Writing Mail

Page updated 1 December 2022

Go to TopExternal Editor

Using an external editor can be particularly useful for:

To use the external editor in place of the Mail Edit window, hold a SHIFT key while clicking on the menu option, or toolbar button used, to open the Property dialogue.  Similarly, if using a keyboard shortcut, add SHIFT to the keystroke.

The default external editor for nPOPuk is Notepad. Its only significant benefit over the Mail Edit window is that it offers printing facilities.  The external editor used is controlled by settings in the nPOPuk.ini file and may be changed. The external editor may also be made the default mail editor, replacing completely the Mail Edit window, by editing the nPOPuk.ini file.
NOTE: Editors that use a multi-document interface may not be suitable for use with nPOPuk. Suggestions for suitable external editors are found below.

Holding SHIFT when opening a message in the Outbox will also open the external editor rather than the Mail Edit window. (Sent messages cannot be edited. Any changes attempted when using the editor are discarded.)

As the editor window opens, a file is created in the nPOPuk data directory with a randomly numbered file name that will hold the text of the message. When created, it will already contain any signature text and, in the case of a reply or forward, the quoted text of the original message. Complete the message as required and save the file. This will update the file containing the message. Finally, quit the editor. This will save the message to the Outbox (the SendBox.dat file) and delete the temporary editor file. It will be saved unmarked, so you will need to Mark to Send the message before updating the server.

Go to TopExample Editors

The range of available text editors is vast. But, as you may have found, many are aimed at programmers, and whilst having vastly more facilities than Notepad lack the facilities for editing badly formatted quotes in e-mail replies. Others were created in the days when Notepad was even more crude than it is in the latest versions of Windows, and still lack the features needed in an e-mail editor.

Additionally, the editor needs to be able to create the required files at the right moment, so it can be populated with the appropriate text, and the editor has to be quit on finishing the message. For this reason editors using a multi-document interface may not be suitable.

To be recommended here, an editor must be:

Two programs that meets these requirements are:

  1. TED Notepad: ( - Approx 130kb depending on version)

    A hugely powerful, and extendible, programmer's editor that will be an acquired taste for those used to using the mouse. However, with just a few keystrokes to learn, re-flowing poorly formatted replies is easy with TED. Just be prepared for life without a toolbar!

  2. Metapad: ( - Approx 111kb depending on version)

    It's a little more "friendly" than TED Notepad with all the tools you need for quoting, unquoting and re-flowing text.

If you have suggestions for other editors to be included in this list, please post your suggestion on the Forum!

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