The Notepad that comes with Windows is a prime example of how Microsoft doesn't understand what sort of software is
supposed to come with operating system. A useful text editor is right up there at the time, but Notepad is broken and
defective by design in so many different ways that this would turn into a rant if I listed them all.
So, instead, I shall list Notepad++. Download it, install it, use it, and stop worrying.
It has syntax hilighting, and the ability to convert back and forth from Unix, Mac, and Windows format text files, and
ANSI and UTF-8. It can encode and decode HTML entities, it can uuencode and uudecode, it can change the base of numbers,
and it can run HTML tidy inside itself using libtidy.
It has the incredibly useful feature of recording macros and playing them back. Many people have never heard of such a
feature, although more powerful editors have had it forever. It's very nice if you, for example, need to swap the fourth
and fifth word in 1000 lines of text: You simple position your cursor on one line, hit record, do the swap in such a way
it would work on any line (Aka, hitting 'home' first and using ctrl+arrow to jump whole words, and shift+ctrl+arrow to
hilight them, and keyboard shortcuts to copy and paste), then you hit down, and stop recording. Then you run the macro a
few times and watch it do things line-by-line, and when you're sure it works, you hold the macro key combination down
until you reach the end.
It has automatic session support where it will remember what files are open and reopen them, and it can minimize to the
system notification area so you can just leave it open.
I can't think of anything I need in a text editor.