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Last Updated: 5th March 2021


CodeWarrior is an integrated development environment (IDE) published by NXP Semiconductors for editing, compiling, and debugging software for several microcontrollers and microprocessors (Freescale ColdFire, ColdFire+, Kinetis, Qorivva, PX, Freescale RS08, Freescale S08, and S12Z) and digital signal controllers (DSC MC56F80X and MC5680XX) used in embedded systems.

The system was developed by Metrowerks on the Macintosh and was among the first development systems on that platform to cleanly support both the existing Motorola 68k and the new PowerPC (PPC). During Apple’s transition to the PPC, CodeWarrior quickly became the de facto standard development system for the Mac, rapidly displacing Symantec’s THINK C and Apple’s own Macintosh Programmer’s Workshop.

The purchase of NeXT in 1996 led to a decline in CodeWarrior’s relevance as Mac programming moved to the NeXT platform’s own developer tools. Metrowerks responded by porting CodeWarrior to Microsoft Windows and introducing compilers for a wider variety of platforms. It became a major part of the software stack for Motorola’s varied lines of microcontrollers and eventually led to them purchasing Metrowerks in 1999.

It was widely used on most platforms based on PPC or other Motorola processors and many games consoles. The product moved to Freescale Semiconductor when that company formed in 2004, and then to NXP when they purchased Freescale in 2015.

Originally a single integrated product, now known as the “Classic IDE”, the IDE was later replaced with Eclipse IDE.