Windows Text Editors

I’m a Mac user through and through but recently I have been required to use Windows for work. My favourite text editor for Mac is undoubtedly Textwrangler which is a free stripped-down version of Barebones BBEdit. This is a great text editor that does everything I need.

After having such good experiences with Textwranger on OS X my job was finding a Windows alternative. Other than the usual features (syntax highlighting etc) I was looking for:

  1. FTP Support (though I do not use this text editor feature on OS X, this was a requirement for me on Windows)
  2. Powerful multi-file search / replace
  3. Tabbed file editing
  4. Smart indenting- shortcuts to indent / unindent whole blocks of text
  5. Matching brackets

After some searching and testing of various solutions I found Crimson Edit, this is a great text editor that is also free! The only small problem I have had is a few bugs in the FTP connections but this is forgiveable and for me was the best free text editor for Windows. Crimson Edit has been open-sourced because the developer had no time for it any more.

Unfortunately Crimson Edit does not support SFTP connections so I had to look further. In the end I went for EditPlus. This application costs but is fairly cheap (35USD / 30 day trial available) and has a extermely powerful array of features (like Search / replace regular expression support and advanced (S)FTP support with file browser pane). I found out about this editor as it is used by the Magento developers.


Hi, call me Joe. I am a traveller, a runner, a beer drinker, a film lover, a web developer, a hiker and not a very good darts player. I am from the UK, have a BSc in Computer Science from Cardiff University and currently live in Canada.

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