What’s the best Free RPG Editor?

If you are reading this blog then chances are you are (a) an RPG Programmer and (b) using SEU to edit your code and (c) you are frustrated that SEU wont syntax check new RPG anymore! It’s time to leap into an RPG EDITOR or be pushed… RDi is bloody good but it’s also a very expensive code editor. I still hope that one day, IBM will release a lightweight, desktop Free RPG Editor?

This begs the the question of “which editor should a RPG developer use?” or

What is the best free alternative to RDi (Rational Developer)

Free RPG EditorSEU’s syntax checking has been frozen at IBM V6 level and, sadly, this means that good old green screen SEU will not recognize any of the 7.1 RPG enhancements and will flag all these new features as errors.

As far as I know SEU has been stabilized by IBM. This is also known as “declared dead and will be given no future updates”. IBM clearly want people to adopt their flagship code editor for IBM i Software Developers — RDi is Rational Developer for i

RDi is an Eclipse based code editor for IBM i Developers used for writing modern RPG, CL, XML, JAVA, PHP etc code. Ten years back we used it’s predecessor called WDSC “WebSphere Development Studio Client”. If you are not using a code editor then your developers are probably stuck with the twenty year old text based code editor SEU “Stoneage Editing Utility” 😉

There are other code editing tools out there ranging from older opensource and freeware solutions to modern commercial products, but IBM’s RDi is by far the best. IMHO

Free RPG Editor

ORION – The latest FREE offering from IBM

NOTEPAD++ there was a RPG plugin to Notepad++ called ICEBREAK


The IceBreak RPG plugin is easy to install – and files with the RPGLE, SQLRPGLE extension can have the syntax highlight and block marks according to the RPG syntax simply by selecting “IceBreak” language from the language list; The reason why you have to select “IceBreak” and not “RPGLE” is – first: we don’t want to collide with any other RPG syntax’ers – and second: IceBreak has some nice extensions to RPGLE so you can use the language for Web development in conjunction with the IceBreak server for IBMi / iSeries and AS/400. Read more here: http://www.icebreak.org Back to the installation: If you have issues with the download from public NotePad++ site, then use our deployment site: 1) Quit all running Notepad++ 2) Download the installation from: http://webfiles.icebreak.org/webfiles/icebreak/Notepadpp.zip 3) Unzip the zip file to desktop – (You can remove it just after the installation is completed) 4) Now open the NotePad++ folder on you desktop: 5) Click on the install.cmd which will copy the RPG language definition into the notepad++ folder 6) Now reopen Notepad++ 7) For any type of IceBreak source ( .aspx, .asp .rpgle .sqlrpgle) : 7.a) Click “Language” 7.b) select “IceBreak” Note: If you have installed any other userlanguage into Notepad++ please backup the file “userDefineLang.xml” in directory %APPDATA%/Notepad++ before you proceed. Enjoy 🙂

IBMiCMD – RPG Editor extension for Visual Studio


Websphere Development Tools – although its free it’s also very old, doesnt support new RPG code and replaced by RDi

RPG Next Gen – I really liked this and used it after WDSC and before moving to RDi. The author has moved to a commercial route, checked out it’s replacement (Mi Workplace)

Paid Alternatives

Mi Workplace – it’s not free but it’s cheap! Consider that Rdi is close to $900 and MiWorkplace is close to $40 – but it’s a full featured editor and priced correctly. If you cant get RDi this is your best best

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