In April 2016, I moved from Mac to Windows as my primary development environment. It was an interesting switch, and one I’m quite happy with – Windows 10 has proven itself to be a robust operating system, and all of my software requirements have been met and often exceeded.
Most of my work is WordPress development, building custom themes and plugins, and at the moment my toolkit comprises:
- Laragon: Don’t waste your time with Vagrant or Wampserver, Laragon is a super fast, easy-to-use, productive and powerful local server.
- PHPStorm: Without question the best IDE I’ve ever used. Faster than Netbeans, more feature-packed that Sublime Text or Atom. If you develop in PHP, you need PHPStorm.
- WinSCP: A feature packed, yet completely free and open source FTP/sFTP/SCP client for Windows.
- ConEmu: Windows Command Prompt on steroids, ConEmu is my command line of choice for working with Git, SSH, Gulp, Grunt and everything else CLI-based.
Minimal Configuration Required
Laragon is really the star of the show when it comes to WordPress development on Windows. Using Laragon as your local server gives you a great head start because it also installs an invaluable collection of Apps.
The ConEmu terminal is pre-installed, and includes Composer, Git and NPM pre-configured, so there’s no need to download and install these separately. Sublime Text and WinSCP are also bundled, along with the SSH client Putty and a number of other tools.
My experience setting up my Windows 10 laptop for WordPress development was straightforward and easy. My requirements are fairly minimal, however it’s often problematic setting up command line tools such as Composer and NPM, but Laragon made this very easy.