Cross-platform GLSL IDE for teaching?

I am looking for a simple, cross-platform editor for developing simple GLSL programs.
What are other people using for teaching GLSL in a university class?

There used to be quite a few GLSL editors (we have even developed one ourselves), but most of them seem to be no longer maintained.


  • Cross-platform (Windows, Linux, Mac)
  • Simple to use
  • Vertex and fragment shader (not only fragment shader!), GS and other shaders would be a plus

Does anyone have any hints?

Thanks a lot in advance.

Is there some reason why one’s personal text editor of choice is insufficient? Especially when learning GLSL, shaders aren’t long enough for specialized features like name completion and the like to be important.

I guess I should have explained my question better. It’s not so much an “editor” but an IDE. After all, you need some SW infrastructure to load the GLSL shaders, load some geometry, provide a GUI for modifying the uniforms at runtime, etc. That’s what I expect from a “shader editor”. Is it a bit clearer now what I am looking for?

In the past I used a site that loads all the difficult parts for you, and just allows you to write the shader themselves. It was great for practice, and can be found here:

Other than that, the only solution I could think is to make a basic project yourself, and distribute it to the students, but that can get tricky, especially if one is not familiar with all desired platforms.

SHADERed sounds like it should fit your needs. It’s an extensible open-source shader IDE with a standalone desktop version for Windows and Linux. It also supports different shading languages, and also less common shader types like geometry shaders.

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Thanks for the hint. It really looks like what I need.

But, I tried to make ShaderEd work on Mac for several hours , to no avail. The problem is that ShaderEd relies heavily on right-clicks in the GUI. And this is not implemented in ImGUI, which ShaderEd uses.

I tried to change the source code for a few hours, but didn’t get anywhere close to resolve it.


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