at MindMajix. She has written about a range of different topics on various technologies, which include, Splunk, Tensorflow, Selenium, and CEH. She spends most of her time researching on technology, and startups. Connect with her via LinkedIn and Twitter .

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