Is it possible to have real time collaboration in an online IDE?



I am actually trying to create a browser based IDE for educational purpose to code java language programs. I want it to be something like eclipse orion except that the IDE will be capable of compiling and debugging java language code (and it will be only a bare bones IDE). And also, I want to add real time collaboration to at least the editor part of the IDE.

Would it be possible to create an online IDE that would have real time collaboration like the google docs? Also, is MobWrite one of the ways of achieving it and is it good?

If it is possible, please inform me. Thank you very much in advance.


Posted 2011-09-17T01:07:35.920

Reputation: 931

You may want to take a look at Firepad. It's an open source collaborative code and text editor that you can drop into any app.

– Andrew Lee – 2013-07-31T05:42:19.033

I don't know about MobWrite, but I've used EtherPad to do some collaborative work.

– Dave Newton – 2011-09-17T01:45:53.530

Certainly doable. Crucible from Atlassian has real-time collaboration for code reviews.

– Simeon G – 2011-09-17T02:37:37.013



I think there is an interesting option out there by IBM(Just rode in a blog), called "Web Browser-Based Interaction with the Eclipse IDE".

Have a look at this link:

So the answer is yes, it is possible somehow.

I hope it helps.


There is a similar question already on that topic(but browser interaction with the IDE is not mentioned), have a look at it, maybe can be helpful:

Real-time collaboration in Eclipse


Posted 2011-09-17T01:07:35.920

Reputation: 7 536


In theory, anything is possible.

In practice, I'm not sure that collaborative programming ... where lots of people are hacking on the same files in real time ... is going to be productive.

Programs are qualitatively different to text / markup documents. When you two people are simultaneously editing a program, semantically conflicting edits can break the "work" in a far more fundamental way than conflicting edits on a document. I don't see this being an effective way to write programs.

Stephen C

Posted 2011-09-17T01:07:35.920

Reputation: 509 237


Sure, JavaWIDE is what you are looking for:

It has concurrent editing, and you can compile and run directly in the browser.

JavaWIDE is free and sites are available to educational institutions.

Feel free to try it out (no account needed) at

Jam Jenkins

Posted 2011-09-17T01:07:35.920

Reputation: 21


It depends on the purpose of the IDE. JavaWIDE provides a great IDE for introducing programming concepts for novice programmers at the beginning of their programming classes. JavaWIDE will probably never be used for professional programmers.


Posted 2011-09-17T01:07:35.920

Reputation: 1


Cloud9 IDE has multi-language support has recently released a new collaborative tools including a new real-time collaborative editing feature (with authorship info), Group Chat and File Revision History timeslider. Further explained in


The Cloud9 IDE Developer behind that Collab


Posted 2011-09-17T01:07:35.920

Reputation: 287


Koding has a real time collaboration tool (with a bunch of cool stuff) where you can import your projects really easy. It also has a free VM with root access. Definitely worth checking out. :)


Posted 2011-09-17T01:07:35.920

Reputation: 549


I recently saw Compilr and It seems pretty decent. You can run it inside a browser, full collaboration work is supported and Its cross browser and you can run it on your devices as well.

Nice thing is that it also includes some basic courses for you to learn coding which is exactly what you are looking for :)


Posted 2011-09-17T01:07:35.920

Reputation: 4 175


For an on-premise install (you don't depend on external servers/services ) you could try Eclipse + saros (, saros depends only on XMPP but you could build your own server locally (

For web based collaboration tool on-premise too I've been developing this: It's based on nodejs,Extjs,ace editor and git, contributors are welcome


Posted 2011-09-17T01:07:35.920

Reputation: 417