Notepad++ vs. Sublime: Which Should You Use?

BestColleges.com is an advertising-supported site. Featured or trusted partner programs and all school search, finder, or match results are for schools that compensate us. This compensation does not influence our school rankings, resource guides, or other editorially-independent information published on this site.

Ready to start your journey?

portrait of Sharon Wilfong
by Sharon Wilfong

Published August 25, 2022

Reviewed by Monali Mirel Chuatico

Our Review Network

BestColleges is committed to delivering content that is objective and accurate. We have built a network of industry professionals across healthcare and education to review our content and ensure we are providing the best information to our readers.

With their first-hand industry experience, our reviewers provide an extra step in our editing process. These experts:

  • Suggest changes to inaccurate or misleading information.
  • Provide specific, corrective feedback.
  • Identify critical information that writers may have missed.

Our growing Review Network currently consists of professionals in fields like business, nursing, social work, and other subject-specific industries; professionals in higher education areas such as college counseling and financial aid; and anti-bias reviewers.

Reviewers typically work full time in their industry profession and review content for BestColleges as a side project. Our reviewers are members of the Red Ventures Education Freelance Review Network and are paid for their contributions.

See a full list of our Review Network contributors.

Edited by Madison Hoehn
Share this Article


Notepad++ and Sublime Text are code editors and indispensable tools in the software programming and web development world. You might wonder, what is Sublime vs. Notepad++, and are there any differences between the two?

At its core, a text editor is a simple computer program that allows users to create and edit text files. Text editors were mainly tools to create plain text documents in the past.

Today, software and web developers use code editors such as Notepad++ and Sublime to edit source code. For example, a web developer might use Notepad++ to edit hypertext markup language (HTML) and create webpages.

Most text editors, including the default Windows Notepad, provide line and word wrapping functions. However, developers often use more advanced code editors because of the customization options.

Analysts and data scientists often use advanced code editors like Sublime to work with files written in Python and SQL.

What Is Notepad++?

Notepad++ is a free, open-source general public license text and source code editor that replaces Notepad. It runs in Microsoft Windows, enabling changes to a text file and ensuring higher execution speed.

This code editor provides easy-to-understand customization tools that are robust enough for advanced applications in multiple programming languages. In addition, the auto-completion settings can save time.

This popular text editor offers powerful editing components in a compact package with a customizable user interface. It supports around 80 programming languages, including C++, JavaScript, PHP, SQL, and Python.

The "++" refers to the increment operator in programming languages such as C++ and JavaScript. Writing code and manipulating text in Notepad++ is easy because it uses syntax highlighting and folding.

Its user-defined languages interface allows you to define rules for formatting standard text and defining delimiters. For example, parentheses around a list will format the text between the delimiters into a list.

What Is Sublime?

Sublime is an advanced code editor for Mac, Windows, and Linux. This code editor offers low resource usage while providing more advanced features.

It boasts a fluid user interface up to 8K resolution while using less power than previous versions. Sublime's primary benefit is its shortcuts and search tools that enable users to find specific functions immediately.

For example, Sublime offers a customizable layout, split-editing, the ability to switch between projects, and a distraction-free mode. The file tabs provide an easy split view with interface support and built-in commands.

Sublime also automatically indexes functions and methods to work with the shortcuts, allowing users to search a file quickly and efficiently. Goto Anything, Goto Definition, and auto-complete make code navigation intuitive.

In addition, Sublime supports various programming languages, including HTML, CSS, Java, and SQL. It is also extensible, with plug-ins that provide functionality. You can use a plug-in to support additional programming languages or change an interface theme.

Sublime vs. Notepad++

Notepad++ vs. Sublime: They're both highly popular code editors, with differences worth comparing, depending on your objectives. The following are a few ways they differ.

Price

In both cases, Notepad is free, whether it's Notepad vs. Sublime Text or Notepad++ vs. Sublime Text. Although Notepad++ is a third-party code editor, it's open source under the GNU general public license.

This means that Notepad++ is free to share and change for all users. On the other hand, users may download and evaluate Sublime Text for free. You must purchase a license for $99, although there's no time limit on evaluating the code editor. Also, a Sublime license is valid only for the current version.

Paying for Sublime is worth it because it's a low fee, and the license is good across computers and operating systems. Sublime's upgrade policy mentions that personal licenses do not expire and come with three years of updates. However, people must pay for an upgrade to access any versions released three years or more after their initial purchase date.

Project Type

The type and scope of a project are significant factors in choosing Notepad++ vs. Sublime. While all desktop operating systems provide a basic text editor, they typically lack special features.

A code editor is necessary to create and edit a website when writing in a programming language like JavaScript. Third-party editors offer features including auto-completion and code search that make the process more efficient.

For example, Notepad is a built-in editor in the Windows operating system, but Notepad++ is a third-party editor. It's open-source and free to download.

Notepad++ is easier to learn and understand than most other options, so it's a good choice for beginners. And it offers syntax highlighting for HTML, PHP, and JavaScript.

Sublime Text runs on multiple platforms, including Linux, Mac, and Windows, providing powerful shortcuts such as modifying multiple lines. It's an excellent choice for projects that require heavy coding and a high level of customization and has cross-platform abilities.

Programming Language

Both Notepad++ and Sublime are compatible with languages such as HTML and Java. Notepad++ runs around 80 languages, and it can compile C++.

However, Sublime can run over 80 computer languages, and it can also compile C++ and Python. Sublime offers plug-ins that expand its capabilities to compile and run code for various languages.

While you can use Sublime with many programming languages, its Python support is one of the best. Sublime is written in C++ and Python, making it fast, with plenty of customization options.

Notepad++ is a good choice as an HTML editor with a clean user interface. The editor also provides a mobile version without needing to install Windows.

Notepad++ ensures fast processing speed because of its lighter program size, and it has powerful code editing tools. It also offers plug-in integrations to add more advanced features and a document map to make it easier to navigate within larger files.

How Do I Choose?

When choosing between Sublime vs. Notepad++, there are many considerations. Text editors serve various purposes and work on different servers.

Notepad++ is limited to the Windows environment, while Sublime Text can run on Linux, Mac, and Windows. Another thing to think about is the career you're pursuing.

Frequently Asked Questions About Notepad++ and Sublime

Is Sublime good for beginners?

Sublime Text is suitable for beginners because it's one of the most widely used code editors. Free tutorials are easy to start, and Sublime provides tech support and a documentation index online.

Even though you will eventually have to pay to use it, Swift offers a trial period so that you can evaluate the editor. Its primary benefit for beginners and professionals is the shortcuts like auto-complete, making code navigation intuitive.

Search tools, interface support, and built-in commands are intuitive functions that make Sublime easier for beginners. For example, the code editor also automatically indexes functions and methods, providing shortcuts so you can find a file quickly.

Can I run Python on Notepad++?

Notepad++ is a code editor for Microsoft Windows that runs around 80 programming languages, including C++, JavaScript, JAVA, JSON, and Python. This code editor offers valuable features, such as creating shortcuts to program calls, like a Run Python menu item.

Notepad++ can use program calls to execute Python code without switching to another window to run a Python shell. It uses indentation guides that enable you to run Python using indentation levels instead of braces to define functional code blocks.

In addition, the code editor can group sections of code and hide the blocks to make the code easier to read.

Can Sublime Text run HTML?

Sublime supports many programming languages, including HTML. It can run HTML directly in your browser as a .html extension.

Sublime's website and the community provide free resources to help you learn how to run HTML.

For example, for Win platform, use Goto:

A default command opens such as { "cmd":["make"] }

Replace the command with:

{

"cmd":["PATH_TO_CHROME_OR_FIREFOX","$file"]

Save the file.

Similarly, if you want to run HTML with Sublime Text on Google Chrome:

Go to tools:

Replace the default command with:

{

"cmd":["PATH_TO_CHROME","$file"]

}

Save the file as Chrome.sublime-build.


Feature Image: Morsa Images / DigitalVision / Getty Images


BestColleges.com is an advertising-supported site. Featured or trusted partner programs and all school search, finder, or match results are for schools that compensate us. This compensation does not influence our school rankings, resource guides, or other editorially-independent information published on this site.

Compare your school options.

View the most relevant school for your interests and compare them by tuition, programs, acceptance rate, and other factors important to find your college home.