Even better notepad.exe

From Roy Osherove.

Notepad is one of the apps I  use most on Windows. It's especially handy for removing formatting from text, storing quick snippets and so on. However, it was probably written in 1995 and hasn't changed since.

Notepad2 is a FANTASTIC app, has a toolbar with buttons ;-), looks like it belongs on XP and is free! You can even set the window to be transparent. It's got a ton of awesome features.

I just copied it to C:\WINDOWS so I can open it from the command line. You can't actually replace notepad.exe cause Windows File Protection will restore the original version.

Comments (14)
  1. James says:

    Excellent program. I can’t believe something with all that functionality still starts up instantaneously!

    If you want to get around Windows File Protection and completely replace the orginal notepad with it read this little section from the metapad faq.


  2. karl says:

    as far as I’m concerned, EditPadPro can’t be beat:


    there’s a powerful free version too.

  3. Todd Spatafore says:

    Thanks for the tip. It’d be nice if I could open multiple files at once though (ala EditPad). But I like the "Second Default Scheme"

  4. Omar Shahine says:


    Uncheck Settings->Reuse Window

  5. Todd Spatafore says:


    good call, still would like to have tabs, pretty good though, I’ve been using it all day and it truly is a transparent replacement/upgrade for notepad.

  6. Calc and Notepad changed. Did you notice?

  7. Here’s a mondo list of editors to choose from, in case someone wants something other than Notepad2 =)


  8. Joku says:

    There’s no problem replacing files protected by the file protection, just go to command line and copy the new notepad to system32 and system32dllcache under about 2 seconds and windows won’t notice a thing.

    One bad thing about the Notepad2 is that cause it’s based on Scintilla ( http://www.scintilla.org/ ) (it’s scintilla actually, just with Notepad-looks) – the scintilla component doesn’t support the middle button scrolling that’s the Big Feature of why I always used IE instead of (other browser which implements it poorly- opera, mozilla etc).

  9. Richard says:


    Could you elaborate on that, because I am using Notepad2 here under Windows XP Pro with a usb optical scroll mouse and the scroll wheel works fine for me. Or are you talking about clicking the middle button to bring up that automatic scroll when you move the mouse up and down? No, I can’t do that, but to me that is no big deal. FYI, this feature works much better in Firefox than before if you want to check it out.

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