Best Sublime Text Alternatives

Sublime Text is one of the most popular source code editors used by most programmers worldwide. It comes with amazing features, huge variety of plugins and cool UI. Unfortunately, this source code editor is not for everybody. For one, it is not offered for free. Once the evaluation period is done, you will have to purchase license which costs $80. Another reason for Sublime Text not being for everybody is it is a proprietary software which most FOSS proponents find unpalatable. These few reasons alone would make some look for something that they could use as an alternative for Sublime Text and if you are one of them, we recommend that you check below the list of best alternatives for Sublime Text.

1. Notepadd++

If you are looking for a source code editor that supports programming languages under MS Windows environment, then, Notepadd++ is for you. This source code editor uses Scintilla editor component. In addition to that, it is also written in C++ with Win32 API using STL which increases its performance and reduce its program size. Furthermore, this software comes with easy to use and simple UI. This means, if you are just starting to do coding, Notepadd++ is highly recommended for you. It also comes with syntax highlighting, search/replace, syntax folding, synchronized scrolling, split screen editing and multi- document tab interface. Also, it comes with limited auto completion for scripting, markup languages and programming. Though this is the case, you will have to take note that Notepadd++ does not support syntax checking and intelligent code completion.

Notepad++ is licensed under GNU GPL which is hosted by TuxFamily. In 2010, the US government included this software under International Traffic in Arms Regulations which means this software has become restricted to users in Iran, Cuba, Sudan, Syria and North Korea. Hence, with that, Notepadd++ became only available on Windows.

2. BBEdit 13

BBEdit 13 is well-known for being one of the best professional HTML and text editor for macOS. It comes with intelligent interface which provides cool features such as search and replace, grep pattern matching, project definition tools, syntax coloring, function navigation and code folding. In addition to that, it also supports syntax highlighting of popular computer languages such as C++, ANSI C, HTML, Fortran 95, JSP, Java, JavaScript, Object Pascal, Lasso, PHP, Python, Perl, SQL, Ruby, YAML, XML and CSS. It also offers customization features as well.

3. Atom

A free, open source Atom is another code editor option. It is highly customizable and comes with 50 open source packages. This code editor is hosted on GitHub and is based on Electron framework which was created by Cheng Zhao. It is also written in HTML/CSS.

Though Atom has only been created in 2014, this software already has about 7,000 different packages. Moreover, it also has a drag and drop action for folders and files in tree view. It also has a split pane for all its editing features and its plugins are compatible with C, C#, Java, C++, Python and SQL.

4. Vim

Vim is another open source and cross platform command line text editor which is offered for free. This text editor is available and compatible with Linux, Windows, macOS and Unix to iOS, Android, Amigaos and many more. This version of editor is an improved version and a clone of Vi text editor program for Unix. It has about 15,000 packages such as syntax highlighters, tree explorers and theming.

If you choose Vim, you will need to take note that it does not have a GUI which will allow you to use a mouse. Hence, you will need to navigate, close, open, edit and save through the use of keyboard shortcuts. Though this is the case, Vim is still one of the most flexible source code editors.

5. Visual Studio Code

Developed by Microsoft, Visual Studio Code is a FOSS source code editor and debugger which is hosted on Github. Though Visual Studio Code is developed by Microsoft, this source code editor is available not only on Windows but also on Linux and macOS. Aside from that, Visual Studio Code also supports syntax highlighting, code refactoring, snippets and intelligent code completion.

Visual Studio Code allows its users to customize editor’s theme, preferences and keyboard shortcuts. It is also based on the Electron framework which uses HTML/CSS and Node and it employs Monaco as well. Aside from that, this source code editor supports programming languages such as PHP, C, C++, C#, JSON, HTML, Objective-C++ and Objective-C. It also is compatible with wide array of plugins and it also comes with built-in extension management.

6. Spacemacs

Spacemacs is one of the most popular starter kits of Emacs which means just like other products of Emacs, it is extensible and customizable. Its UIs are command-line and graphical as well which are both executable under X display manager and Unix terminal. Its default leader key is the spacebar and has the ability to highlight syntaxes.

7. Light Table

Known as the next generation code editor, Light Table comes with real-time evaluation, instant execution, flexible interface, documentation and debugging features. This source code editor is offered for free and is an open source program released under MIT License. Light Table is written

in ClojureScript and supports other programming languages such as JavaScript, Python, CSS and HTML. Furthermore, it also comes with auto-complete feature, command palette and split viewing.

8. Brackets

Brackets is another option if you are looking for an open source and free software. It is licensed under MIT and is hosted on GitHub. It supports HTML, JavaScript, Python, Ruby, Perl, C, C++ and CSS. This software is available on MacOS, Windows and Linux. Through Brackets, you will be able to quick edit, split view, live preview and theseus integration.

9. TextMate 2.0

For Mac users, TextMate 2.0 is a perfect free sublime text alternative. It comes with rich features such as support for version control, robust search, multiple carrots, snippets and macros.

10. UltraEdit

UltraEdit is available on macOS, Windows and Linux. It comes with built-in themes and allows its users to create their own themes as well. It also has multi-caret editing features and has multi-selection capabilities. It is compatible with various programming languages such as Python, PHP, Perl, Javascript, XML, C, Objective C and many more.

Bonus: Eclipse

Eclipse is another FOSS free open source code editor and a full-fledged cross platform IDE. It is available on Solaris, Windows, Linux and macOS. It supports various programming languages such as COBOL, C, C#, C++, PHP, Java and many more. Aside from that, Eclipse comes with debugging tools and Git/CVS support. It also comes with options of tools for modeling, charting, reporting, building GUIs and testing.


Though Sublime Text is amazing, it is not for everybody especially for those who are on tight budget. Hence, if you are looking for alternatives, we hope we were able to help you find one that would suit your code editing needs.

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