PyCharm Community Edition and Professional Edition Explained: Licenses and More

We often get questions about the difference between PyCharm Community Edition and PyCharm Professional Edition. We receive further questions about the difference between an individual and a commercial subscription for PyCharm Professional Edition. So let’s try to address some of these questions here:

PyCharm Community Edition

The community edition of PyCharm is Apache 2 licensed: meaning it is free and open source and you can go to GitHub, and look at the source code. You’re free to use it whenever, and wherever you like, including at work. Additionally, you can fork and modify it. See the python subfolder for details about PyCharm rather than IntelliJ IDEA.

What can I use PyCharm Community Edition for?

Let’s go to the LICENSE.txt in the root of the GitHub repo. JetBrains’ open source projects are generally licensed under the Apache 2.0 License. This means that you can use it anywhere you’d like to, and modify it freely. There are some restrictions, which we’ll look into below.

Can I use PyCharm Community Edition at work?

Yes, you can. You are allowed to use PyCharm Community Edition for commercial use.

Can I use PyCharm Community Edition at my university?

Yes, you can. However, you may be interested in learning about our free all product pack licenses for educational usage.

Could I fork PyCharm?

Yes, you can. The Apache 2.0 license doesn’t just permit using this code, but also allows modification. However, before you release YourNamePyCharm, you need to be aware that that the JetBrains and PyCharm trademarks are restricted. So if you do want to fork PyCharm, you will need to take out our branding. Furthermore, in your derived version, you will need to credit us. So you could make ‘YourNameIDE’, with a notice that it’s based on software made by JetBrains.

What can’t I do with PyCharm Community Edition?

There are some restrictions that apply when you fork PyCharm. The Apache 2.0 license requires:

  • You need to attribute us. So if you fork PyCharm, you’re not allowed to remove all notices that JetBrains made it
  • You need to include a full copy of the Apache 2 license
  • You need to include the NOTICES file

We’re not lawyers, so please be aware that this is not legal advice.

So why would I use PyCharm Professional Edition?

The professional edition of PyCharm gives you access to additional features that you don’t get in the community edition:

  • Support for Remote Development. PyCharm Pro can deploy and debug python code running on remote machines, virtual machines, and Docker containers.
  • Web Development. Django, Flask, and other python frameworks are better supported in PyCharm Pro. Furthermore, HTML, JavaScript, and CSS are only supported in the professional edition. PyCharm Professional edition bundles all features from WebStorm, JetBrains’ JavaScript IDE.
  • Database support. PyCharm Professional takes its database support from DataGrip, the SQL IDE by JetBrains. This means you can explore your database within the IDE, and get schema-aware code completion when writing an SQL statement in Python code.

Alright, so what about Individual v Commercial subscriptions?

Many people get confused when we tell them that they are allowed to use a personal license at work. We believe though, that it’s important that developers can use the tools that are right for the job, and therefore we offer low price options to individual developers.

The difference between personal and commercial licenses isn’t about who uses the software; it is about who owns the software.

  • The personal license is yours: you pay, and you own it. You can use it at work, and if you change jobs you can use it at your next job.
  • The commercial license is your employer’s: they pay, and they get to keep it if you leave. However, if you buy it and get reimbursed by your employer, you still need a commercial license: if the employer pays, it needs to be a commercial license.

Can I use my license on multiple machines?

Individual licenses: yes. Commercial licenses: yes, as long as your user name (login) is the same on all the machines that you’re running it on.

Can I still use PyCharm Professional Edition after my subscription expires?

If you’ve had a subscription for at least one year: yes. You have a perpetual fallback license for the version that was released one year before your subscription expired, and all its minor updates. See here for details.

Can I get PyCharm Professional Edition for free?


We also offer discounts for startups, recent graduates, and users of commercial competitor products, find out more about discounts on our website.

Do you still have a question?

If you have a specific sales question, contact our sales team to learn more about licenses, prices, discounts, etc. If you have any other question, let us know in the comments below, or reach out to us on Twitter.

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