Visual Studio Code for IBM i vs. Rational Developer for IBM i – *FIGHT*!

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October 24, 2023

Visual Studio Code for IBM i vs. Rational Developer for IBM i – *FIGHT*!

By NickLitten

October 24, 2023

RDi

One IBM i IDE to Rule them All

IBM has released a seemingly innocuous update to IBM Rational Developer for IBM i. The new version, V9.8, is built over the latest version of eclipse and looks and feels the same as the previous (v9.6) version of RDi but is slightly faster.

Sadly, it’s also HUGELY expensive!!!

So… sadly… it’s time to say goodbye to RDi and start the hunt for a replacement…

The obvious contender seems to be Visual Studio Code, Microsoft’s free code editor. How will it stack up against the super-expensive IBM code editor that costs nearly two thousand dollars a year?

There is one clear winner, and it might not be the one you expect!

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    • Maybe you are grandfathered in with some old pricing structure?

      The prices for Rdi are at https://www.ibm.com/products/rational-developer-for-i : $1,360 per year for a subscription for a single developer and $2,400 if you want a floating license for multiple machines.

      Compare this against VS-Code for IBM i at *cough* ZERO dollars. After a couple of months into using VS-Code as my daily IDE, I really do like it way more. It’s very extensible, noticeably faster to use, community developed by IBM-i propeller heads who are way smarter than me and using it feels cohesive and slick — VSCODE is clearly a comprehensive coding tool. Even if RDi was $FREE, I don’t think I would switch back. That speaks volumes.

      I would love to see/read a VSCODE review from your perspective 😉

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