Are you looking for the best text editor for Windows?
Text Editor is a need of every developer. If you don’t choose a good editor at the beginning of coding career, you may start hating the coding.
Coding is complicated, but a right text editor can make the various task easy for you.
In this article, I am going to mention the best editor that you can install on Windows.
Characteristics of Best Text Editor for Windows
How a Window text editor became the best. The ‘best’ is subjective, but there are several attributes on which we judge every editor in the list.
We asked our developer team what they look for in the editor.
Speed: The text editor has to be fast. Also, the text editor must not be slowing down the other computer programs running. Dealing and running big programs, text editors are prone to become slow. However, getting too slow can hinder the work and ruin the coding mood.
Manikandan Selvakumar, a Senior Developer at MantraCloud, uses Notepad++. For him, speed is more important than any other feature.
‘Text editors are the engine of software development. If they are slow, everything is going to move sluggishly, and in the fast-paced industry, we need to be quick.’ he says.
Extensions: The extensions and plugins add extra capabilities to the text editors. Also, the extension support reduces the number of inbuilt features – enabling the users to install the one that they need to use. It improves performance and allows customization.
Integration: Once the code is written, it has to be deployed and tested. Integration with various programs, including Github and FTP, improve the workflow.
Learning curve: The text editors should be easy to learn. Developers’ time is expensive, and no one wants to spend time learning a text editor. The easier it is for developers to plug and play, the better it is.
Language Focus: Text editors that are specific to a language are preferred by the experts instead of general editors. PyCharm is used by Python developers, while Atom is for HTML developers. The domain-specific editors come with the help and documentation for that domain.
Design: The text editor’s design, look, and style also have an effect.
Aditya Verma, a Senior Developer at Breeze.io, says:
‘I am spending hours coding in the text editor; it should be customizable, so I can adjust it according to my mood. The editor is a second home for developers like me, and we want to feel it like personal space.’
The best editors for Windows provide a way to change the skins, dark mode, and colors of the editor without making it slower.
Based on these attributes, we found these 11 best text editors for Windows are a good option for beginners as well as experts.
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Best Text Editor for Windows
The best free text editor for Windows are:
Notepad++ is a powerful text editor for windows. It is a popular lightweight text editor and runs only on Windows.
Notepad++ is the best tool to replace, find or compare the text.
It allows you to write code in more than 40 languages and offer documentation for the rest of the language.
The editor has auto-save and auto-completion features that reduce manual efforts.
Moreover, there are many plugins for the Notepad++ that increase the efficiency of this editor. Colour coding amazingly distinguish different parts and helps you to cover and view portions quickly.
- Syntax Highlighting
- Auto-Completion for Words and Functions
- Customisable GUI
- Support Multiple Languages
- Code Folding
- Allow Collaborative Editing
Created by GitHub, Atom is popularly known as a hackable text editor.
Atom is a modern text editor with attractive UI.
The text editor is so customizable that you can easily add or remove any element you don’t like in it. You can add your key-shortcuts and key-bindings.
End-user can personalise the software to their liking so much that they can make it their own.
The editor also supports a large number of plugins that can be installed to enhance the usefulness of the Atom.
Atom gives you certain useful IDE features without eating the processing power of the computer. Some of these valuable features include code quality tools like linters, hydrogen and atom browser.
The loading time of Atom is considerably slow. Sometimes, the project not made on Atom does not work smoothly on Atom.
- Syntax Highlighting
- Collaborative Editing
- File system browser
- Fuzzy finder
Visual Studio Code
VS Code is a text editor that get frequent updates. With average an update a month, VS is always ready with new features.
It is an open-source editor developed by the Microsoft for the Windows. VS Code has IntelliSense features. It provide smart completions based on variable types, essential modules, and function definitions.
Microsoft Visual studio code is feature-rich and comes with a lot of modules and tools. It also allows users to download custom plugins from its market place. These plugins include useful tools like docker, which let you manage and run the dockerized process.
The editor also has a terminal command, so the user does not have to switch to run the code.
VS code editor takes so much memory that it could freeze the entire operating system sometime. It also makes outbound HTTP request which might be a security concern.
The interface could be bewildering for beginner users.
- IntelliSense for auto-completion
- Built in Git command
- Deploy within the Editor
- Font Ligatures
- Terminal inside the tool
- Integration with GitHub
It is a lightweight open-source text editor created by Adobe. It has a live update feature that allows you to see real-time changes you’ve made. There is no need to manually reload the browser to see the changes. This is the feature that makes Brackets outstanding.
Another excellent feature is the Quick Edit. It allows you to style a tag within the html file without switching over to the CSS file. It also has an inbuilt extension manager which is very useful in managing the extensions.
Adobe is primarily known as a design company. You can see it in the interface of Brackets. Mainly for the front-end creators, Brackets is an excellent text editor for Windows.
Brackets focused on developing web apps on the front end. There are plenty of standard text editor commands that are not available.
- Gutter selection of lines
- Auto-filling search field with the highlighted text
- Transforming selected text upper/lower case
- Remembering previous searches.
- Live preview
- Beautify the coding
- Building blocks
- Colour picker
Also Read: What is Apache Web Server?
The proficiency of Netbeans lies in old languages. NetBeans supports new language though, but it lacks the power of the new text editors.
The code compiler is smooth to operate, and it is suitable for writing and executing the remote codes. Exporting and Importing the project from and to the GitHub is quite simple with the NetBeans.
The checkpoint is helpful during the debugging of the code. Premade templates for every project save time in the beginning.
NetBeans IDE customisation works excellent for themes, fonts and widget.
Sometimes NetBeans execute the programs incorrectly if there is lots of project running. As the project size grows, the execution time increases.
- Fast and Smart Code Editing
- Pre made Templates for Projects
- Integrated Import-Export with GitHub
- Task Management Space display Work
Vim Text Editor have an automatic correction, error list, set compiler, automatic syntax highlighting and conversion to HTML.
It has a configurable layout that is very comfortable in terms of visualisation. You can divide the windows, both vertically and horizontally.
Vim is an excellent text editor for PHP language and web development projects. The tool has reliable documentation for every function that is helpful to beginner users.
It is an advanced text editor for developers and system administrators. Those developers that usually like to work with terminal command without graphical environment. Various commands can be run with a keyboard instead of a mouse.
Once you become familiar with the tool, Vim does improve the efficiency of the coding work.
There are lots of shortcuts that a person has to learn in the beginning to get the best out of Vim. The steep learning curve is its downfall.
- Advance features
- Many keyboard shortcuts
- Complete customisation
- Lightweight and fast editor
- Easy to navigate and edit the code
Blue Fish is another great text editor for Windows.
This is a simple text editor for windows that allows you to create simple sites of HTML and CSS quickly. Bluefish is optimum for static page sites such as sales page, or company sites.
It is the most stable and lightweight editor. Bluefish does not consume Ram like other editors, and it is also quick to load.
The integration with photoshop makes the exporting of the files easy for the developers. There is no need for manually saving the project. The software auto recovers the project in case of a crash or kill.
You cannot use high-end programming language on this text editor as it is not for them. Bluefish is better for creating static HTML pages.
- Fast and lightweight
- Loads hundreds of files within seconds
- Auto-save and recovery in case of a crash
- Unlimited undo/redo
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Emacs – Best Text Editor for Windows
The editor is around for a long time. Emacs might be the most extensible text editor for windows.
It is a highly configurable text editor; you can configure anything – theme, syntax highlighter, menu options or keyboard options.
Emacs do have a very loyal community and firm support. The editor has a cult following. There are lots of plugins and add-ons to integrate with Emacs.
This old text editor has gone through decades of upgradation and engineers are keeping it healthy. Emacs is simplistic and have a minimalist touch to it.
Emacs is not a beginner-friendly tool. A person may need a long practice to learn all the functions of Emacs
- Keyboard-based navigation
- Recording of Keyboard strokes
- The extensive amount of support
- No mouse environment
- Highly customizable Environment
It is a text editor with a pleasant user interface with accessible features and commands. It loads quickly, even with large files. You can also take quick notes and organise work this software.
On of the excellent feature of jEdit text editor is that the marker remembers their position. You can open several projects on the same window, and they all will work without crashing. However jEdit works best for Java script, but you can write any coding with this tool.
jEdit is itself written on Java. Hence it can be run on every machine. It is a clean-cut and intuitive text editor for Windows.
The access keys for entering commands are complex to configure and cause inconvenience. There are some add-ons that freeze the entire system
- Runs on Java6 platform
- Automatic syntax highlighting
- Unlimited number of clipboards
- Contents are saved across editing sessions
gEdit is an excellent tool for searching and replacing the code.
This is ideal for customers who are more open to working with GUIs as opposed to arranging line mechanical assemblies.
There is an inbuilt spell checker within the tool. gEdit has the option to configure the text colour and font. You can customise the keyboard shortcuts for personal needs.
It is not possible to install the plugins online. Only the given plugins work with the gEdit. It takes a long time to respond to large files.
- Text wrapping and auto indention
- Plugins and add-ons to make the tool more efficient
- Support internationalised text
- Multiple tabs for editing simultaneous files
Light Table is another fantastic text editor for Windows. The highlighting of the text in the code improves the visibility of the text and saves time when reviewing any line.
It saves the project automatically. Light Table does not require a high-end PC and can be executed with a few system requirements. It comes with code autocompletion.
There is no integration with FTP, so the editing from the remote location is not possible. Autocomplete function is also missing.
- Powerful editing and plugin manager
- Embed anything you want from the graph and games
- Easily customised keybinds
- Inline evaluation
- Fuzzy finder
Frequently Asked Questions
Which is the best text editor for Windows?
Atom, Visual Studio Code, Notepad++, Brackets, and Netbeans are the finest text editors for Windows. Other than them, Vim, Bluefish, and Emacs are also powerful text editors.
What is the best text editor for C++?
NetBeans and Visual Studio Code are the best text editor for C++. Codeblocks and Eclipse are also amazing text editors to write code in C++.
Which editor is best for Python?
PyCharm, Spyder, PyDev, Idle and Wing are the best text editor for Python.
If you are a beginner developer, it is essential to start with a text editor that is suitable for you. Most of the time, the first editor they master becomes the favourite text editor of the developers.
The editors in the list are the best text editors for windows. Hope you find a text editor that resonates with your skills.