EmEditor v21.2.0 released (including technical review)!

Today, we are releasing EmEditor v21.2.

Some customer asked me to write a technical review on major releases, and I thought it’s good idea. Many customer interactions and reasons often exist behind all new features, and I would like to share those behind the scenes stories with you, which might not fit in formal release notes.

First of all, I think many people would welcome the fact that this new version (v21.2) includes many new features for the Free version (EmEditor Free). In the past, my focus was updating the product for paid customers. However, more free text editors become available these days, and I want more users use EmEditor as an alternative to other free text editors. Some users wrote not-so-good reviews just because the Free version lacks many features that were available only for the Pro version. The new Free version features on v21.2 include Bookmarks, Markers, Compare files (with default options only), Spelling, Numbering, Full screen view, Workspaces, Macros (Record and Run only, no scriptable macros), Outline, Start window, and many options in configuration properties. In the past, some users complain that the process to downgrade from Pro to Free is confusing. In recent versions, the Downgrade and Upgrade commands exist on the Help menu, but the default was still Pro version. There is no default on v21.2 anymore. When EmEditor is launched for the first time after a fresh install, a new dialog box to select EmEditor Professional or EmEditor Free appears, and you can start using is as the Free version without even finding the Downgrade command.

Second, v21.2 includes the new Repeat Steps feature. This idea initially came from an informal talk with Mado-no-mori editors in Tokyo before the pandemic. They suggested using AI to detect next movements of EmEditor. I didn’t want to create any significant background tasks in EmEditor just to make the app slow down (remember Office assistant Clipper?), but I agree that some repetitive tasks should be simplified more easily. When you have repetitive tasks in a text editor, experienced users know how to record them as a macro, and repeat the macro as many times as necessary. However, it is often true that you want to try those steps without recording a macro first. By the time you decide to record steps as a macro, it’s often already half done, and you just want to finish the repetition without thinking more. The new Repeat Steps feature comes handy in this situation. Usually if you repeat certain task 3 times (might be adjusted in the future), a notification tip appears with the Enter Repeat Count hyperlink. Clicking on the link brings up the Repeat dialog box, where you can specify the number of times to repeat the steps. You can also select the Repeat Steps command on the Edit menu to bring up the Repeat dialog box without waiting for the notification tip appears. Basically, v21.2 permanently records a macro no matter the Start Recording command is turned on, and you will just need to pick a starting point of the macro when you want to repeat the recent steps.

Another convenient feature I’ve come up with is the Assign Keyboard Shortcut command displayed on the right-click menu on almost all menu items and toolbar buttons. This command opens the Keyboard page of Properties for All Configurations, and the command you right-clicked is pre-selected. This should save some time to find the command in the Keyboard page of configuration properties. From v21.2, All Configurations becomes the default setting for the Keyboard Map. It was a little confusing in the past that EmEditor allows you to assign keyboard shortcuts both only for the current configuration and for all configurations. I don’t believe most users would care assigning shortcuts for a particular configuration, so I wanted to make All Configurations the default for keyboard assignments.

Some customer complained that EmEditor didn’t show (0x93, U+201C) and (0x94, U+201D) characters in Western European HTML files correctly, and the HTML file had the charset=iso-8859-1 tag. The customer already acknowledged that this was due to difference in encoding in the ISO-8859-1 and the supserset Windows-1252 encodings. In fact, and characters were not defined in the ISO-8859-1 encoding, but defined in the Windows-1252 encoding. The fact is that many Western European HTML files were often mislabeled as iso-8859-1 while they should be labelled as windows-1252. According to the WHATWG community Living Standard, HTML5 interprets these HTML files as Windows-1252 encoding even if they are labeled as ISO-8859-1, and so does EmEditor v21.2 if the Detect HTML/XML Charset option is set.

There are a lot more stories while developing v21.2, but I will end this blog with introducing the new Notification feature when the Auto Copy feature is on when EmEditor is launched. I sometimes receive emails when their Copy and Paste went something wrong. This is most likely caused by the Auto Copy feature being turned on without their notice or being forgotten to turn off. So the new Notification will remind users that the Auto Copy feature is on.

I know some people are anxious about updating their OS to Windows 11. I usually trust my neighbors in Redmond, but this time, I don’t know. A customer has reported an issue related to this particular Windows 11 bug. EmEditor allows a user to select non-ASCII names for configurations and file types to be associated with EmEditor, and these names will become Registry keys. I would recommend waiting for a little while until Windows 11 becomes stable.

Finally, I hope you like EmEditor, whether you use it as Professional or Free version. Please contact us or write forums if you have any questions, feature requests, or any ideas in the future. I also welcome you to write a review, which I read them periodically. You might need to download the Store App version before you are able to write a review.

Thank you for using EmEditor!
Yutaka Emura

Please see EmEditor v21.2 New Features for details and screenshots.

This release also includes following bug/issue fix:

  • Fixed a potential crash when opening a very large file on a certain computer such as a virtual computer.
  • Fixed a CSS/HTML Validator issue where it shows an error at Hiragana/Katakana only title tags.

If you use the Desktop Installer version, you can select Check for Updates on the Help to download the newest version. If this method fails, please download the newest version, and run the downloaded installer. If you use the Desktop portable version, you can go to the Download page to download the newest version. The Store App versions can be updated through Microsoft Store (64-bit or 32-bit) after a few days. If you use winget, you can type “winget install emeditor” to install the latest version of EmEditor (64-bit or 32-bit detected automatically).