I use ModelSim primarily for simulation, but also as an editor for VHDL and TCL files. I chose ModelSim because:
- I had experience with it from University courses
- I could get it for free for use on academic projects
- There is a starter edition available with no license
ModelSim PE Student Edition: https://www.mentor.com/company/higher_ed/modelsim-student-edition
ModelSim Altera Starter Edition: https://www.altera.com/products/design-software/model—simulation/modelsim-altera-software.html
The starter has a 10,000 executable line limit. I do not know if this is a throttling limit like the Student edition, or if it is a hard limit.
Sometimes ModelSim won’t open the TCL files locally, in that case, I use Notepad++ to edit them. I have not yet added any plugins for this project.