Simple to use IDE on Windows?

Hi everyone,

I am trying to help a few retired Fortran programmers (their ages: think 70 to 80) to restore their working environment. They were used to Developer Studio with the Compaq Fortran compiler, but somehow their installation has gone awry and the CD with the installation has seen a similar fate.

I was thinking of VS Code but I have no personal experience with it. It should be close to what they are used to, because they have very little knowledge of working with computers. So, a complicated installation procedure will be out of the question. And though they are affiliated with a university still, they cna’t expect support from the IT department there - the people there had never heard of Fortran.

Thanks in advance,


Hi @Arjen,

I don’t know about Windows.

All I can say is that Compaq Visual Fortran is running quite well in Linux thanks to the WineHQ library:
Of course you need an installation CD and a license number.

I would suggest, it’s a good and free IDE.
VS Code is an advanced text editor, that can be configured to operate as an IDE, but considering your special case I would look at codeblocks first.


I would suggest they look into Intel Visual Fortran (the product would be Intel Parallel Studio XE for Fortran Windows.) It is a commercial product, but academic pricing is available. This is the direct successor to Compaq Visual Fortran and uses Microsoft Visual Studio.


Thanks everyone, I will pass on these suggestions. As they are both retired, though still active it seems, (and the IT people seem to be ignorant with respect to Fortran) I am not sure if the academic option for Intel Fortran works for them. But you never know :). It would be the smoothest transition.



I agree with Steve re Intel Visual Fortran with Microsoft Visual Studio. There is also NAG’s IDE Fortran Builder
I’m not sure about the price.

I’m definitely biased, but you could try Simply Fortran, which provides an IDE and compiler in a single installer. Ideally, there should be nothing to set up after installation; it should all “just work” (if it doesn’t, it’s a bug).

The IDE is a commercial product, but it’s free to try for 30 days. We’re also pretty loose with the promotional codes for discounts, so let me know if you like it after trying it.


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I will put this forward as well - they have a wealth of options to consider :).

For a simple and free IDE try Code:Blocks for Fortran. It is set up for and already includes GFortran (version 7.1 or 8.1 I think but easy to update if they need a later version) it is simple to download from

Just click the link.

I fall into the age group.

Yes, and see that 33’ video on Code::Blocks for Fortran: