Code editor with robust local / remote (FTP) support?

I’m currently using BBEdit, and I’m not super-happy with how it handles FTP connections and document navigation. So I’m looking for an alternative. This is primarily for PHP / HTML / JavaScript work.

The big dealbreaker for many editors I’m seeing seems to be FTP / SFTP support.

I’ve downloaded Nova from Panic, and it seems like it’s right up my alley - but $99 is pricey. Not unjustifiable, but pricey. :slight_smile:

I looked at Sublime Text, but its FTP support is all via plugins and extensions - and I’m hesitant to rely on third-party add-ons for crucial functionality. Plus, it’s not any less expensive than Nova.

I’m sure there are a number of programmers in this community - are there other options I should be considering?

+1 for Nova


There’s always emacs.


VS Code can do that. For free.


+5 for VSCode. And it has massive community support.


I use a combination of Transmit and BBEdit for this kind of work.

I use Transmit plus an editor as well when I have to edit directly on or sync files to a server without git. Visual Studio Code can do this but it requires use of a plugin, and I wouldn’t describe them as necessarily robust compared to Transmit and Nova’s internals and UI. Free is good, though!

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Used Sublime Text, VS Code and Nova, currently Nova which does all I need and I would think given the dev stack you’re using you as well.

Sublime has a crazy dev cycle, years of inactivity. VSCode is good but Electron and works on plugins, it was simply overkill for what I needed but it’s impressive.

Nova seems to hit the sweet spot, I do a lot of FTP stuff, maintaining over 70 sites for clients as well as writing new ones. Nova is fast, integrated with the OS well, a good MacOS citizen, GIT built in and has plugins if you need them. Not the most powerful but growing and updated regularly.

I looked at BBedit and while I maintain a free version for the odd UNIX Database generated text file I need to debug/clean up via automated scripts, the way it handles FTP did not sit well with my personal workflow.

So basically a long winded way of saying +1 for Nova :wink:


If you have a license then there’s a beta release channel for Sublime which gets fairly frequent updates.
Though with the move to 4 things have changed a bit.

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Vim! vim ftp://[user]

You can use scp, too.


VSCode is simply the best code editor out there. So I use VSCode + Forklift. Transmit is nice too but I got Forklift in a bundle and it earned my favor after it came in clutch on some obscure directory with many thousands of files that gave my Transmit a heart attack.

I don’t think you’ll do better than Nova if you want everything integrated. Dreamweaver is the only editor I know of with proper, split-pane FTP. But the code editing in Dreamweaver is slow as molasses. And, well, it’s $250-600/yr to rent.

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@webwalrus May be wait for a Black Friday deal on it. I was on the beta testing and did not capitalize on the discount at that time. Not sure if they would offer any BF discounts. Does anyone know if Panic does?

I echo everything in this post. VS Code is the go to these days for amateur and pro dev’s alike. Couple that with Transmit and you are rockin’!

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BBEdit + Transmit is a winning combo.

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