buffer options do not, unless you use
the buffer-local method. This consists
of embedding colon-separated hints to
jEdit in the file. jEdit checks the first
or last ten lines for these hints. As an
example, to specify an indentation of
2, use spaces for tabs and “hard” wrap,
the embedded hints would be:
jEdit checks anywhere in those lines,
so you can place the hints behind
Also note that jEdit supports mode-specific settings, where a mode is a
file type, such as Python ( *.py), C (*.c),
HTML ( *.html) and so on. The various
modes come with default settings, but
they can be overridden. One of the key
benefits is that the mode system pulls
in file-type-specific syntax highlighting.
Other options are available for the
editor’s layout. As you can see in the
screenshots for this article, I tend to
run jEdit with two buffers open, split
vertically and with line-numbering
enabled. The ability to look at the beginning and end of file at the same time,
especially source code, is invaluable.
You can use jEdit in a great number
of ways. Watching me enter text,
although it has its moments, is not
terribly inspiring. So to keep things
interesting, here I demonstrate some
of the plugins I have found useful.
Plugins are code that scratches an
itch. The base jEdit program does a
lot, but it does not cover the universe
that is text editing, or other chores
for that matter.
jEdit has a macro system (not covered in this article), so you can whip
up your own solutions to problems or
scope out the plugins available and not
re-invent the wheel. So, before getting
into the plugins themselves, here’s an
overlook at the plugin system itself.
They can be found at plugins.jedit.org
or via the Plugins item on the menu
bar. Click on the Plugin Manager item
and then the Install tab for a list of
available plugins. Clicking on an item
shows a description at the bottom of
the page. Check the box of any plug-in(s) you want to install, and then click
Install. If the plugin has dependencies,
they also will be installed.
So, where to start with the plugins?
Let’s go from less-involved to more-
involved, beginning with one suggested
to me by a member of the Bellingham
Linux User Group: WhiteSpace. It does
what it says—tracks whitespace. I have
it set up to show trailing whitespace
and, additionally, to eliminate any
such whitespace when I save. I also
have it show tabs and modify them
according to my jEdit soft tab setting.
This setting, when enabled, converts
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