Visual Studio Code

One of the more common development environments is Microsoft's Visual Studio Code text editor along with the Rust Analyzer, also known as RA, extension.

Visual Studio Code is an open-source and cross-platform graphical text editor with a rich ecosystem of extensions. The Rust Analyzer extension provides an implementation of the Language Server Protocol for Rust and additionally includes features like autocompletion, go-to definition, and more.

Visual Studio Code can be installed via the most popular package managers, and installers are available on the official website. The Rust Analyzer extension can be installed in Visual Studio Code via the built-in extension manager.

Alongside Rust Analyzer there are other extensions that might be helpful:

Tips and Tricks

Using Rust Analyzer with no_std

If you are developing for a target that doesn't have std support, Rust Analyzer can behave strangely, often reporting various errors. This can be resolved by creating a .vscode/settings.json file in your project and populating it with the following:

  "rust-analyzer.checkOnSave.allTargets": false

Cargo Hints When Using Custom Toolchains

If you are using a custom toolchain, as you would with Xtensa targets, you can provide some hints to cargo via the rust-toolchain.toml file to improve the user experience:

channel = "esp"
components = ["rustfmt", "rustc-dev"]
targets = ["xtensa-esp32-none-elf"]

Other IDEs

We chose to cover VS Code because it has good support for Rust and is popular among developers. There are also other IDEs available that have comparable Rust support, such as CLion and vim, but these are outside of this book's scope.