Good news from the people at Microchip: MPLAB X, the new IDE for programming PIC microcontrollers, has finally come out of beta and is now available for download. At the moment of writing this article, the Microchip website still lists MPLAB X as being in beta, but the link already points to the released 1.00a version. You can find the download here: Download MPLAB X IDE.
This link will likely change within a couple of weeks, as the new IDE will be officially released, so here is the link to the official MPLAB homepage:
After playing around with MPLAB 8.xx for some time, i have to say that MPLAB X is an enormous improvement. Gone is the cluttered multiwindow environment, with it's confusing layout and non-intuitive structure. MPLAB X looks a lot more like Microsoft's Visual Studio IDE, for me the benchmark of a good development suite. I haven't spent much time in the new IDE yet, but as far as i have seen it's a big step forward. Much less clutter, a more logical interface, and much improved project management. Watch this blog for a more in-depth article, coming soon!