Text Editors for PC: Part 1

Last week I wrote an article comparing three common text editors for Mac computers; as you may have guessed, this week I’ll be doing another quick comparison of three editors, but this time we’ll be looking ones designed for PC computers. Hopefully you will find this information helpful in your decision-making process.

Notepad Notepad++ Sublime Text 2
Price Free Free $70*
Open Source No Yes No
Syntax Highlighting No Yes Yes
Find and Replace Yes Yes Yes
Bracket Matching No Yes Yes
Auto Indention No Yes Yes
Auto Completion No Yes Yes
Spell Checking No Yes Yes

* You must pay a fee for the license, but a free version is available

Notepad: Like TextEdit for Mac, Notepad is a Windows-only application that already exists on most PC computers. Again like TextEdit, its functionality is very basic, lacking a lot of the features that Notepad++ and Sublime both share (such as syntax highlighting, spell checking, etc.). However, it is a very light and fast text editor, making it extremely useful for quick editing. But you shouldn’t use it for large amounts of content creation or coding needed for large-scale projects.

Notepad++: This text editor is a big step up from Notepad; still pretty lightweight, but it adds on a bunch of features that Notepad lacks. Multiple files can be opened at once and navigable through tabs, and coding is made simpler through syntax highlighting, spell checking, line numbers, etc. For a free text editor that has so many more features over regular old Notepad, it’s very much worth the download.

Sublime Text 2: Sublime has all the features of Notepad++, but with so much more added onto it. Viewing tabbed files side-by-side within the same window is a breeze (useful if you’re trying to compare code between files), and you can even open entire projects in the editor and preview each file with the directory structure outlined beside the editor. There are even some nice-to-have features such as a customizable interface, and a “distraction-free” mode that allows you to enter a full-screen view of the editor, removing sidebars, tabs, and other possible distractions. Best of all, Sublime is a text editor that also works on Mac, so users can work seamlessly between Mac and PC.

Out of these three text editors, you could argue that Sublime Text 2 beats out Notepad and Notepad++ simply because it offers more features than the other two, and I probably wouldn’t disagree with you. Yet, again it is about the size of your project and what you need to accomplish your tasks; if you’re working with a small project and just need some basic functionality to get things going, stick with your already-installed Notepad, but if you’re working on a large-scale project that demands organization, consider Notepad++ or Sublime.

Sources: [ Notepad++ ], [ Comparison of Text Editors ]

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