David Artiss

ActiveState Komodo Edit


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Recently I’ve been looking for a new coding editor to meet my own specific needs. I’ve settled on one, but am always happy to look at potential replacements, if they’ll make my life easier. Anyway, my intention is to add short reviews of these editors as I look at them.

Today I’m looking at Komodo Edit from ActiveState. However, before I start, I should really state what I’m after.

I hand code everything, so I’m not after anything WYSIWYG. However, I would like functionality to preview anything in a number of different browsers (and if I can define them myself, that’s even better). The code should be syntax highlighted with line numbers and, optionally, ident guides. I should be able to word wrap too. Oh, and it has to be free.

And that’s about it. Simple. Sweet.

ActiveState Komodo Edit

Download from… http://www.activestate.com/Products/komodo_edit/

Download size… 29.7Mb
Installation size… 95.5Mb

So… Komodo Edit. It’s a sub-set of the full commercial Komodo IDE and is a rather good, if basic, editor. All the functionality I want is there but the browser support is limited – strangely to my default (Firefox) and those it’s detected – two different routes to, erm, Firefox. I think it wants me to use Firefox. I can’t find anyway to specify anything different.

It’s also very slow to start-up. You can see from the details above that, once installed, it takes a whopping 95.5Mb. In comparison my current editor, which is far more feature-rich and has numerous plugins installed, takes up 3.5Mb.

Code highlighting is good though and it has the full plethora of my display requirements (line numbers, etc).

[review]Although it has most of what I want, it’s basic-ness means that the occasional time I am looking for another function, it’s unlikely to be there. Along with its bulk and its browser limitations, it means I can’t rate it too highly[/review]

Categories: Product Review

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3 Comments

  1. ..but the browser support is limited – strangely to my default (Firefox) and those it’s detected … I can’t find anyway to specify anything different.

    There’s a “Browse…” button in the Web & Browser preferences right next to that drop list. You can use any browser you want for previews.

  2. “There’s a “Browse…” button in the Web & Browser preferences right next to that drop list. You can use any browser you want for previews.”

    That is true, but it means browsing to each browser as/when I need to. I may as well just launch the individual browsers and type in the URL.

  3. If you want to preview your pages in various browsers, you can create a saved “Run Command” in Komodo’s Toolbox for each browser.

    Click Toolbox|Add|New Command… and enter something like the following in the Command field:

    C:pathtobrowser.exe %F

    The ‘%F’ is a Komodo shortcut which inserts the full path of the current file.

    You can assign key-bindings to these saved commands, and even set specific icons for them (there are several browser icons included in the bundled famfamfam icon set). You could even add them to a custom toolbar if you want.

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