When comparing WebStorm vs GitKraken, the Slant community recommends GitKraken for most people. In the question“What are the best Git clients for macOS?” GitKraken is ranked 6th while WebStorm is ranked 14th. The most important reason people chose GitKraken is:
It's modern and beautiful, it looks clean and refined. It's simple: the most used features (pull, push, branch, stash, commit) are accessible in one click, and are the only buttons. The other features aren't in complicated menus nor in hundreds of buttons, but rather displayed when you right-click on something. It gives more space to the commits, i.e. the most important things. In fact, you can collapse or reduce the other menus/windows. It displays the current path (project, branch) on an horizontal (clickable) bar at the top. It's just a matter of taste but I prefer this to the traditional "tree" view. It has undo and redo buttons on the main window. It supports some drag-and-drop gestures (for example: drag-and-droping the local branch to the remote one pushes it).
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Pro Node.js integration
WebStorm integrates with Node.js to allow for running, debugging, and unit testing of Node.js apps.
Pro Code refactoring support
To make sure your code can be easily maintained, you must first be sure to make it clean and tidy. This is the part where WebStorm really helps you. It automatically refactors your code by performing functions on it, such as extraction of variables, moving files, inline variable extraction, etc.
Pro Integrated code quality tools
WebStorm comes bundled with JSHint and JSLint. JSCS, ESLint, and Closure Linter can be installed via npm. They register as inspections and are customizable through IDE settings. They run automatically and will highlight potential issues. Pressing alt+enter on an issue will allow the user to view suggested fixes.
Pro Intelligent code completion
WebStorm has two types of autocompletion: structural completion and word expansion.
Both types of autocompletion work extremely well, have little to no problems and are quite fast even when loading suggestions on the go.
Pro Built-in web server
WebStorm has a built-in webserver that allows you to run projects from
Pro Maintains a local history
The local history feature in Webstorm tracks all your local changes in the source code that you are making. You can use it to view changes that you've made to your code and roll back whenever necessary.
Pro Typescript support
Pro Supports a wide range of plug-ins
WebStorm includes support for Meteor, Angular, and React.
WebStorm has built-in support for CoffeeScript and Dart.
Pro Support for Karma test runner
Karma allows you to execute unit tests and monitor code coverage. You can read more about using Karma with WebStorm here.
Pro Reduces the amount of repetitive code that has to be written with code snippets
WebStorm includes a feature called Live Templates. Live Templates are predefined code snippets that can include variables. They're intended to increase productivity by reducing the amount of repetitive code that has to be written.
Pro Ability to base hot keys on previously used IDEs
When you install WebStorm, it allows you to choose from other IDE's for it to base it's hot keys on. So if you are switching from another IDE, it makes it a very easy transition and productivity is not adversely affected by having to learn new hot keys.
Pro Powerful git and GitHub integration
WebStorm has a powerful visual git tool, allowing for easy commits, visual diffing, merging, push/pull, rebasing, and inspecting the VCS history of a project. GitHub is supported natively - you can check out a project directly from GitHub.
Pro CSS pre-processor support
WebStorm has built-in support for Sass which is one of the most stable and powerful CSS extension languages.
Pro Built-in terminal/run tools
WebStorm (and really all of the IntelliJ IDEs) support the plugins throughout their plugin ecosystem which leaves you with 100s of tools to handle your automation tasks. There is a wide range of build-related plugins that help you by having pre-defined commands to execute with the click of a button. Out of any other IDE, WebStorm has by far the most coverage when it comes to tools for your development workflow.
Pro Theme support / tweaking
The theme is very easy to customize to your liking. You can change font-size, colors, highlighting colors, and more.
WebStorm has support for Grunt and Gulp task runners.
Pro Server and client-side debugger
WebStorm has a powerful debugger, with support for conditional breakpoints.
Pro Support for all major VCS systems
Webstorm supports not just Git and Mercurial, but Subversion, CVS, and Perforce as well.
Pro Powerful Code Templates
Code Templates are powered by Apache VTL (Velocity Template Language) and allow for includes, custom variables, conditional blocks, iterators, and live templates.
Pro Really good configurable code formatting
This integrates with other community tools like ESLint and editorconfig.
Pro Multi-line select and editing
Pro Free for open-source development, students, and teacher
Non-commercial open source projects, and students and teachers (including classroom licenses) may qualify for a free license. There is a 50% off license for startups (under 3 years old). You can read more about it here.
Pro Has a built-in terminal
The IDE comes with a built-in terminal, a feature lacking in some lighter editors.
Pro Special icons for most filetypes in project list
Webstorm comes with icons for many filetypes which makes it easier to find what you're looking for in the project list.
Pro Cordova support
Pro Webpack support
Assists with configuration and understands module resolution.
Pro Dart language support
Autocompletion, syntax-highlighting, refactoring, and pub integration for Dart are supported in WebStorm.
Pro Coffeescript support
Pro Low memory use
It may seem like a complex IDE and it does have a lot of functionality, yet it uses way less RAM than barebones-looking, Electron-based IDEs.
Pro Gulp support
Pro Auto sync settings across team / machines / platforms
With the settings repository, you can easily enforce your development standards.
Pro Different configurations for different projects
It is able to specify for example node versions, which will be used to run task for current project.
Pro Interactive theme (color scheme) editor
Makes adjusting an existing or creating new themes a breeze. Especially due to things like inheritance, as well as easily exporting/distributing/importing the color settings which really only store where on deviates from the defaults (thus the resulting files are very small and relatively human-readable).
Pro Efficient and effective
Pro Beautiful user interface
It's modern and beautiful, it looks clean and refined.
It's simple: the most used features (pull, push, branch, stash, commit) are accessible in one click, and are the only buttons. The other features aren't in complicated menus nor in hundreds of buttons, but rather displayed when you right-click on something.
It gives more space to the commits, i.e. the most important things. In fact, you can collapse or reduce the other menus/windows.
It displays the current path (project, branch) on an horizontal (clickable) bar at the top. It's just a matter of taste but I prefer this to the traditional "tree" view.
It has undo and redo buttons on the main window.
It supports some drag-and-drop gestures (for example: drag-and-droping the local branch to the remote one pushes it).
Built on top of Electron, so it runs on Linux, Mac, and Windows.
Pro Free version available
There are both pro and free versions available. The free version is pretty complete feature-wise for day-to-day operations.
Pro Extremely easy to use
A lot of care has gone into trying to make GitKraken as easy and intuitive as possible and it show. Every action is quick and painless with no more user interaction than necessary. For example, switching to another branch is as easy as a double-click on the sidebar.
Pro Offers a simple way of undoing mistakes
GitKraken has simple undo/redo buttons that work the same way you'd expect in any other software.
Pro Some of the best integration with hosted version control services
GitKraken can be connected to Github, Gitlab, or Bitbucket accounts through OAuth. From that point onward most if not all actions that are related to these services can be done inside GitKraken. Things like: cloning or forking a repository, adding a remote, pushing to a remote repository hosted on these services can be done inside the app.
You can even manage pull requests inside GitKraken for example. All pull requests for a certain branch for example are shown on that branch's graph.
Pro Under constant improvement
A quick glance at GitKraken's release notes shows how frequently it's updated. Updates are released on a 2-4 week cycle and each one brings new features and bug fixes.
Pro Has a FuzzyFinder
GitKraken has a fuzzy finder to switch between repos/files.
Pro GitFlow support out of the box
Supports GitFlow out of the box.
Pro Perfect for beginner developers
GitKraken is easy to use and is brilliant for the beginner developers
Pro Has a dark theme
No more eyestrain staring at white screens - GitKraken has a lovely dark theme.
Pro Good keyboard shortcuts
Con Occasional slow performance
WebStorm can sometimes choke all cores of the CPU. There are numerous reports of high CPU usage.
Con Not free for commercial use
A paid license is required to use WebStorm for commercial use. The license terms changed in November 2015 and currently require a subscription (per year: $59 personal, $129 for companies). Students can obtain a free non-commercial, educational license good for one year. There is also an option to pay on a monthly basis in addition to perks, such as a fallback commercial license that can be used for free.
Con Plug-in ecosystem isn't robust
Every framework or extension with any popularity whatsoever will have a plugin for VS Code. Sometimes they'll still support Atom. Only one in twenty will have native support for WebStorm.
If you want support for the latest libraries, you won't get it in WebStorm.
Con Non-native filesystem causes issues
The Java wrapper around the filesystem doesn't actively watch for file changes (by, for example, using the fsevents api on OS X), and as a result can become easily desynchronised from the actual filesystem.
It should be noted though that this is easily remedied by going to File/Settings/System Settings and checking the "Synchronize Files on frame or editor tab activation" option. It's also recommended to more explicitly represent your workflow within WebStorm itself. Most external tools/tasks can be handled with WebStorm. And if it's not in a plug-in, then you can handle it with the File Watchers.
Con Not open source
This application is proprietary, and thus cannot be modified, freely distributed, or trusted for security.
Con Can't open multiple projects in a single instance
The only way to open multiple projects is to run a new instance of WebStorm which is not ideal. WebStorm can use up to 1-1.5 GB of memory.
Con You may have to fiddle with the JVM memory settings in configuration files
To get it to run properly, you have to edit the JVM memory settings when you use Node.js. Node.js makes the small JS project you have into a "large" project that requires more memory.
Con Bad default options compared to the competition
Examples are an unreasonably low number of undo steps and automatic saving (which causes webpack dev server to bundle VERY frequently).
Con Proprietary file dialogs
Webstorm doesn't use the native Windows and OSX file dialogs, which makes it more of a hassle to open projects.
For instance, you don't have access to your favorite folders on the left-hand side in their custom file dialogs.
Con Poor usability on option and menu navigation
You need to press a combination of keys or navigate through different menu levels to carry out the two most common things a developer does. For example, to run your code, the default is Shift+F10. To go to definition, you need to click on "Navigation" first. There is no sense to this: being forced to press a combination of keys hundreds of times or navigating through different menus can be a waste of time.
Con Constantly trailing behind on support for its main features
The Jetbrains team do an admirable job attempting to keep up with support for the features they wrap, but they are running an un-winnable race. For example, WebStorm 11.0.2 hangs when trying to debug NodeJS 5.0+ projects (30+ seconds before hitting breakpoint). By the time they fix it, 5.1 will be out and something else will break.
Con Newer versions are increasingly unstable
This only happens when it's not a major version.
Con Must log into GitKraken servers to use the free version
All functionality is disabled unless you register for a free account and remain logged in.
There is the $99/user/yr Enterprise option. It allows you to deploy a Linux License Server in an air-gapped/offline environment.
Con Has memory-related issues
Like most Electron apps, GitKraken has some memory-related issues. For starter, it requires more memory for an action than an equivalent non-Electron application. Although this should not be a problem most of the time for people who use machines with lots of RAM (after all, RAM is pretty cheap nowadays), it can have some issues when opening large repositories and there have been cases where GitKraken failed to open very large repositories or started lagging once they were opened.
Con Not open source
It is gratis (no cost) but is not open source. The community cannot fix problems in it, audit it for security, or trust it in general.
Con Crashes once in a while
Under specific circumstances, like resetting 5000+ changes, the GUI will crash.
Con Not free for commercial use
The free version of GitKraken cannot be used in commercial projects.
Can take between 2 and 5 seconds to load a repository, if not crashing while loading
Con No tab support
Cannot access multiple repositories in the same session.
Con Amending merge output is a pro feature
In most cases of Merge Conflicts, users are stuck with auto-merge or manually resolving it by hand. This is because in the Free Tier, users can only (1) Keep File (ver 1), (2) Keep File (ver 2), (3) Auto-merge, or (4) Use External Merge Tool.
In addition, using External Merge Tools is very limited because GitKraken (all tiers) restricts External Merge Tools to only those it managed to Auto-detect. It also does not support custom arguments for the External Tools.
Modifying the merge output directly, or Selecting lines to keep/discard, is a Paid Feature.
Con Missing some advanced features
Checkout & Hard Reset
Advanced or Interactive Rebase (aka history rewrite)
Progress bar indicator
Con No longer free for use with private repos.
You can use GitKraken for free if you're working on a public repo, but you can no longer work on a private one without paying.
Con Has annoying popup reminders that ask you to upgrade to the Pro version
Understandable, since nobody is entitled to use work done by others for free, but annoying nonetheless.
Con Can be confusing
Con Ugly, looks like a web app
Con No real commitement to Linux support
Infinite loop on Fedora 28, no debug feature or stacktrace available, no clear dependencies listing.... no real support on Linux.