IntelliJ Platform and Fragmentation Issues


Has been almost a year since I don't use IntelliJ IDEs. And it is not because I dislike the IDEs, not at all, I would probably tell every single person to use IntelliJ in the long run.

But, as a polyglot engineer, the fragmentation between WebStorm, IntelliJ, RubyMine, Go IDEs is killing me right now.

Yes, I understand that many of them are just merely lightweight IDEA but focused more in particular programming language, I got it. But it doesn't help me at all.


Maintain the same configuration cross-IDEs:


At this point, even the auto-sync feature is not useful anymore when I am coding. When I find something useful, now I need to set the same setup in multiple IDEs (again polyglot). This task is annoying; the reason why I am using the VS Code for most things now.

I don't want to open one of those IDEs and realized that my new shortcut is gone because I forgot to add it. I hate to see this happening when in 2019 is not a matter of technical things, I am pretty sure you can figure this out in no time from the technical perspective.


One IDE, rule them all:


I don't understand what is so special about WebStorm vs. IntelliJ when they are both built on the same platform. When I do research online, the differences are around the default plugins, some wizards, and release cycles.


That is nothing technical at all in my eyes, more like product driven decision, which is totally fine and I have no issues with it.


Despite that, again, it doesn't help me at all.


What is so special about adding more wizard to a centralized IDE, technically speaking? Why is so hard to create the concept of a bundled package that would allow me to install everything from WebStorm-like into IntelliJ? And have different release cycle around the bundled package. Bundle that represents the full setup of WebStorm from the business perspective, but for IntelliJ users, we don't care about this.


Why do you have to punish us because of the business decision?


I don't see this being a technical limitation, and it is draining my soul as a programmer. I want to go back to IntelliJ platform, especially now that I will be coding in Java now as well (on top of Elixir, Ruby, Go, JavaScript/TypeScript) 

These two things are killing me, and it took me years to decide to speak out because I can't take it anymore.

Hopefully, I am entirely wrong, and all these issues are fixable today, but every answer I found on the internet doesn't address any of my concerns.

I don't want to give up to amazing wizards from specialized IDEs when this is totally possible to do today from the technical side (or I may be wrong, please explain why because I can't imagine why it wouldn't be possible).


Help me to understand the technical reason why wouldn't be possible or I beg you to do something about these two issues.


Thanks a lot for the detailed feedback, I'll make sure to pass it on to the team.

As for the issues you mentioned, there are indeed some technical difficulties that we are trying to overcome. Settings sync between different IDEs is intended to work seamlessly, but there could be some corner cases like when you add a shortcut for the Java specific action in IntelliJ IDEA that is not available in WebStorm.

Since you are a true polyglot developer, I can suggest to stick with IntelliJ IDEA Ultimate with the set of the plug-ins you need so that you don't have to switch between the different products.

Also use for the easy and straightforward updates. It will create the shortcuts and maintain the launcher scripts for you automatically.

There is work in progress to decouple Java support into an isolated plug-in and we are working on the marketplace infrastructure for the paid plug-ins. It might be technically possible in the future to just buy the plug-ins you need for the single IDE.


Any updates on this topic?


Any update on this one?


Only one vote in a year, so it doesn't look like a very popular request. There are more important issues with more votes in the issue tracker, therefore this one didn't get any attention yet.


Should I find more people interested in this in order to give more priorities?

I am not sure if that many people take the time to interact with the backlog of Intellij but I am happy to find those people for you.


I feel that this feature would be useful and I've just increased the issue priority.


It's 2021 and I'm still patiently waiting for an update


I am a long-time user of Jetbrains IDEAs, but I must say this issue is just driving me up the wall and make me want to quit every so often.

this issue has been made even more unbearable since the default MAC OS keymap has conflicts with the operating system and you need to fix those conflicts across IDEAS

This is my keymap journey over the years

  1. Did C++ with xcode
  2. Got a job where they used PHP mainly got PHPStorm and loved it
  3. Switch company and used  PHPStorm, Golang, WebStorm and DataGrip - syncing via the clunky settings repository.
  4. Gave up on jetbrains, used VIM and other text editor or ideas
  5. started a new job that mostly just used Go (so used Goland) - that was good
  6. Then started a new job that touched several different codebases, tried again the Golang, WebStorm, Pycharm and DataGrip setup ( :/ )
  7. It still didn't work
  8. Tried Syncing with the toolbox (account settings) -- keymap never synced
  9. I had a period with a different Operating system, Linux and Wind ( that surely didn't work - but understandable)
  10. Decided to quit using the different Jetbrains ideas and just started using Ultimate ( this was the best solution so far, makes me wonder why they have different ideas).
  11. Now started a new job their DB architecture is not segmented per project, so I wanted to use DataGrip which is awesome for that issue, AND I am back in the same boat 8 years later. 

I'm a big advocate for Jetbrains products, but this is my main (╯°□°)╯︵ ┻━┻     frustration in my work.


So, I am struggling with the same.

I have stopped using the older "Settings Repository" plugin and started using the alternative "Settings Sync", which has reset all my settings to default and renders the "Import Settings" functionality useless if enabled.

I have managed to make some progress through the following steps:

1. Disable Settings Sync in all IDEs.
2. Configure a new keymap in one IDE, for example, IDEA IntelliJ and export the keymap to a zip file.
3. Close all IDEs
4. Extract the "keymap/<Name>.xml" to the parent folder of your JetBrains settings, in my case (Arch Linux + KDE) it was "$HOME/.config/JetBrains"
5. Create a symlink inside each IDE config to the shared keymap file in the parent directory (results in the code block below):

[user@hostname ~]$ cd .config/JetBrains/

[user@hostname JetBrains]$ ls -l
total 28
drwxr-xr-x 12 user user 4096 Oct 27 16:07 CLion2022.2
drwxr-xr-x 3 user user 4096 Oct 18 18:57 Fleet
drwxr-xr-x 12 user user 4096 Oct 27 16:37 GoLand2022.2
-rw-r--r-- 1 user user 3020 Oct 27 15:05
drwxr-xr-x 21 user user 4096 Oct 27 16:40 IntelliJIdea2022.2
-rw-r--r-- 1 user user 3651 Oct 27 15:05 'KDE - Custom.xml'
drwxr-xr-x 15 user user 4096 Oct 27 16:37 PyCharm2022.2

[user@hostname JetBrains]$ ls -l */keymaps
total 0
lrwxrwxrwx 1 user user 22 Oct 27 16:32 'KDE - Custom.xml' -> '../../KDE - Custom.xml'

total 0
lrwxrwxrwx 1 user user 22 Oct 27 16:33 'KDE - Custom.xml' -> '../../KDE - Custom.xml'

total 0
lrwxrwxrwx 1 user user 22 Oct 27 16:33 'KDE - Custom.xml' -> '../../KDE - Custom.xml'

total 0
lrwxrwxrwx 1 user user 22 Oct 27 16:33 'KDE - Custom.xml' -> '../../KDE - Custom.xml'

6. Start each IDE individually, select the Custom keymap on the appropriate Settings screen.
7. Enable "Settings Sync", choosing to "Keep Local" when asked.

This approach makes me VERY close to what I need, the only problem is that sometimes (and I haven't yet managed to nail down which times) the shared keymap file loses the most recent changes. I had a theory that when using multiple IDEs at the same time, the LAST IDE to be closed would overwrite the file with its own keymap settings. I tried to only change keymap settings when a SINGLE IDE is running, and close/open it before opening other to ensure data was synced to the file, but still, sometimes, recent keymap changes are overwritten and lost.

Considering how old and frequent this request from the community has been, should it be related to an open source project I am sure someone would have already fixed it. Hell, even I would have attempted it as I am sure it would be a lot less work than all the workarounds I have tried to keep my keymaps in sync.

So, I kindly ask the JetBrains customer support, if not possible to provide this as a fix in the products, could someone with knowledge of the internal workings of such plugins, please help us figure out a workaround to the issue?

Thank you.


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