PSPad - The Free Text Editor

30th April 2008 - 4 minutes read time

Since starting programming I have used a lot of text editors, some have been good, and some have been very, very bad.

One text editor that stands out is PSPad. It is a free text editor for Windows that has lots of features and is very stable. I have been using this for a while now and have seen very little problems. I say "very little" as I once tried to open a 800 megabyte log file and it fell over, which is understandable.


It has the following features:

  • Have many different files open with multi tabbed editing.
  • Close and re-open the editor with the same files you had open.
  • Built-in FTP client.
  • Search and replace in files.
  • A very neat text difference engine which highlights differences.
  • Create new files from templates in HTML, PHP, Pascal, JScript, VBScript, MySQL, MS-Dos, Perl and a few more.
  • Fully functional HEX editor.
  • Intelligent syntax highlighting dependent on file type, which can be changed to any other syntax highlighting.
  • Ability for users to create their own syntax highlighting.
  • Print out text with coloured syntax highlighting.
  • When typing you can press Ctrl and space to see a list of functions that start with what you have typed. This is an intelligent list so if you are writing in PHP you will be given a list of PHP functions.
  • Built in code explorer that allows you to view functions and classes in your files. Created for PHP, XML, HTML, INI, C/C++ and Pascal, but more are in development.
  • Spell checker.
  • Auto correction of code.
  • Bracket and tag matching.
  • HTML code tidying and formatting.
  • HTML entities and ASCII chart.
  • Text manipulation with line sorting, removing blank lines and regular expression text replacing.
  • Export text with syntax highlight to HTML, RTF, Tex format or to clipboard.
  • Ability to link program with external compilers and capture error messages.
  • Record, save and load macros to carry out repetitive tasks.
  • Create a project so keep track of multiple files.
  • Many more features besides these few.

Personally I find the bracket and tag matching extremely useful, and is a feature that makes it stand above professional text editors like Dreamweaver. If you are battling with your current text editor then give PSPad a go and see how easy it is.


When doing Web design up here in Manchester I have fallen into the trap using dreamveaver for editing and as an ftp client. I have lately been using Filezilla for the FTP side, I will give PSPad a go now.

Michael Smyth (Sat, 02/21/2009 - 14:19)

I have just tried it whilst doing some web design, it works great!

The Web Design… (Sat, 02/21/2009 - 14:20)

Glad you liked it! I usually use a combination of PSPad and WinSCP to quickly edit and manipulate files online.

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