Question of integrating Theia into Gitpod


Recently, we are trying to build a cloud platform for our Theia based IDE. And I found Gitpod, which used to integrate Theia, and found out from a Gitpod blog that they switched the IDE part of the architecture from Theia to OpenVSCode Server last year.

I have also open an issue to Gitpod on this situation. My question is whether Theia are still cooperating with Gitpod and providing technical support for it? :thinking:

Hi inlann,

I feel what you’re asking is really a question for the gitpod folks.It would be valuable information for them that someone is interested in using Theia with their service, so be sure to let them know.

Maybe someone hanging our here from Typefox has a clue, though?


@tsmaeder … and someone from TypeFox shall answer :slight_smile:

The relationship between Theia and Gitpod is historically quite interesting. Here’s the short version: TypeFox originally created Theia in collaboration with other companies in 2017. Later, we built Gitpod on top of that and used Theia as the IDE frontend. In late 2020 Gitpod (company) split itself off from TypeFox and started using VSCode instead of Theia. At this point the involvement of Gitpod in Theia stopped completely.

Regarding your actual question: Gitpod and the Theia project aren’t cooperating anymore, and I believe that using Theia in Gitpod is not possible anymore. Both due to management (VSCode is just strictly better for their SaaS business) and engineering decisions.

Right, I also think it is helpful to others who use Theia as an IDE framework and want to build a cloud platform :smile: So I’m trying to find a solution.

Sorry, I’m not familiar with TypeFox :cry: . Are they providing commercial technical support for cloud platform deployments?

@inlann TypeFox is providing commercial support for developing your custom programming languages or IDEs, usually based on Theia, but we also offer VSCode (and rarely Eclipse RPC) support. We used to develop Gitpod, but that part of the company split itself off.

We are usually not involved in the deployment of these apps, for that you should probably use something like Eclipse Che, which supports custom IDE images more easily.

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Wow :astonished: Eclipse Che looks like what I’ve been looking for! I’ll try it! Thanks for your so helpful reply!!! :blush:


I have tried the Eclipse Che. It embeds the IDE into its dashboard web application(workspace management application) which could simplify the synchronization of authorization but sadly, users also can’t open two IDEs in two separated browser windows:

I prefer Gitpod, which separates each IDE window from the dashboard window, so I’m going to try its 0.10.0 version, even though it’s deprecated.

BTW: I think Gitpod remove Theia because them want an actual VS Code developer experience rather than a VS Code-like IDE:
Theia is the closest we could get, to offer a VS Code-like experience in Gitpod. With the prototype we showed that we could drop “like” and run actual VS Code in Gitpod.

But Gitpod is trying to support Jetbrains, which is completely different from VS Code. So I’m thinking that if Theia offers some extra features that VS Code doesn’t, such as the awesome multiple windows, Gitpod might reconsider being compatible with Theia.