8 Lesser Known Yet Awesome Text Editors

Last Updated on December 10, 2018

One of the strengths of Linux is the huge range of software. That is, after all, one of the reasons why users are attracted to Linux in the first place. Having the opportunity to select from a plethora of software and select the ones that meet an individual’s needs still makes good sense. Having hundreds of open source text editors, file managers, integrated development environments, backup tools, databases, web browsers, FTP clients increases the likelihood of applications existing that really do what a user wants. Further, even where a developer only reinvents the wheel by creating a very simple application, it is still a valuable learning experience, and from these little acorns, mighty oaks may grow.

Irrespective of the operating system used, the text editor is one of those quintessential applications for many users. A text editor is software used for editing plain text files. Text editors are used to write programming code, change configuration files, take notes, and more. For this feature, we wanted to select alternative text editors which are definitely worth trying but may have been missed given that they receive less coverage in Linux publications, and are not included or installed by default in many Linux distributions.

The text editors featured below come highly recommended. All open source goodness.

Lesser Known Text Editors
HowlFast and lightweight editor with a keyboard-centric minimalistic user interface
meditFull-featured text editor
microModern and intuitive terminal-based text editor
textosaurusSimple cross-platform text editor based on Qt and Scintilla
KakouneImplements Vi’s "keystrokes as a text editing language" model
NeovimContinuation and extension of Vim
ampComplete text editor for your terminal
visvi-like editor based on Plan 9's structural regular expressions

Eagle-eyed readers will notice a few of the text editors featured above are extensions of the Vim text editor. If you want to learn about Vim, read these great books, all released under open source licenses.

Best Free and Open Source SoftwareRead our complete collection of recommended free and open source software. Our curated compilation covers all categories of software.

The software collection forms part of our series of informative articles for Linux enthusiasts. There are hundreds of in-depth reviews, open source alternatives to proprietary software from large corporations like Google, Microsoft, Apple, Adobe, IBM, Cisco, Oracle, and Autodesk.

There are also fun things to try, hardware, free programming books and tutorials, and much more.
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