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  1<?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?>
  2<section id="general">
  3    <title>General Questions</title>
  4    <!-- jEdit buffer-local properties:                      -->
  5    <!-- :indentSize=4:noTabs=false:maxLineLen=72:tabSize=4: -->
  6    <!-- :xml.root=faq.xml:                                  -->
  7    <!-- jEdit FAQ                                           -->
  8    <para>This section deals with some background information, how to obtain the
  9    latest version of jEdit and how to obtain further information/help.</para>
 10    <qandaset defaultlabel="qanda">
 11        <qandadiv id="about">
 12            <title>About jEdit</title>
 13            <qandaentry>
 14                <question id="whatis">
 15                    <para>What is jEdit?</para>
 16                </question>
 17                <answer>
 18                    <para>jEdit is a programmer's text editor written in Java,
 19                    originally developed by Slava Pestov, now maintained by
 20                    others. It has an easy to use interface that resembles that
 21                    of many other Windows and MacOS text editors. It is also
 22                    highly customizable, and contains a <quote>plugin</quote>
 23                    architecture that allows its features to be extended by
 24                    additional programs.</para>
 25                </answer>
 26            </qandaentry>
 27            <qandaentry>
 28                <question id="difftext">
 29                    <para>What is the difference between a text editor and a
 30                    word processor?</para>
 31                </question>
 32                <answer>
 33                    <para>These categories are not absolute but refer to the
 34                    primary purpose of an editing program and the focus of its
 35                    features.</para>
 36                    <para>A text editor is an application that edits files
 37                    containing plain text without automatically formatting the
 38                    text for printing or other publication. Typically the
 39                    contents of such a file consists of data used by another
 40                    application - for example, source code that a compiler will
 41                    process or markup text that a web browser will display. A
 42                    word processor deals with the preparation of documents for
 43                    printing or similar publication. Besides editing text, a
 44                    modern word processor allows the user to choose multiple
 45                    fonts, margin sizes, line spacing, indentation, and a
 46                    variety of other details that affect the appearance of the
 47                    document being edited. In a text editor, these features are
 48                    present, if at all, only in a basic form, and for the
 49                    limited purpose of helping the user compose and organize the
 50                    text. In place of word processing features, a text editor
 51                    contains many features that allow the user to prepare and
 52                    work with text quickly and efficiently.</para>
 53                    <para>The jEdit application is a text editor, not a word
 54                    processor. It contains a large assortment of features for
 55                    manipulating source code, markup text, and other text files.
 56                    As a programmer's text editor, it also has many features to
 57                    help programmers manage their projects and work with other
 58                    programming tools.</para>
 59                </answer>
 60            </qandaentry>
 61            <qandaentry>
 62                <question id="features">
 63                    <para>What features does jEdit have?</para>
 64                </question>
 65                <answer>
 66                    <para>The short answer is, too many to list here. There is a
 67                    detailed list available on the <ulink
 68                    url="">jEdit web
 69                    site</ulink>, but here are some of the major
 70                    features:</para>
 71                    <itemizedlist>
 72                        <listitem>
 73                            <para>Comprehensive online help</para>
 74                        </listitem>
 75                        <listitem>
 76                            <para>Multiple editor windows and split editing panes
 77                            within a single editing window</para>
 78                        </listitem>
 79                        <listitem>
 80                            <para>Unlimited undo/redo</para>
 81                        </listitem>
 82                        <listitem>
 83                            <para>Copy and paste with an unlimited number of
 84                            clipboards (known as <quote>registers</quote>)</para>
 85                        </listitem>
 86                        <listitem>
 87                            <para><quote>Markers</quote> for remembering
 88                            positions in files to return to later</para>
 89                        </listitem>
 90                        <listitem>
 91                            <para>Rectangular selection</para>
 92                        </listitem>
 93                        <listitem>
 94                            <para>Multiple selection for manipulating several
 95                            chunks of text at once</para>
 96                        </listitem>
 97                        <listitem>
 98                            <para>Syntax highlighting for more than 80 file
 99                            types</para>
100                        </listitem>
101                        <listitem>
102                            <para>Intelligent bracket matching that skips quoted
103                            literals and comments</para>
104                        </listitem>
105                        <listitem>
106                            <para>Auto indent and word wrap</para>
107                        </listitem>
108                        <listitem>
109                            <para>Abbreviations</para>
110                        </listitem>
111                        <listitem>
112                            <para><quote>Folding</quote> display mode that hides
113                            levels of indented text specified by the user</para>
114                        </listitem>
115                        <listitem>
116                            <para>Search and replace using both literal text and
117                            regular expressions</para>
118                        </listitem>
119                        <listitem>
120                            <para><quote>HyperSearch</quote> option to show all
121                            found matches in a list</para>
122                        </listitem>
123                        <listitem>
124                            <para>File management functions available from within
125                            jEdit, including deleting and renaming files and
126                            creating new directories</para>
127                        </listitem>
128                        <listitem>
129                            <para>Choice of character encoding for loading and
130                            saving files</para>
131                        </listitem>
132                        <listitem>
133                            <para>Automatic compression and decompression of
134                            GZipped (.gz) files</para>
135                        </listitem>
136                        <listitem>
137                            <para>Plugin support for loading files from ZIP and
138                            TAR archives</para>
139                        </listitem>
140                        <listitem>
141                            <para>Plugin support for loading and saving files on
142                            FTP servers</para>
143                        </listitem>
144                        <listitem>
145                            <para>Fully customizable keyboard shortcuts, tool bar
146                            and right-click context menu</para>
147                        </listitem>
148                        <listitem>
149                            <para>Macro system permitting recording and writing
150                            of macros in the BeanShell scripting language</para>
151                        </listitem>
152                        <listitem>
153                            <para>An internal <quote>plugin manager</quote> that
154                            downloads and installs new and updated plugins from
155                            within jEdit</para>
156                        </listitem>
157                    </itemizedlist>
158                </answer>
159            </qandaentry>
160            <qandaentry>
161                <question id="what-plugin">
162                    <para>What is a jEdit <quote>plugin</quote>?</para>
163                </question>
164                <answer>
165                    <para>A plugin is an application that is designed to work
166                    with jEdit by providing additional features that can be used
167                    from within the main program. Often the plugin will provide
168                    a visible user interface in a window that can be docked to
169                    jEdit's main view window.</para>
170                    <para>There are currently over 120 publicly available
171                    plugins that provide such services as a Java source code
172                    browser, a command-line shell, templated text insertion, and
173                    source code project management. They can be downloaded,
174                    installed, and kept current from within jEdit's
175                    <quote>Plugin Manager</quote>. There is also a section of
176                    the jEdit web site called <ulink
177                    url="">Plugin Central</ulink> that
178                    maintains a descriptive index and download links for all
179                    publicly available plugins.</para>
180                    <para>Additional questions and answers regarding plugins may
181                    be found in the section of this document entitled
182                    <quote>Working with Plugins</quote>.</para>
183                </answer>
184            </qandaentry>
185            <qandaentry>
186                <question id="get-doc">
187                    <para>How do I get documentation on jEdit?</para>
188                </question>
189                <answer>
190                    <para>There is a comprehensive User's Guide available from
191                    within the program using the <guimenu>Help</guimenu> menu.
192                    The User's Guide can also be downloaded from the <ulink
193                    url=";platform=source">
194                    jEdit web site</ulink> in Portable Document Format (PDF),
195                    suitable for online display or printing.</para>
196                </answer>
197            </qandaentry>
198            <qandaentry>
199                <question id="is-newsgroup">
200                    <para>Is there a newsgroup or mailing list devoted to
201                    jEdit?</para>
202                </question>
203                <answer>
204                    <para>Currently there is no newsgroup devoted to jEdit.
205                    There are three active mailing lists that are freely
206                    available by subscription:</para>
207                    <itemizedlist>
208                        <listitem>
209                            <para>The <ulink
210                            url="">
211                            jedit-users list</ulink>, for comments and questions
212                            about using jEdit and its features</para>
213                        </listitem>
214                        <listitem>
215                            <para>The <ulink
216                            url="">
217                            jedit-devel list</ulink>, for discussion of
218                            development issues by members of the developer team
219                            and other interested persons</para>
220                        </listitem>
221                        <listitem>
222                            <para>The <ulink
223                            url="">
224                            jedit-announce list</ulink>, a low-volume list used
225                            for announcing new releases of jEdit and
226                            plugins</para>
227                        </listitem>
228                    </itemizedlist>
229                    <para>Each of these lists can be obtained on a full-text
230                    message or a daily digest basis. The daily digest bundles
231                    groups of postings in a single email message.</para>
232                    <para>If you are only interested in version announcements
233                    and plugin updates, <ulink
234                    url="">
235                    subscribe to the jedit-announce list</ulink>. If you would
236                    like to participate in discussion or ask questions regarding
237                    jEdit, <ulink
238                    url="">subscribe
239                    to the jedit-users list</ulink>. If you are interested in
240                    jEdit's development or want to write plugins, <ulink
241                    url="">
242                    subscribe to jedit-devel</ulink>.</para>
243                    <para>Do not cross-post to both lists. All jEdit developers
244                    are subscribed to both the jedit-users and jedit-devel
245                    lists, so a post to jedit-users will be seen by most members
246                    of both lists. Also, keep in mind that both jEdit-users and
247                    jEdit-devel are high-traffic lists, and can fill up your
248                    mailbox unless you check your email regularly.</para>
249                </answer>
250            </qandaentry>
251            <qandaentry>
252                <question id="is-website">
253                    <para>Is there a web site devoted to jEdit?</para>
254                </question>
255                <answer>
256                    <para>There are several. The official <ulink
257                    url="">jEdit web site</ulink> contains
258                    extensive information on all things having to do with jEdit.
259                    There are also resources available for those interested in
260                    jEdit development on the <ulink
261                    url="">jEdit project
262                    page</ulink> of the <ulink
263                    url="">SourceForge web
264                    site</ulink>.</para>
265                    <para>The <ulink url="">jEdit
266                    Community</ulink> web site has articles on jEdit and related
267                    topics, user-submitted macros and other download resources,
268                    and listings of web links of interest to jEdit users. It has
269                    a message board system to allow users to ask questions and
270                    provide feedback on the project without having to subscribe
271                    to jEdit's mailing lists. Because the message boards have
272                    relatively low volume, using the mailing lists will often be
273                    a more effective approach.</para>
274                    <para>The jEdit Community site also has an
275                    <quote>Interactive FAQ</quote> facility that allows you to
276                    post questions to be answered by other users, and a
277                    screenshot gallery containing images submitted by
278                    users.</para>
279                </answer>
280            </qandaentry>
281            <qandaentry>
282                <question id="copyright">
283                    <para>Are there copyright restrictions on the use of
284                    jEdit?</para>
285                </question>
286                <answer>
287                    <para>The jEdit application is free, <quote>Open
288                    Source</quote> software released under the <ulink
289                    url="">
290                    GNU General Public License 2.0</ulink>. This ensures that
291                    jEdit and its source code remains freely available for use
292                    and distribution by the public. For specific copyright
293                    questions, you should review the GPL 2.0 and seek
294                    appropriate advice. Broadly speaking, there are no
295                    restrictions on the use of the program as a text editor, and
296                    its source code can be copied or modified for use in another
297                    program that is governed by the General Public
298                    License.</para>
299                    <para>Plugin application that are available using jEdit's
300                    Plugin Manager facility, as well as plugins available
301                    through the <ulink url="">Plugin
302                    Central</ulink> web site or <ulink
303                    url="">jEdit Community</ulink>,
304                    are governed either by the General Public License or another
305                    commonly recognized <quote>Open Source</quote> software
306                    license. This means that use of the application, including
307                    use for commercial purposes, is unrestricted without any
308                    requirement of royalty or license fee payments. To
309                    incorporate source code or an application or plugin as a
310                    whole in another application, you must consult the specific
311                    license terms to determine whether and on what basis you are
312                    permitted to do so.</para>
313                </answer>
314            </qandaentry>
315            <qandaentry>
316                <question id="java-only">
317                    <para>Is jEdit only useful for programming in Java?</para>
318                </question>
319                <answer>
320                    <para>Absolutely not. Many of the jEdit's plugin
321                    applications, and a few of the macros distributed with the
322                    program, target the Java language or integrate tools used in
323                    Java development. However, the core application is designed
324                    to work with any programming or markup language. Included
325                    with jEdit are packages providing syntax highlighting,
326                    abbreviations and other programming support for over 60
327                    programming languages and file types, including C, C++, C#,
328                    Cobol, HTML, Java, Javascript, Lisp, Pascal, Perl, PHP,
329                    Python, Ruby, TCL, Visual Basic and XML. The full list can
330                    be found on the <ulink
331                    url="">jEdit web
332                    site</ulink>.</para>
333                </answer>
334            </qandaentry>
335            <qandaentry>
336                <question id="knowing-java">
337                    <para>Do I need to know Java to use jEdit?</para>
338                </question>
339                <answer>
340                    <para>No. In fact, you do not need to know any specific
341                    programming language other than the ones with which you
342                    work.</para>
343                    <para>At some point in your use of jEdit, you will no doubt
344                    want to write your own macros to execute long or complex
345                    routines with a single command or keyboard shortcut. Macros
346                    in jEdit are written in a simplified dialect of Java called
347                    <ulink url=""> BeanShell</ulink>.
348                    Its syntax will be familiar to users of Java, C++ and other
349                    object-oriented languages, and it is not hard to learn even
350                    if you have no experience with those languages. The User's
351                    Guide provided with jEdit contains an extensive tutorial on
352                    writing macros.</para>
353                </answer>
354            </qandaentry>
355            <qandaentry>
356                <question id="needed-software">
357                    <para>What software do I need to install and run
358                    jEdit?</para>
359                </question>
360                <answer>
361                    <para>Since jEdit runs on a Java platform, at a minimum you
362                    will need a Java Runtime Environment (JRE) package. If you
363                    are planning to use jEdit to program in Java, you will need
364                    a full Java Development Kit (JDK) package. We recommend
365                    obtaining a JDK package.</para>
366                    <para>The current version of jEdit requires a
367                    Java runtime environment having a release version of 1.6 or greater. The <ulink
368                    url="">jEdit
369                    web site</ulink> contains a detailed discussion on the
370                    compatibility of various publicly available JDK's for the
371                    major operating systems.</para>
372                </answer>
373            </qandaentry>
374            <qandaentry>
375                <question id="just-learning">
376                    <para>I've just started to learn programming. Is jEdit a
377                    good choice for my first text editor?</para>
378                </question>
379                <answer>
380                    <para>It is an excellent choice. Its basic features are
381                    extremely easy to use, and you will find things like
382                    abbreviations, keyboard shortcuts and macros to be great
383                    time-savers. It has built-in packages called <quote>edit
384                    modes</quote> that automatically display keywords, tags, and
385                    other program elements in different colors, making it easier
386                    to view and organize your code. It works well with many Open
387                    Source and proprietary programming tools. Because of its
388                    extensive customization features, it can adapt to your
389                    preferences and work patterns as you become more
390                    experienced. Finally, it's free, so you can buy a lot of
391                    programming texts with the money you will save.</para>
392                </answer>
393            </qandaentry>
394        </qandadiv>
395        <!--******************************************************** Answers -->
396        <qandadiv id="get-answers-div">
397            <title>Getting answers</title>
398            <qandaentry>
399                <question id="get-answers">
400                    <para>How do I get answers to my questions about
401                    jEdit?</para>
402                </question>
403                <answer>
404                    <para>You should look for answers in the following
405                    places:</para>
406                    <itemizedlist>
407                        <listitem>
408                            <para>The User's Guide available from the
409                            application's <guimenu>Help</guimenu> menu.</para>
410                        </listitem>
411                        <listitem>
412                            <para>This FAQ document.</para>
413                        </listitem>
414                        <listitem>
415                            <para>The archives of jEdit's mailing lists. Archives
416                            for both the <ulink
417                            url="">
418                            jedit-users list</ulink> and the <ulink
419                            url="">
420                            jedit-devel list</ulink> are available.</para>
421                        </listitem>
422                    </itemizedlist>
423                    <para>If you cannot find help using those resources, post
424                    your question to the <ulink
425                    url=""> jedit-users
426                    list</ulink>. You will have to <ulink
427                    url="">
428                    subscribe to the mailing list</ulink> in order to post, but
429                    it is well worth it, and you can elect to have daily bundles
430                    of messages sent to you to keep email traffic down. Many
431                    questions are answered on the mailing list within 24 hours.
432                    The developers who respond to user questions generally do
433                    not send direct replies, so you will need to monitor
434                    messages from the mailing list is order to obtain an
435                    answer.</para>
436                </answer>
437            </qandaentry>
438            <qandaentry>
439                <question id="interactive-help">
440                    <para>Where can I get interactive help for jEdit?</para>
441                </question>
442                <answer>
443                    <para>There is an IRC channel, <filename>#jedit</filename>,
444                    available on the server that is dedicated
445                    to jEdit support and discussion among developers. You can
446                    reach it using any IRC client (including Chatzilla), as well
447                    as the IRC plugin for jEdit.</para>
448                    <para>There is almost always someone from the developer team
449                    signed on the channel. Just say hello and describe your
450                    problem.</para>
451                </answer>
452            </qandaentry>
453        </qandadiv>
454        <qandadiv id="bugs">
455            <title>Reporting bugs</title>
456            <qandaentry>
457                <question id="report-bugs">
458                    <para>How do I report a bug I have found in jEdit?</para>
459                </question>
460                <answer>
461                    <para>To be as helpful as possible to the jEdit developer
462                    team and other users, you should use the <ulink
463                    url=";atid=100588">
464                    bug tracker database</ulink> that the jEdit project
465                    maintains on the <ulink
466                    url="">SourceForge web site</ulink>.
467                    You need to be a SourceForge member to post a bug
468                    report.</para>
469                    <para>Before posting a bug report, spend a few moments
470                    searching the bug database to see if a similar report has
471                    already been made. The bug tracker has a search facility
472                    that will let search for bug reports using a variety of
473                    criteria. If you find a similar bug report, and you have
474                    additional information to contribute, post a comment to the
475                    report. If you do not find a similar bug report, submit a
476                    new report.</para>
477                </answer>
478            </qandaentry>
479            <qandaentry>
480                <question id="bug-report">
481                    <para>What information should I include in a bug
482                    report?</para>
483                </question>
484                <answer>
485                    <para>The form in the bug tracker report provides several
486                    fields for submitting information. If you are unsure about a
487                    particular item, leave it at the default setting provided in
488                    the form.</para>
489                    <para>The more important fields are <quote>Category</quote>,
490                    <quote>Summary</quote> and the <quote>Initial
491                    comment</quote>. When you write your initial comment
492                    describing the bug, you should specify the versions of
493                    jEdit, the Java platform and operating system you are using,
494                    because bugs often arise that are specific to particular
495                    versions. Sometimes the bug arises from the Java runtime
496                    environment or even the operating system, and knowing these
497                    details helps the developer team design testing and other
498                    debugging strategies.</para>
499                    <para>One of the macros installed with jEdit is called
500                    <guimenuitem>Make Bug Report</guimenuitem>. You will it find
501                    under the <guimenuitem>Misc</guimenuitem> category of the
502                    <guimenu>Macros </guimenu> menu. This macro extracts
503                    information regarding your jEdit installation and a stack
504                    trace from the last error recorded by jEdit's Activity Log
505                    and places it in a new text buffer. In many cases, the
506                    information furnished by the macro is all that is necessary
507                    to provide a helpful description of a bug. You can simply
508                    cut and paste the output of the macro into the
509                    <quote>Initial comment</quote> field of the bug report
510                    form.</para>
511                </answer>
512            </qandaentry>
513            <qandaentry>
514                <question id="bug-track">
515                    <para>How do I track the status of a jEdit bug
516                    report?</para>
517                </question>
518                <answer>
519                    <para>If you know the bug report number, go to this web
520                    address:
521                    <userinput>;aid=######&amp;group_id=588&amp;atid=100588</userinput>,
522                    where <userinput>######</userinput> is the bug report
523                    number. If you don't know the bug report number, you can
524                    browse and search the <ulink
525                    url=";atid=100588">
526                    bug database</ulink> to find the problem in which you are
527                    interested.</para>
528                </answer>
529            </qandaentry>
530        </qandadiv>
531        <qandadiv id="contact">
532            <title>Contacting jEdit developers</title>
533            <qandaentry>
534                <question id="contact-team">
535                    <para>How do I contact members of the jEdit developer
536                    team?</para>
537                </question>
538                <answer>
539                    <para>If you want to ask a question, make a feature request
540                    or offer other general comments, the easiest way is to join
541                    and post a message to the <ulink
542                    url=""> jedit-users
543                    mailing list</ulink>. All developers are members. If you are
544                    interested in working on jEdit or writing a plugin for it,
545                    use the <ulink
546                    url=""> jedit-devel
547                    list</ulink>. Email addresses for individual developers can
548                    be found on the <ulink
549                    url="">
550                    SourceForge web site</ulink>.</para>
551                </answer>
552            </qandaentry>
553        </qandadiv>
554        <qandadiv id="latest-version">
555            <title>Getting the latest version</title>
556            <qandaentry>
557                <question id="get-latest-version">
558                    <para>How do I obtain the latest version of jEdit?</para>
559                </question>
560                <answer>
561                    <para>The program is in a continuing state of evolution. It
562                    is usually available in two versions, a
563                    <quote>stable</quote> version and a
564                    <quote>development</quote> version. A stable version
565                    represents a release of jEdit that is considered to be free
566                    of serious bugs or performance problems and suitable for
567                    general use. A <quote>development</quote> version includes
568                    new features or new elements of program design that require
569                    testing and possible further refinement. A development
570                    version contains the token <quote>pre</quote> in its version
571                    number, as in <literal>4.5pre1</literal>.</para>
572                    <para>The latest stable and development versions of jEdit
573                    are always available from the <ulink
574                    url="">jEdit web site</ulink> and from
575                    the <ulink
576                    url="         projects/jedit">jEdit
577                    project page</ulink> of the <ulink
578                    url="">SourceForge web site</ulink>,
579                    which hosts jEdit's development resources.</para>
580                    <para>In addition, a plugin named <application>Updater</application> can be run from
581                    within jEdit by installing the Updater plugin,
582                    and then selecting <guimenuitem>Updater</guimenuitem>
583                    from the application's <guimenu>Plugins</guimenu> menu. It has actions to update to the latest released version, or the latest daily build from the development branch. It queries the jEdit web site, compares chosen version information
584                    with the version of the currently running instance of jEdit, and reports the result to the user in a message box. If an update is available, it will download the version, install it and shut down jEdit for you. </para>
585                    <para>Finally, if you subscribe to the <ulink
586                    url="">
587                    jedit-announce</ulink> or <ulink
588                    url="">
589                    jedit-users</ulink> mailing lists, you will receive an email
590                    whenever a new release of jEdit becomes available.</para>
591                </answer>
592            </qandaentry>
593            <qandaentry>
594                <question id="get-source">
595                    <para>How do I obtain a copy of the jEdit source
596                    code?</para>
597                </question>
598                <answer>
599                    <para>The latest version of jEdit's source code is available
600                    from the <ulink
601                    url=";platform=source">
602                    jEdit web site</ulink> or the <ulink
603                    url="">
604                    SourceForge web site</ulink>. The web site provides the
605                    source code for the latest stable and development version,
606                    while the SourceForge site has a more extensive archive
607                    covering earlier versions.</para>
608                    <para>If you are interested in testing the absolutely latest
609                    changes to jEdit, and you are familiar with compiling your
610                    own Java programs and working with Subversion, you can
611                    download the current code maintained in the <ulink
612                    url="">SourceForge
613                    SVN repository</ulink>.</para>
614                </answer>
615            </qandaentry>
616            <qandaentry>
617                <question id="get-latest-faq">
618                    <para>Where can I get the latest version of this
619                    document?</para>
620                </question>
621                <answer>
622                    <para>The latest release of this document is available on
623                    the <ulink url="">jEdit
624                    web site</ulink>.</para>
625                </answer>
626            </qandaentry>
627        </qandadiv>
628    </qandaset>