The Global Options Dialog Box

Utilities>Options displays the options dialog. It has 2 tabs, the first is Global Options. This tab contains several options panes, each containing a set of related options. Use the list on the left splitter to switch between panes. Only panes created by jEdit are described here; Plugin Options panes are created and documented by the plugins themselves.

The General Pane

The General pane contains various settings, such as the number of recent files to remember, when to check for changed files, if the recent file list should be sorted, what current locale to use, if caret positions or markers in buffers should be saved, if previously open files or split configurations should be restored on startup, and so on.

If Open Buffers Are Changed On Disk... .  If Do Nothing is selected, then modifications from jEdit will silently clobber changes made from other processes during saves. Don't use this option unless you know what you are doing! Also, changing this option here only affects newly opened buffers, not the ones that are currently open. You can also change this setting for individual buffers from Buffer Options. the section called “The Buffer Options Dialog Box”

Check for changed buffers upon... .  This option allows you choose additional times that jEdit checks for changed files on disk. For slow or remote file systems, removing unnecessary file status checks might improve performance. Regardless of the choice here, files are still checked before save, unless Do Nothing is also selected for the previous option.

The Abbreviations Pane

The Abbreviations option pane can be used to enable or disable automatic abbreviation expansion, and to edit currently defined abbreviations.

The combo box labelled Abbrev set selects the abbreviation set to edit. The first entry, global, contains abbreviations available in all edit modes. The subsequent entries correspond to each mode's local set of abbreviations.

To change an abbreviation or its expansion, either double-click the appropriate table entry, or click a table entry and then click the Edit button. This will display a dialog box for modifying the abbreviation.

The Add button displays a dialog box where you can define a new abbreviation. The Remove button removes the currently selected abbreviation from the list.

See the section called “Positional Parameters” for information about positional parameters in abbreviations.

The Appearance Pane

The Appearance pane can be used to change the appearance of user interface controls such as buttons, labels and menus. It can also be used to change the icon set, or look and feel, enable/disable the splash screen or system tray, and other appearance tweaks. You can also set the number of items retained in history text fields, see Appendix C, History Text Fields.

The Context Menu Pane

The Context Menu option pane edits the text area's right-click context menu. See the section called “Multiple Views”.

The Docking Pane

The Docking option pane shows a list of available dockables, and allows you to specify docking locations for each of them. Another way to specify docking locations is to use the popup menus associated with each dockable window.

It is possible to configure jEdit to automatically load and/or save Docking Layouts (similar to eclipse perspectives) based on the edit mode of your current buffer through the checkboxes in this pane. See the section called “Window Docking Layouts”.

jEdit also supports alternate docking frameworks. If the appropriate plugins are installed (Currently only MyDoggy is available), you can change docking frameworks from here.

The Editing Pane

The Editing option pane contains 3 tabs where settings such as the tab size, syntax highlighting and soft tabs on a global or mode-specific basis are made.

The Mode Settings tab allows adjusting specific settings per mode. Changing these options does not change XML mode definition files on disk; it merely writes values to the user properties file which override those set in mode files. To find out how to edit mode files directly, see Part II, “Writing Edit Modes”. Some of these options can be further overridden on an individual file basis through the use of buffer-local properties.

The File name glob and First line glob text fields let you specify a glob pattern that paths and first lines of buffers will be matched against to determine the edit mode. See Appendix D, Glob Patterns for information about glob patterns.

The Extra Word Characters allows you to set the noLineSep buffer property on a mode-wide basis, allowing you to define what is considered part of a word when double-clicking on it in the text area.

The Deep Indent option instructs jEdit to indent subsequent lines so that they line up with the open bracket on the previous line.

The Edit Modes tab provides a setting to choose the default edit mode, the edit modes to display in the various 'mode' choosers, and the ability to manually add a new edit mode. Since there are now over 200 modes that jEdit recognizes, having the ability to reduce the number of choices in the 'mode' choosers to those needed by a user is a nice feature.

This tab also provides a way to easily add and delete user modes.

The Undo Settings tab allows setting the number of undo and whether to reset the undo history on save.

The Encodings Pane

This option pane offers users of jEdit many flexible options for defining how Encodings are handled in jEdit. See the section called “Character Encodings” for the basics.

The default line separator character (see the section called “Line Separators”) can be set from here.

Use autodetection when possible is an option you can switch on or off.

The List of Encoding Autodetector Names can be used to control what encoding detections are used on each file when it is loaded. The order they appear in this list determines the order of detectors that are tried. There are some detectors which are available with jEdit core:

Others can be defined in plugins as services and added to this space-separated list. See EncodingDetector for details on how to offer additional encoding autodetector.

The List of Fallback Encodings is used when a file fails to open in the default encoding, and the Encoding Autodetectors also fail. The list order here determines the order of encodings that are tried. Each is separated by a space. This is especially handy when doing directory searches through files of different encodings. We suggest using UTF-8 as either your default or one of the fallback encodings.

While jEdit allows you to edit files in a variety of different encodings, the average user switches between only 2 or 3. In other parts of jEdit, where the list of encodings is displayed in a combobox (such as the buffer options) or a menu (such as File - Reload with Encoding submenu) it may be desirable to display only a subset of available encodings, those that are in common local use. The Encodings checkbox list allows the user to select the subset of supported encodings to display in other GUI components that list all of the encodings.

The Gutter Pane

The Gutter option pane contains settings to customize the appearance of the gutter. You can customize values such as "minimal number of digits to reserve for line numbers", and "fold style". See the section called “Interface Overview”.

The Mouse Pane

The Mouse option pane contains settings for toggling drag and drop of text, as well as gutter mouse click behavior.

The only option that may not be self-explanatory is the Double-Click drag joins non-alphanumeric characters. This option means that double-click will select a region that includes the non-alphabetical characters, as defined for the current mode. The actual set of characters can be defined for an indiviual file via buffer-local properties (noWordSep) or on a mode-wide basis from the Editing option pane (Extra Word Characters).

The Plugin Manager Pane

The Plugin Manager pane contains a chooser for the desired download mirror, as well as various settings such as the directory where plugins are to be installed. In addition, you can set the time in minutes that the pluginlist can be cached from, helping to reduce the server load. See Chapter 9, Installing and Using Plugins.

If the option Disable Obsolete Plugins is checked, then plugins that were released on Plugin Manager will be checked against the plugins you have installed, for those with a maximum jEdit version that is lower than the one you are running. Plugins are marked with a maximum jEdit version when they are found to be broken or somehow incompatible with a given jEdit release. Until an update is made available for such a plugin on Plugin Manager, these plugins are automatically unloaded and marked unsupported. This should improve the stability of jEdit.

If you re-enable a plugin that was disabled this way, it will remain loaded until the next time the plugin list is checked - whenever the user selects the Update or Install tab from Plugin Manager. If you un-check this option, then plugins will not be automatically disabled in this way.

The Printing Pane

As of jEdit 5.3, all printing options have been moved to the printer dialog. See the section called “Printing”.

The Proxy Servers Pane

The Proxy Servers option pane lets you specify HTTP and SOCKS proxy servers to use when jEdit makes network connections, for example when downloading plugins.

The Saving and Backup Pane

The Saving and Backup option pane contains settings for dirty and/or untitled buffers, confirmation dialog option after Close All, autosave, and backup features. See the section called “Autosave and Crash Recovery” and the section called “Backups” for information about those features.

The Shortcuts Pane

The Shortcuts option pane associates keyboard shortcuts with commands. Each command can have up to two shortcuts associated with it, and each shortcut can be a single or multiple key sequence.

jEdit 5 organizes shortcuts into Keymaps. Each keymap is a named set of keyboard shortcut mappings. Default keymaps are found in jEdit's keymaps folder, and user customized keymaps are are stored in the user settings' keymaps folder. The can user switch between keymaps with the first combobox on this pane.

The imported.props keymap is automatically created and selected when jEdit needs to initially create a keymaps user settings folder. At this point, jEdit imports the existing shortcuts and places them into imported. This makes it easy to bring in shortcuts from properties files that were customized with jEdit 4.5 or earlier.

If a keymap of the same name exists in the defaults and the user settings directory, the user version is the one that is used in favor of the default. To take an existing keymap and customize it, select it, click duplicate and you will be asked for the name of the new keymap. A copy of that keymap will be saved in the user settings keymaps directory. At this point, this keymap will be selected and will determine where new shortcut properties are stored. To remove all customizations and restore a default keymap, click reset.

The combo box below the keymap selector selects the Action Set to edit. Action Sets exist for the set of all built-in commands, the commands of each plugin, and the set of macros. Some plugins (ProjectViewer, Console and SideKick) offer additional action sets of dynamically-generated actions. Here, you can also select All to see all actions, and an additional 4th column appears in the table, indicating the Action Set each action comes from.

To change a shortcut, click the appropriate table entry and press the keys you want associated with that command in the resulting dialog box. The dialog box will warn you if the shortcut is already assigned. The properties will be saved in the currently selected keymap.

The Status Bar Pane

The Status Bar, its API, and its corresponding option pane contains settings to customize which widgets are in the status bar, their order, and what separators exist between them. Also, you can disable it completely, for regular and/or plain views. See the section called “The Status Bar”.

From the Options tab, you can customize information about the caret display in the lower left corner.

Selecting the Widgets tab of this option pane shows you what widgets on the right, and their order. You can add or remove widgets and separators/labels here.

The Syntax Highlighting Pane

The Syntax Highlighting pane can be used to customize the fonts and colors for syntax highlighting. See the section called “Syntax Highlighting”.

The Text Area Pane

The Text Area pane contains settings to customize the appearance of the text area.

You can configure the Text Font, antialias settings, colors, cursor style, highlight matching, and word-completion settings from here.

Fractional Font Metrics is an old option that helps with certain versions of Java, but usually not in combination with subpixel antialiasing.

Additional Fonts with font substitution if checked, shows a list of Preferred fonts, as well as the following option. Fonts added to this list will determine the order jEdit searches for glyphs that may be missing from your chosen Text Font.

If the Font Substitution: Search all system fonts option is checked, all of the installed fonts are searched for glyphs, after the preferred list is searched. If this option is checked, no fonts need to be added to preferred fonts list. You probably don't want to un-check either of these options unless you want to test a system with limited fonts.

The Tool Bar Pane

The Tool Bar option pane lets you edit the tool bar, or disable it completely. See the section called “Multiple Views”.

The View Pane

The View option pane lets you change various settings related to the editor main window appearance, including the arrangement of dockable windows, whether the search bar and buffer switcher are visible, and whether menu, toolbar, and statusbar are visible in full-screen mode. See the section called “Multiple Views”.

You can choose the default bufferset scope here, as well as whether/how you want buffersets to be sorted in buffer switchers. See the section called “Buffer Sets and closing buffers” for more details.

If Abbreviate paths with environment variables when possible is checked, you will notice that jEdit displays abbreviated versions of file paths when it can, using $VARIABLE/name.ext or %VARIABLE%\name.ext syntax, depending on your platform. Abbreviating is used in the File System Browser, as well as in the window title, and in plugins, to save horizontal space. Reverse-expansions also work as you would expect them to, with both syntaxes recognized on all platforms.

The File System Browser Panes

The File System Browser group contains two option panes, General and Colors. The former contains various file system browser settings. The latter configures glob patterns used for coloring the file list. See the section called “The File System Browser (FSB)” for more information.