5 Free Useful Tools for Web Developers

July 19, 2013
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As a web developer/designer it’s important to work with as little overheads as possible, especially if you are a freelancer. Saving money on software and tools is a great place to start since the internet is full of useful tools and resources for just about anything! There’s only one problem: many online tools only offer a free basic package which are often limited, without stumping up the cash, the tools are rendered useless.

For the budding freelance web developer who is not entirely sure if this is the correct career path, or for experienced web professionals, who might be looking to economize their budgets, we have found 5 underrated great online tools and resources to help you perform tasks in a cost effective manner.

Web authoring and design tools

For those that require a full featured HTML editor, we recommend HTML-kit. This is a proprietary HTML editor for Microsoft Windows. It is designed to format, edit, preview, validate and publish your web pages in in HTML, XHTML and XML -languages. HTML-Kit is freeware, but extra features can be brought if required.

Web hosting and domain tools

The web master tool, Whoishostingthis.com allows you to discover the hosting company of any website. Most web developers struggle with who hosts a website, because some companies rent space in other hosts data centers. Knowing the right web host is invaluable when issuing a DMCA complaint or a DDos attack (which could be a matter of urgency)

This service is completely free to use, as well as letting you find the right hosts, whoishostingthis also have a hosting comparison tool and a DMCA takedown service.

Wire framing and mock-ups

We recommend Moqups, this is a HTML5 app that can be used to create UI concepts, mockups and wireframes. This free tool allows you experiment with the information architecture of your website, moqups is a great tool as it allows you to test the functionality of your web design, ironing out any bugs before the design goes in to development.

Image Editing

Gimp.org is free, image editing and retouching tool. There are different versions available tailored for most operating systems. The developers of Gimp, strive to create high end, free software applications for creating and editing original images, icons, web pages and more for user interface elements.

Web Servers

It’s important for web developers to have a live testing environment; this is why we highly recommend XAMPP – a great open source, configurable web server. It contains MySQL, PHP, Apache, OPenSSL and more. All are put together for a smooth and simple configuration.
For Mac users we recommend MAMP, this works the same way as XAMPP.

If you know of anymore great free tools that could benefit web developers, please feel free to share them with us using the comment box below.

Photo credit to Dedalo progetti

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Amie is a web fanatic! She enjoys writing about web design and development. When Amie is not writing, she enjoys browsing through inspirational photography and art.