Scintilla A free source code editing component for Win32, GTK+, and OS X Release version 4.0.0
Site last modified August 16 2017

Scintilla is a free source code editing component. It comes with complete source code and a license that permits use in any free project or commercial product.

As well as features found in standard text editing components, Scintilla includes features especially useful when editing and debugging source code. These include support for syntax styling, error indicators, code completion and call tips. The selection margin can contain markers like those used in debuggers to indicate breakpoints and the current line. Styling choices are more open than with many editors, allowing the use of proportional fonts, bold and italics, multiple foreground and background colours and multiple fonts.

Current development occurs on the default branch as 4.0.x which is unstable - interfaces may change before being declared stable in a future 4.1.0. 4.* requires a recent C++ compiler that supports C++14 and some of C++17.

For projects that need to work with older systems, a LongTerm3 branch is available which uses only features from C++11.

SciTE is a SCIntilla based Text Editor. Originally built to demonstrate Scintilla, it has grown to be a generally useful editor with facilities for building and running programs. It is best used for jobs with simple configurations - I use it for building test and demonstration programs as well as SciTE and Scintilla, themselves.

Development of Scintilla started as an effort to improve the text editor in PythonWin. After being frustrated by problems in the Richedit control used by PythonWin, it looked like the best way forward was to write a new edit control. The biggest problem with Richedit and other similar controls is that they treat styling changes as important persistent changes to the document so they are saved into the undo stack and set the document's dirty flag. For source code, styling should not be persisted as it can be mechanically recreated.

Scintilla and SciTE are currently available for Intel Win32, OS X, and Linux compatible operating systems with GTK+. They have been run on Windows XP, Windows 7, OS X 10.7+, and on Ubuntu 14.04 with GTK+ 2.24. Here is a screenshot of SciTE.

You can download Scintilla.

The source code can be downloaded via Mercurial at the Source Forge Scintilla project page.

Related sites.

Bugs and To Do list.

History and contribution credits.

Icons that can be used with Scintilla.

The LongTerm3 branch of Scintilla avoids using features from C++14 or later in order to support older systems.

Questions and comments about Scintilla should be directed to the scintilla-interest mailing list, which is for discussion of Scintilla and related projects, their bugs and future features. This is a low traffic list, averaging less than 20 messages per week. To avoid spam, only list members can write to the list. New versions of Scintilla are announced on scintilla-interest and may also be received by SourceForge members by clicking on the Monitor column icon for "scintilla" on the downloads page. Messages sent to my personal email address that could have been sent to the list may receive no response.

There is a Scintilla project page hosted on