Are you looking for a web editor to create
or design a website? This page lists free HTML editors, Web editors,
WYSIWYG (ie, “What You See Is What You Get”)
editors, web site builders, as well as specialized editors optimized for Cascading Style Sheets (CSS)
The editors are separated into two sections: the WYSIWYG Web Editors / Site Builders
allow you to design your website using a What You See Is What You Get interface — somewhat like a wordprocessor
where you can see what your page will look like (mostly) as you type; and
Builders that allow you to design your site from pre-packaged templates. If you don’t know
PHP or Perl are, this may be what you’re looking for, since the software will give you a visual interface that
you can use to develop your site.
The other section lists the Free HTML Editors
which are basically ASCII text editors with additional features that make it easier for you
to code pages for the web. Very often, this includes syntax highlighting for the HTML/CSS elements
or if you plan to learn
HTML, these are the editors you will want to check. You may also want to look at the
Free Programming Editors and ASCII Text Editors page, which lists more
editors that can be used to edit / create HTML web pages. My decision of whether to put an editor on that page or
this page is sometimes arbitrary, so it’s best to look at both pages to see if you can find what you want there.
In my opinion, though, the best web editor around is actually a commercial web editor called
None of the free editors (or even the other commercial offerings that I’ve tried) even comes close to this.
It has a superb visual (WYSIWYG) interface that can suit both newcomers as well as seasoned professionals. If you
are using this editor, you may want to check out
my Dreamweaver tutorials.
Finally, if you’re completely new to creating websites, I strongly recommend that you read
How to Create / Start a Website:
The Beginner’s A-Z Guide. There’s a lot more to making a site than using a web editor, and this article
shows you how to do it in plain English.
BlueGriffon is a WYSIWYG web editor created by the author of the Nvu web editor software (as well as the bulk of
its derivative, KompoZer 0.7.10). Since it uses the modern Firefox web rendering engine, it should be able to handle
and CSS code correctly unlike the older Nvu and KompoZer 0.7.10 software, allowing
you to use such code and see the results displayed accurately in the editor. Besides support for HTML 4, HTML 5, XHTML 1,
CSS 3, it also supports SVG, and MathML. The editor has a plug-in architecture so you may also be able to find
add-ins that extend the functionality of the program. Languages supported include English, German, French, Czech,
Dutch, Finnish, Hebrew, Italian, Japanese, Korean, both Simplified and Traditional Chinese, Spanish, Slovenian, Polish
and Swedish (and possibly others by the time you read this). The program runs on Windows, Mac OS X, and Linux. It
is open source.
- NetObjects Fusion Essentials
This WYSIWYG web editor and site builder (click the “Downloads” page on their site to get it) features drag and drop website layouts,
site management tools, a built-in FTP facility to
publish (upload) your web pages, a photo gallery,
a form builder, rollover images, support for Flash and Quicktime,
an e-commerce tool, etc. This program is a subset of their full commercial software,
A free online tutorial for the commercial version,
NetObjects Fusion 11 Tutorial
can be found on thesitewizard.com.
- KompoZer – Easy Web Authoring
KompoZer is a WYSIWYG web editor that allows you to build websites in an easy way, using a visual interface.
KompoZer 0.7.10 (the currently released version at the time I write this) is essentially an updated version of Nvu
with bug fixes. You can learn how to create a website using KompoZer with thesitewizard.com’s tutorial
How to Design and
Publish Your Website with KompoZer.
- SeaMonkey Composer (Mozilla Composer)
Seamonkey, the web browser suite from Mozilla, comes with a WYSIWYG web editor that allows you to quickly code
web pages using a wordprocessor-like interface. For more information, please read the
review of the Mozilla Composer on
thesitewizard.com. You can also find
a comprehensive tutorial on
to Design and Publish Your Website with Mozilla Composer there.
- Amaya Web Browsing and Authoring
Amaya is an open source browser and WYSIWYG web authoring environment that purports to allow
its users to develop web pages without knowing anything about HTML or CSS. You can create your
pages and view them using this software. It supports CSS, HTML, XHTML, MathML 2.0 (which allows you to browse and write web pages containing
mathematical symbols), etc. There are versions for Windows, Mac OS X, and Linux. A more
detailed review of this editor can be found in the article:
Review of Amaya: W3C’s Free WYSIWYG Web Authoring Environment.
- Trellian WebPAGE
Trellian WebPAGE is a free WYSIWYG web editor with a drag and drop interface, a preview
screen that allows you to see your page under three common screen widths (640, 800 and
1024), built-in FTP uploader, table creation wizard, form creation tool, etc. It also
has a syntax highlighting HTML editor for people who may want to switch to the HTML mode
for some fine tuning.
- Nvu – Complete Web Authoring System
[Update: Nvu has been discontinued. The author of the software has moved on to develop
is also a free web editor. Beware of scam sites pretending to be the Nvu website and asking
for donations for continued development. As mentioned, the real author is no longer working on Nvu but on
Nvu is a WYSIWYG editor that is designed to make the creation of web sites as easy for novices as it is
using commercial web editors like
It is based on the Mozilla Composer web editor (see elsewhere on this page) and includes new features that will eventually
make its way back into Mozilla Composer. This open source editor is available for Linux and Windows. You can find a tutorial on
How to Design and Publish Your Website with Nvu on
thesitewizard.com. There is also a longer review of Nvu available.
- Notetab Light
This is the freeware sibling of the commercial Standard and Pro versions. It is a general
text editor that has lots of features, including a useful “Clipbook” facility that has
numerous HTML editing conveniences. Its commercial cousin Notepad Pro comes with
syntax highlighting. (Note: to get the free version, go to the “Download” page and look for “Notetab Light”.)
- CodeLobster PHP Edition
that supports keywords, DOM elements and properties; PHP autocomplete that support standard PHP and user’s classes, variables, functions, constants,
keywords, etc; a PHP debugger; SQL autocomplete; context sensitive help; class view; browser preview; project manager; and so on. This is
a Windows program.
- HAPedit (HTML ASP PHP Editor)
HAPedit is useful for people who develop both dynamic and static web pages. It provides
code completion, an SQL console, FTP manager, PHP code “compilation”, integrated PHP help,
brace matching, search and replace with regular expressions, statistics on your page
(ie, rendered size, images, links, etc), and so on. This is a Windows program.
This editor comes with built-in FTP facility, making it possible for you to author your
web page and publish it without leaving the editor. It has a spell-checker, an
internal browser view mode that is able to show your HTML changes as you type,
a global search and replace facility across all open documents, built-in tutorial on HTML,
on Windows systems, the newer one is written in Java and is apparently cross-platform.
built-in facilities allowing you to edit binary files. There is project support, the ability to directly edit
files via FTP on your server, a macro recorder, search and replace in files, text comparison (differences between
two files with the differences highlighted in colour), syntax highlighting, spell checking, internal HTML preview
using IE and Mozilla, integrated HTML TIDY (for
validating HTML code and fixing them),
code explorer for Pascal, HTML, PHP, XML (etc), matched bracket highlighting, etc.
multiple document handling using tabs, auto-completion of keywords (customizable), regular expressions in the search and replace
function, macro recording and playback, brace and indent highlighting, collapsing and expanding of sections of code (to zoom in and out of
pieces of code such as to provide an outline overview of your text/code), etc.
- Quanta Plus Web Development Tool
Quanta Plus is a Linux HTML editor for KDE. It contains an assortment of features such as
syntax highlighting, easy configuration of toolbars, site uploading facility, the ability
to update a site from CVS (with a plugin), document structure tree, etc.
From the announcement by one of their development team: “Bluefish is a
programmer’s HTML editor, designed to save the experienced webmaster
some keystrokes. It features a multiple file editor, multiple toolbars,
custom menus, image and thumbnail dialogs, open from the web, CSS dialogs, PHP, SSI and
RXML support, HTML validation and lots of wizards.” I’ve seen a lot of good things said
about this editor by other webmasters. Bluefish runs on Linux, FreeBSD, Solaris,
Tru64/Alpha, NetBSD, OpenBSD, HP-UX and Mac OSX.
This HTML text editor is intended for use by web developers, and comes with support for
writing HTML, XML and scripts. Among its features are internal preview of your web pages (requires
IE 4.x and above to be installed), integration with HTML Tidy (a HTML and CSS validation program),
auto-completion of keywords, etc. HTML-Kit can be extended using plugins, and
runs on Windows 95, 98, NT and 2000.
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