Komodo IDE vs. Eclipse for Perl development

I've been using Komodo for over 5 years, and I began seriously using Eclipse on 2009-Jul-06. Both are multi-language IDEs, but my focus is on Perl (Komodo doesn't do Java). Here's how their feature sets stack up.

Komodo IDE 5.1.4 Eclipse 3.5.0 (Galileo) with EPIC 0.6.4
Development active Eclipse: very active
EPIC: low activity, no roadmap
Startup time 8 seconds 6 seconds
Editing speed Komodo 5 slower than 4, due to history feature1 fast
Rearrange panels/views hell no oh yeah: resize, move, maximize, minimize, restore, detach/float
Plugins yes automatic installation, loosely-coupled installation
Perl support built-in Plugins: EPIC (freeware, tested for this comparison), Perlipse (freeware, not tested), Pedeto (200 €, not tested)
Subversion integration built-in Plugins: Subversive, Subclipse (not tested)
Spell checking ? built-in; the EPIC plugin doesn't support it
Remote editing built-in (S)FTP, SCP, FTPS via SSH with the RSE plugin
Auto-detection of remote file change only on save instant
As-you-type syntax check yes, with OK/fail status indicator (bottom) yes, with OK/fail status indicator (top right), but frequent leftover error squiggles after having corrected the error
Syntax check of remote files yes, with local interpreter apparently not
Syntax check with remote interpreter no no
Template::Toolkit support built-in not yet available
Debugging (Perl)
Local debugging speed 0.5s delay on basic step over instant
Remote debugging yes, tested with Catalyst and PHP EPIC - experimental; not with Perl 5.10 on Vista; to test
Watch expressions yes no, but can evaluate expressions as a workaround
Change variable value yes? no
F10 to Step Over2 no yes
Conditional breakpoints yes: expression, when variable changed, when/after function is called, when exception occurs no


While Eclipse itself is great, open-source, and way more powerful than Komodo IDE, its EPIC Perl plugin makes debugging painful at times. If you've never even used an IDE to debug Perl before, go for Eclipse. If you've been using Komodo's powerful debugging features, stay with it for now.


  1. Komodo 5 (both IDE and Edit) have a persistent history feature that stores your every location in the files you're editing. That means that each search and tab switch result in database update queries, which access the disk. ↩

  2. I don't want to memorize three sets of debugging shortcut keys (Firebug for JavaScript, Eclipse for Java, and Komodo for Perl). Since Eclipse and Komodo shortcuts are configurable and Firebug shortcut keys aren't, I want to configure Komodo and Eclipse to match Firebug. ↩

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