Cloud Shell Editor interface overview

This page describes the features of the Cloud Shell Editor.

Viewing and editing files

Cloud Shell comes with a built-in code editor that allows you to browse file directories as well as view and edit files, with continued access to the Cloud Shell. The Cloud Shell Editor is available by default with every Cloud Shell instance, and is based on Theia.

To work with the Cloud Shell Editor, follow these steps:

  1. Launch the Cloud Shell Editor by clicking Code Editor Button Open Editor on the toolbar of the Cloud Shell window. The editor opens above the Cloud Shell terminal window.

    Tip: You can also launch the Cloud Shell Editor by navigating to

  2. Use the left-hand pane to browse through the file directories. Use the right-hand pane to view and edit your files.

  3. Access the functionality to toggle the editor and the Cloud Shell window, upload and download files, preview web applications on a Cloud Shell virtual machine instance, and view usage statistics, from the Cloud Shell toolbar in the upper right-hand corner.

    Cloud Shell and Editor session

Alternatively, you can open an existing file - for example, README-cloudshell.txt from the environment above - in the Cloud Shell Editor, by running the cloudshell command in your console. For example:

cloudshell edit README-cloudshell.txt

Uploading and downloading files

You can further manage your files with the Cloud Shell Editor with its Explorer. Right-click the directory or file you'd like to use within the Cloud Shell Editor Explorer and choose to upload or download files using the menu: Copy Download Link, Download, Upload Files....

Right-click a file or folder within the Explorer to bring up menu to access Upload/Download options

Alternatively, you can navigate to File > Download/Upload Files.

Activity bar

Along the left side of the Editor is the Activity bar where you can access the views available in the Cloud Shell Editor.

These Activity bar views are:

  • Explorer icon Explorer: View the folders and files in your current workspace
  • Search icon Search: Search your files for a string or regular expression
  • Debug View icon Source Control: Manage application files with the Cloud Shell Editor's Git support
  • Debug View icon Debug: Debug your application by setting breakpoints and inspecting variables
  • Cloud APIs Cloud Code - Cloud APIs: Browse through and enable Cloud APIs and add Cloud Client Libraries to your project
  • Cloud Run icon Cloud Code - Cloud Run: Monitor and manage your Cloud Run resources
  • Kubernetes icon Cloud Code - Kubernetes: Monitor and manage your Kubernetes resources

Language support

The Cloud Shell Editor comes pre-loaded with rich support for Go, Python, Java, .NET Core, and Node.js, providing language features such as:

  • Smart highlighting, code suggestions and context-based completions
  • Linting and providing descriptive errors
  • Code navigation (Go to definitions, declarations, references, and implementations)
  • Intuitive debugging support

Cloud Code integration

The Cloud Shell Editor comes with Cloud Code support.

Cloud Code provides IDE support for the full development cycle of Kubernetes and Cloud Run applications, from creating and customizing a new application from sample applications to running your finished application. Cloud Code also supports you along the way with run-ready samples, out-of-the-box configuration snippets, and a tailored debugging experience.

Cloud Code supports the development of applications in Node.js, Python, Java, Go, and .NET Core.

In addition to the Cloud Code menu available in the status bar of Cloud Shell, you can also access Cloud Code commands through the command palette. To open the command palette, press Ctrl/Cmd+Shift+P or click View > Command Palette.

For a comprehensive look at what you can do with Cloud Code using Cloud Shell, see Getting started with Cloud Code.

Version Control Support

Cloud Shell Editor comes with pre-configured version control. With Cloud Shell, you can initialize repositories, diff between file states, stage, unstage, and commit changes.

For a comprehensive look, see the Using version control guide.

Workspace management

With Cloud Shell, you can manage and configure your projects as workspaces. Workspaces usually represent your root project folder and with the Cloud Shell Editor, you can create, open, and save workspaces as well as customize them with project-specific settings.

For a detailed look at working with workspaces, see the Workspace management guide.

Debugging support

Cloud Shell allows you to easily debug your application, with full debugging support for Go, Node.js, Python, and Java applications. You can create launch configurations, set breakpoints, and inspect variables, all within Cloud Shell.

Additionally, you can debug Kubernetes applications on a local cluster (like minikube or Docker Desktop) or a remote cluster on GKE or any other Cloud provider.

For more information, see the Debugging with Cloud Shell guide.

Built-in terminal

Access your underlying Cloud Shell instance without having to leave the editor by navigating to Terminal > New Terminal. You can also run multiple terminal windows by using the Split Terminal option.