Home | Blog | Software | Reviews and Features | Forum | Help | Donate | About us
topbanner_forum
  *

avatar image

Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.
Did you miss your activation email?

Login with username, password and session length
  • December 08, 2016, 04:13:30 PM
  • Proudly celebrating 10 years online.
  • Donate now to become a lifetime supporting member of the site and get a non-expiring license key for all of our programs.
  • donate

Last post Author Topic: Windows editors - do they have to be so bad?  (Read 51538 times)

cyberdiva

  • Supporting Member
  • Joined in 2006
  • **
  • Posts: 982
    • View Profile
    • Donate to Member
Re: Windows editors - do they have to be so bad?
« Reply #25 on: February 01, 2009, 08:56:06 AM »
You might look at UltraEdit.  I haven't used the feature, but "persistent selection" is available.  UE also handles multiple files and has bookmarks, a tabbed interface, backup options, user tools, and scripting.

http://www.idmcomp.com
+1.  I used to use Boxer, but several years ago I switched to UltraEdit because it offered bookmarks and Unicode support, neither of which Boxer had at the time.  It was also less expensive than Boxer, though both are commercial products.  I like both editors, but UltraEdit remains my favorite.

cranioscopical

  • Friend of the Site
  • Supporting Member
  • Joined in 2006
  • **
  • Posts: 4,368
    • View Profile
    • Donate to Member
Re: Windows editors - do they have to be so bad?
« Reply #26 on: February 01, 2009, 09:04:03 AM »
and what happens to a tabbed interface if you load 100 files?

I think that's taboo.

housetier

  • Charter Honorary Member
  • Joined in 2005
  • ***
  • default avatar
  • Posts: 1,321
    • View Profile
    • Donate to Member
Re: Windows editors - do they have to be so bad?
« Reply #27 on: February 01, 2009, 04:32:34 PM »
I think this is a real problem -- for Firefox there are many solutions. I wonder if any of those can be ported to your favorite text editor. 

rjbull

  • Charter Member
  • Joined in 2005
  • ***
  • default avatar
  • Posts: 2,927
    • View Profile
    • Donate to Member
Re: Windows editors - do they have to be so bad?
« Reply #28 on: February 01, 2009, 04:34:53 PM »
All:

Thanks for the tips and pointers.  I haven't had time for exhaustive testing, and haven't yet found an editor I'm completely happy with, but here's an interim report. 

First, I don't think I can face trying to learn emacs, nor vi, despite Howard Schwartz's kind words about the latter and learning it here.  Likewise, I think Kedit+REXX would be beyond me.  Cash-strapped fans of Kedit might like to look at The Hessling Editor (THE):

Quote

THE is a powerful text editor modelled on the VM/CMS text editor XEDIT with the best features of Mansfield Software's Kedit.

THE is freeware, distributed under the GNU GENERAL PUBLIC LICENSE and is available for various Unix platforms (either a text-mode application or as a native X11 application), QNX, OS/2, DOS, Amiga and Win9x/Me/NT/2k/XP.

Like its relatives, THE uses Rexx as its macro language, which means that THE is a highly configurable and versatile editor. Since Version 3.0, THE also has user-configurable syntax highlighting. 


Things were made more difficult when I realised I had two other criteria.

Item: a desire for a hotkey that would mark the word the cursor was on, or at least the rest of it.  This is common but apparently not universal.  TED Notepad and Crimson Editor both have it on Ctrl-D, and much extra kudos to TED Notepad for making Shift-Ctrl-D extend the selection to the next word.  EmEditor has it on Alt-F8, but I couldn't see such a feature in EditPad Pro on short acquaintance.

Item: bookmarks that behave in a particular manner.  I prefer the sort where you have just two hotkeys, one of which toggles a bookmark on the line the cursor is on, and the other of which jumps to the next bookmark in a circular queue.  Crimson Editor has this, and makes the whole line coloured, which makes bookmarks really stand out from the rest of the   text.  Some editors seem to use separate hotkeys for each bookmark, which tends to limit them to ten on the number keys.  That's what EditPad looked like, but I admit I need to look at it again.  Boxer has a hybrid; it uses toggles for the bookmarks, hotkeys, but numbers them, and only allows ten bookmarks per file.  However, I was interested to see it allows ten bookmarks per file for apparently as many files as you have open, and gives you a popup bookmark manager to keep track of them all.  I'd still prefer more than ten, but admit that if I really had to had that, I might be in the kind of trouble that would be better approached by cutting the task into smaller parts.

On the matter of non-volatile marked text, I found a kludge in Crimson Editor.  It has a command to mark a block of text between two brackets.  This only works in code, not plain text (unless I write a custom pseudo-colour highlighting file, I suppose) so I temporarily re-named the file .C, and put brackets where I needed them.  This approximates to the F8-F8 dance that Abterix mentions in PSPad and that f0dder offered to make for Notepad++  (thanks for the offer!)

I tried a few editors on my Win98SE laptop (even I will have to upgrade soon!).  During installation, EmEditor primly told me to update my Windows.  Not realistic in this case, but at least it was a sensible warning.  UltraEdit installed without comment and crashed when I tried to load it.  At this late stage I don't really mind if programs don't run on Win98, but I do like them not to install if they don't.  Fortunately I had installed UE via Total Uninstall, which was just as well, as UE had set a zillion Registry keys.  A 10Mb editor that does that fails to appeal to me...

The author of Boxer said that my desire for filters wouldn't work as originally expected because Boxer doesn't run a command shell when it invokes user tools, so it has no access to STDIN/STDOUT, but, one could run then via a batch file, which does.  In my case, with SED or AWK scripts, I was able to write a simple wrapper that should work for a large number of filters.  This should work for other editors too.  A serious drawback is that it means processing the entire file, whereas I would usually prefer to just process a marked block.  Plus points for EditPad Pro which has such functionality built in.

I was interested to read DC's Text Editor review, but it's badly out of date now.  I was surprised to find that Wikipedia's list of text editors was a bit thin in places, like having a blank page for Boxer, and also that the TextEditors.org was similarly rather light in places.  Still, it's a BIG subject.

My own search goes on, if in a desultory manner.  I'm getting a little more used to Boxer (hmmm - need to look at word wrap), and the most obvious other thing to do next is to take another look at EditPad Pro, which seems to be a big favourite with many.

Thanks again...

jack99999

  • Supporting Member
  • Joined in 2006
  • **
  • default avatar
  • Posts: 20
    • View Profile
    • Donate to Member
Re: Windows editors - do they have to be so bad?
« Reply #29 on: February 01, 2009, 04:46:55 PM »
Quote
TED Notepad and Crimson Editor both have it on Ctrl-D, and much extra kudos to TED Notepad for making Shift-Ctrl-D extend the selection to the next word.  EmEditor has it on Alt-F8, but I couldn't see such a feature in EditPad Pro on short acquaintance.

Item: bookmarks that behave in a particular manner.  I prefer the sort where you have just two hotkeys, one of which toggles a bookmark on the line the cursor is on, and the other of which jumps to the next bookmark in a circular queue.  Crimson Editor has this, and makes the whole line coloured, which makes bookmarks really stand out from the rest of the   text.  Some editors seem to use separate hotkeys for each bookmark, which tends to limit them to ten on the number keys.  That's what EditPad looked like, but I admit I need to look at it again.  Boxer has a hybrid; it uses toggles for the bookmarks, hotkeys, but numbers them, and only allows ten bookmarks per file.  However, I was interested to see it allows ten bookmarks per file for apparently as many files as you have open, and gives you a popup bookmark manager to keep track of them all.  I'd still prefer more than ten, but admit that if I really had to had that, I might be in the kind of trouble that would be better approached by cutting the task into smaller parts.

well, i can do the first in my emacs.

i can't immediately do the popup bookmark manager, but it wouldn't be hard to achieve.

i think that you should invest the time in learning an editor that is flexible enough to do whatever you want. you can go round thousands of editors and there will always be some feature missing. my personal editing environment is flexible enough to change to match the different things i want to do, so i've been using it for many years. when i started, html and xml did not exist!

what you choose to use is up to you. Vim would no doubt do (i've tried vim... i can't get on with it). my light emacs would probably do. Gnu emacs would do.

what about jedit? that's very nice, with lots of plugins and you can hack it to do what you want... lots of windowy things.
historically, jedit was rather slow to start, but these days either they've fixed that or the hardware is much better, so the startup time is not really an issue.

jack







rjbull

  • Charter Member
  • Joined in 2005
  • ***
  • default avatar
  • Posts: 2,927
    • View Profile
    • Donate to Member
Re: Windows editors - do they have to be so bad?
« Reply #30 on: February 02, 2009, 03:39:59 AM »
i think that you should invest the time in learning an editor that is flexible enough to do whatever you want.

I already did.  It's VDE, my DOS editor.  Then Windows came along and spoiled everything 

Quote
you can go round thousands of editors and there will always be some feature missing. my personal editing environment is flexible enough to change to match the different things i want to do, so i've been using it for many years.

I realise I'll probably have to implement some things by macros, but would like to have everything pretty much on a plate before I start having to wrestle with yet another scripting language.


jack99999

  • Supporting Member
  • Joined in 2006
  • **
  • default avatar
  • Posts: 20
    • View Profile
    • Donate to Member
Re: Windows editors - do they have to be so bad?
« Reply #31 on: February 02, 2009, 05:25:58 AM »
yes, i can sympathize with that.

just to make you certain that you'd hate the scripting in my emacs, here's a short function to load many files:

Code: Text [Select]
  1. (defun load-many-files
  2.     (
  3.         ~files (get-tty-file "load all these files:  ")
  4.         ~recursive (get-tty-string "recursive? (y/n) [N] ")
  5.     )
  6.     ~target
  7.    
  8.     (if (= ~recursive "y")
  9.         (setq ~target (expand-file-name-recursive ~files))
  10.         (setq ~target (expand-file-name ~files))
  11.     )                           ; if
  12.     (save-window-excursion
  13.         (while (!= ~target "")
  14.             (visit-file ~target)
  15.             (beginning-of-file)
  16.             (sit-for 0)
  17.            
  18.             (if (= ~recursive "y")
  19.                 (setq ~target (expand-file-name-recursive ""))
  20.                 (setq ~target (expand-file-name ""))
  21.             )                   ; if
  22.            
  23.         )                               ; while
  24.     )                           ; save-window-excursion
  25. )                               ; defun - load-many-files


jack

rjbull

  • Charter Member
  • Joined in 2005
  • ***
  • default avatar
  • Posts: 2,927
    • View Profile
    • Donate to Member
Re: Windows editors - do they have to be so bad?
« Reply #32 on: February 02, 2009, 09:49:19 AM »
[quote author=jack99999 link=topic=16622.msg149276#msg149276 date=1233573958]
just to make you certain that you'd hate the scripting in my emacs, here's a short function to load many files:

I appreciate you can make emacs do just about anything you want to that can be done with a computer, give or take a dishwasher interface, but yes, I wouldn't want to tangle with that level of scripting to do it.  Just need to get the job done with tools as ready-made as possible, even if I have to paper over the cracks eventually.

broken85

  • Supporting Member
  • Joined in 2006
  • **
  • Posts: 88
    • View Profile
    • Donate to Member
Re: Windows editors - do they have to be so bad?
« Reply #33 on: February 02, 2009, 09:59:17 AM »
Update: Sorry, for some reason assumed the attached images would be thumbnailed. Trying to see if I can change the attachments to thumbnails that link to the big ones. My bad :)

Just a note, EmEditor handles 100+ tabs (in one or multiple windows) very well:
emeditor_large-75%.png

It also closes them intelligently if you're not a fan of making 100+ clicks:
emeditor_confirmation.png

My favorite thing about it is that when I reinstall Windows or put it on a new machine, I can just install it and go. It already looks intuitive and offers a lot of customization and features/plugins without needing to script, but you don't even need them most of the time. The default interface, options (and plugin list for Pro users) is sufficient for almost everything I need.
--
Ben M
« Last Edit: February 02, 2009, 10:06:31 AM by broken85 »

mrainey

  • Charter Member
  • Joined in 2005
  • ***
  • Posts: 436
    • View Profile
    • Website
    • Donate to Member
Re: Windows editors - do they have to be so bad?
« Reply #34 on: February 02, 2009, 01:11:52 PM »
Quote
I already did.  It's VDE, my DOS editor.  Then Windows came along and spoiled everything

Just curious.  How did Windows spoil VDE?  It's advertised as running fine on Windows systems up to and including XP.
Software For Metalworking
http://closetolerancesoftware.com

jack99999

  • Supporting Member
  • Joined in 2006
  • **
  • default avatar
  • Posts: 20
    • View Profile
    • Donate to Member
Re: Windows editors - do they have to be so bad?
« Reply #35 on: February 02, 2009, 02:03:40 PM »
yes, the  EmEditor looks good there. for real files, would the tabs be varying sizes, to match the length of the file names?

jack

Dirhael

  • Supporting Member
  • Joined in 2006
  • **
  • Posts: 383
    • View Profile
    • defreitas.no
    • Donate to Member
Re: Windows editors - do they have to be so bad?
« Reply #36 on: February 02, 2009, 03:55:41 PM »
yes, the  EmEditor looks good there. for real files, would the tabs be varying sizes, to match the length of the file names?

jack

Yes, by default it does just that...but you have a few other choices as well :)

http://img292.imageshack.us/img292/3748/customizehr0.png
Windows editors - do they have to be so bad?
Registered nurse by day, hobby programmer by night.

jack99999

  • Supporting Member
  • Joined in 2006
  • **
  • default avatar
  • Posts: 20
    • View Profile
    • Donate to Member
Re: Windows editors - do they have to be so bad?
« Reply #37 on: February 02, 2009, 04:22:53 PM »
very nice.

i'm not changing though :D

i looked on the web site, just in case there was a free version... i can't see one. and at home i use linux these days and i couldn't see a linux version either.

thanks

jack

rjbull

  • Charter Member
  • Joined in 2005
  • ***
  • default avatar
  • Posts: 2,927
    • View Profile
    • Donate to Member
Re: Windows editors - do they have to be so bad?
« Reply #38 on: February 03, 2009, 05:47:42 AM »
Just curious.  How did Windows spoil VDE?  It's advertised as running fine on Windows systems up to and including XP.

Windows spoiled everything, arriving on my desktop not long after I'd finally got the most productive system I ever had, DOS, NDOS, QEMM, and DESQview.  But that assumes that a) you don't need graphics (I didn't, and still don't do much with them) and b) you don't need the Internet, where everything now is graphics-heavy.  At the time, everything I did was text.

VDE works well under Windows up to XP.  I don't have anything later, and understand that 64-bit Windows doesn't support 16-bit programs.  VDE even has limited LFN support, and can communicate with the clipboard via a macro that uses a free third-party tool, Horst Schaeffer's ClipText.  But when I have to do a LOT of clipboard access, and keep swapping between Windows programs, a native Windows editor is usually easier.

Besides, I very nearly have Darwin's Disease - grab every software in sight   :(


mitzevo

  • Supporting Member
  • Joined in 2006
  • **
  • Posts: 462
  • Control is power
    • View Profile
    • Donate to Member
Re: Windows editors - do they have to be so bad?
« Reply #39 on: February 03, 2009, 06:30:02 AM »
I don't see how [most] Windows (oh..text) editors [that you had tried] not having the features you specifically wanted are so bad. Your requirements are  not really cattered to from your findings so far .. no?

;D




The clock is running. Make the most of today. Time waits for no man. Yesterday is history. Tomorrow is a mystery. Today is a gift. That's why it is called the present.

rjbull

  • Charter Member
  • Joined in 2005
  • ***
  • default avatar
  • Posts: 2,927
    • View Profile
    • Donate to Member
Re: Windows editors - do they have to be so bad?
« Reply #40 on: February 03, 2009, 09:50:46 AM »
I don't see how [most] Windows (oh..text) editors [that you had tried] not having the features you specifically wanted are so bad. Your requirements are  not really cattered to from your findings so far .. no?

Correct.  And the customer is always right   ;D ;D ;D

Actually, I like TED Notepad, enough to donate; I like Crimson Editor too.  But neither of them has all the features I want in one place.



urlwolf

  • Charter Member
  • Joined in 2006
  • ***
  • Posts: 1,797
    • View Profile
    • Donate to Member
Re: Windows editors - do they have to be so bad?
« Reply #41 on: February 16, 2009, 03:53:06 PM »
I know this is not what you wanted to hear, but emacs has the marks/blocks function you like:
http://www.cs.cmu.ed...info2www?(emacs)Mark

ewemoa

  • Honorary Member
  • Joined in 2008
  • **
  • Posts: 2,845
    • View Profile
    • Donate to Member
Re: Windows editors - do they have to be so bad?
« Reply #42 on: February 16, 2009, 11:44:14 PM »
As with programming languages, my leaning these days is to not try to do everything with a single choice -- there is some overhead in switching temporarily, but often enough I have found it worthwhile.

Recently I have found the following to be useful: emacs, vi (various flavors), notepad, notepad++, pspad, and wordpad.

My two local currency units ;)

urlwolf

  • Charter Member
  • Joined in 2006
  • ***
  • Posts: 1,797
    • View Profile
    • Donate to Member
Re: Windows editors - do they have to be so bad?
« Reply #43 on: February 17, 2009, 03:27:24 AM »
The mark feature works in intelliJ IDEA, which is (by far) the best editor I've ever seen. If you forget that it's part of an IDE, and supports only a few languages (quite many, actually, but not some I need to be totally set), prepare to be amazed.

kartal

  • Supporting Member
  • Joined in 2008
  • **
  • Posts: 1,529
    • View Profile
    • Donate to Member
Re: Windows editors - do they have to be so bad?
« Reply #44 on: April 11, 2009, 08:17:10 PM »
Has anyone tried free Komodo Edit from Activestate?

http://www.activestate.com/komodo_edit/

widgewunner

  • Member
  • Joined in 2009
  • **
  • Posts: 90
    • View Profile
    • Donate to Member
EditPad Pro +1
« Reply #45 on: April 11, 2009, 11:46:42 PM »

  "Get 10 people in a room and you'll have a dozen different opinions on the best text editor!"
 
That said, here's my 2 cents... EditpadPro +1

Pros: (first answering rjbull's requirements...)
  • Auto backups. Yup 5 different schemes.
  • Bookmarks - either 10 per file or 10 per project. Sorry, no "Next bookmark" hotkey.
  • Handle large number of simultaneously opened file tabs using project tabs (10 project tabs * 10 files per project = 100 all visible!) The tabs stack 2 levels deep with projects on top and files below. (This is one of the main benefits of using projects according to the documentation.)
  • Flexible tools integration with configurable stdin/stdout/stderr I/O. (is this what you mean by Filters?)
  • Non-volatile marked text supported == persistent selections configuration option.
  • Select the word to the right of the cursor - ctrl+shift+rightarrow.
More Pros:
  • Small footprint and unobtrusive install/uninstall process.
  • Portable - can be installed on memory stick with all config in INI file.
  • Generous license to the user allows installation on multiple computers.
  • Unmatched regex support (no pun intended) - even has variable length lookbehind!
  • Use search pattern to highlight all lines having matches and optionally hide (fold) all lines having no match.
  • Syntax highlighting schemes completely user programmable using regexs (with a separate application designed to build them.)
  • File navigation schemes completely user programmable using regexs (with a separate application designed to build them.)
  • Excellent matching brace support where matching brace is auto-highlighted. You can jump back and forth with Ctrl+].
  • Many configuration settings are set per-filetype. e.g. You can set a different tab size for C files (4) than for ASM files (8).
  • Wordwrapped text is indented to match current line.
  • Text "snippets" - hard to describe but easy to get dependent upon.
  • Support - Jan Goyvaerts, the one-man-show developer (and keeper of the regular-expressions.info website), responds in a matter of hours to any bugs that pop up. (He's a perfectionist and all his software feels pretty solid to me.)
Cons:
  • No scripting language support.
  • Weak column (block) editing (compared to UltraEdit that is).
  • Built-in FTP client does not handle SFTP or FTPS.
  • Ctrl+tab cycles linearly through the files - not back to the MRU file.

Can you tell that I really like this editor? FWIW, my editor history... Hollerith punch card machine (FORTRAN!), PDP-11/RT-11/VT100 - KED (more FORTRAN and PDP-11/6502 Assembler), PC/DOS/Win3.x - TurboC/Borland IDE (C and MASM), XTree-Gold built-in (Wordstar-like editor), Win32 - UltraEdit32, and now... EditPadPro/ZTreeWin for general editing and file management, Komodo IDE for PHP/Javascript debugging, Visual C++ 6.0 for C debugging, TopStyle Pro for CSS, and UltraEdit for column mode operations and scripting.

  Hi everybody, I'm new here.
  Jeff Roberson :^)

p.s. Komodo Edit/IDE is quite powerful and does work well, but it is what you might call... bloated? - (i.e. it installs more than 7000+ files in 400+ folders totaling more than 150MB!)

p.s.2. And one more thing (and this is what led me to this forum in the first place), if you need some good screencasting software (at a price you can't ignore), Blueberry Software's BB Flashback Express is now free!
« Last Edit: April 11, 2009, 11:55:23 PM by widgewunner »

kartal

  • Supporting Member
  • Joined in 2008
  • **
  • Posts: 1,529
    • View Profile
    • Donate to Member
Re: Windows editors - do they have to be so bad?
« Reply #46 on: April 11, 2009, 11:58:56 PM »
I am not a programmer, maybe a scripter at best so I do not have huge needs. That is why I thought Komodo edit was neat(also free:)) The only thing I miss is an integrated debugger for Python. For that I just set external python debugger which works ok but  definetely I would have preferred an internal debugger .

mwb1100

  • Supporting Member
  • Joined in 2006
  • **
  • Posts: 1,522
    • View Profile
    • Donate to Member
Re: Windows editors - do they have to be so bad?
« Reply #47 on: April 12, 2009, 01:08:42 AM »
I used the Komodo IDE for a while a year ago at a previous job. My main use for it was Perl scripting, and the thing that made me convince my employer to buy it (Komodo IDE is pretty pricey) was the debugger - I couldn't find anything else that did Perl debugging so easily and nicely, especially for someone like me who is not particularly experienced with Perl.

Unfortunately, Komodo Edit does not have the debugger, and I don't think I have enough experience with it (particularly for Python) to out-and-out recommend it.  But,

  • the search capabilities are quite good
  • ActiveState provides good support (I think this extends to Komodo Edit, too)
  • it's free, so give it a spin and see if it grabs you

rjbull

  • Charter Member
  • Joined in 2005
  • ***
  • default avatar
  • Posts: 2,927
    • View Profile
    • Donate to Member
Re: EditPad Pro +1
« Reply #48 on: April 12, 2009, 03:39:43 PM »
EditpadPro +1
Pros: (first answering rjbull's requirements...)

Bookmarks - either 10 per file or 10 per project. Sorry, no "Next bookmark" hotkey.

That's quite important.  How am I supposed to remember which hotkey is assigned to which bookmark?  I wouldn't mind if "next bookmark" could be a macro rather than a native feature.  10 bookmarks per file is a bit meagre (same in Boxer), though in practice I'd try to minimise the number.

Quote
Flexible tools integration with configurable stdin/stdout/stderr I/O. (is this what you mean by Filters?)

EditPad Pro actually has what I mean by filters  :)  it's on the Web site.

Quote
Portable - can be installed on memory stick with all config in INI file.
Generous license to the user allows installation on multiple computers.

I noticed that.  EmEditor is cheaper, Boxer more expensive, and both of them are single-installation licenses.  Both of them can be made portable, but I'd (much) rather have EditPad Pro's more generous approach.

Quote
Text "snippets" - hard to describe but easy to get dependent upon.

That's not unique, but appears to be particularly well implemented.

Quote
No scripting language support.

I'm not a coder, and don't really want to have to learn Java or whatever...  I'd like it to have its own simple macro language, with editable files.  I understand it currently uses all-but-impenetrable INI files, which is a pity.


Actually, I regret not purchasing an EditPad Pro license when it was on Bits du Jour...  but I have a reminder running in case it turns up a second time   :)

broken85

  • Supporting Member
  • Joined in 2006
  • **
  • Posts: 88
    • View Profile
    • Donate to Member
Re: Windows editors - do they have to be so bad?
« Reply #49 on: April 12, 2009, 04:45:44 PM »
Speaking up for EmEditor again :)

Its licensing is not per-installation, but per-user. They actually apparently offer two types of licensing; per-user (one user, many computers) or per-computer (one machine, many users). My license is per-user, and the license allows you to install it on 5 machines (no activation or anything, just a key code check).

Since I bought a License for EmEditor back in version 5 or 6, and it's still good in version 8, it's quite generous :)
--
Ben M