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What editors/IDEs are available for easing the process of writing TeX/LaTeX documents?

Please state some useful features like code completion, spell checking, building final DVI or PDF files, etc.


This question is undergoing a systematic refurbishment, see Let’s polish the Editors/IDEs question on meta. If you’d like to see another editor feature covered here or to take care of an editor that’s not covered yet, share your ideas in that meta question.

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20  
Wikipedia has a list: Comparison of TeX editors. –  Caramdir Apr 4 '11 at 2:26

40 Answers 40

RTextDoc

  • Platforms: Windows, Mac OS, Linux (written in Java)
  • License: Commercial with free demo version
  • Languages: en, 14 other
  • Syntax Highlighting: Yes
  • Code Folding: Yes
  • Spell Checking: Yes (20 languages)
  • Grammar Checking: Yes (14 languages)
  • Built-in Output Viewer: Yes
  • Section structure viewer: Yes

This editor has a few features that can make it attractive: instant grammar checker, word look-up with more than 40 dictionaries and built-in graphics program based on PStricks. It also supports AsciiDOC syntax to write documents. Other features include:

  • LaTeX → HTML converter
  • HTML → LaTeX converter
  • LaTeX → MathML/XML converter
  • WYSIWYG Equation Editor and Bibliography database editor WYSIWYG Equation Editor Bibtex manager
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Emacs with WhizzyTeX

Available for: Linux, Unix-based systems
Open Source


I just recently discovered WhizzyTeX for Emacs. It gives you a real-time preview of your document, as you type. It can also show you where your cursor is with respect to the document.

It works with everything that I've thrown at it: Math, tipa, synttree, TikZ, etc. The only problem I've encountered so far is that TikZ nodes with text get garbled together.

For Ubuntu/Debian users:

  1. sudo apt-get install advi whizzytex
  2. Start Emacs
  3. M-x whizzytex-mode
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Scientific WorkPlace

Available for: Windows
Commercial

Platforms: Microsoft Windows® NT 4.0, or Windows® 98, Me, 2000, XP, Vista, Windows® 7 or later or Apple Macintosh® running an emulator program such as Virtual PC™, Parallels, or the free Virtual Box running a version of Windows® listed above

License: commercial, US$810.00

Spell Checking: can/must be purchased separately


It has MuPAD as built-in computer algebra system, is described here and a trial version can be downloaded from here.

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Verbosus (a.k.a VerbTeX for Android/iOS/Windows 8)

  • Platforms: Android, iOS, Windows 8 (modern UI), Browser

  • License: Free (limited version), Paid (full version)

  • Languages: en (Android/iOS/Windows 8/Browser), de (Android/Browser), fr (Browser)

  • Unicode: Yes

  • Syntax highlighting: Yes

  • Code completion: Yes (Browser), No (Android/iOS/Windows 8)

  • Code folding: No

  • Spell checking: Yes (Android/iOS/Windows 8/Browser: Depending on your preferences)

  • SyncTeX: No

  • Built-in output viewer: Yes (Browser: if you use a browser like Chrome which has an integrated viewer), No (Android/iOS/Windows 8)

  • Project management: Yes

  • Collaboration: Yes (Android/Browser), No (iOS/Windows 8)

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SCaVis

  • Platforms: All Java enabled platforms (Window, Linux, Mac, Sun)

  • License: Free

  • Languages: en

  • Unicode: Yes

  • Syntax highlighting: Yes

  • Code completion: Only for macros to generate images

  • Code folding: No

  • Spell checking: Yes (Using Open-office dictionaries)

  • SyncTeX: Yes

  • Built-in output viewer: Configurable using scripts

  • Additional features to edit LaTeX files: Integrated structure view, LaTeX tool to insert latex commands, BibTex manager.

This IDE goes much beyond editing LaTeX files. It is an environment for scientific computation, data analysis and data visualization. You can plot functions, perform a data-analysis with histograms and arrays, do data mining, statistical calculations. Symbolic mathematical calculations are also supported. A lot of tools for matrix calculations. Data can be shown in 2D and 3D. SCaVis can generate vector-graphics images that can be inserted to the LaTeX documents. The program is written in Java.

SCaVis IDE to edit LateX files

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Scientific Word — [tag:s

  • Platforms: Windows
  • License: Commercial

Same as Scientific WorkPlace, but without the computer algebra system (hence the lower price).

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Scribes

  • Available for: Linux
  • Free & Open source
  • Unicode: Yes
  • RTL/BiDi: Yes
  • Custom BG/syntax highlighting: Yes (GTK)
  • Best feature: customizable templates/snippets (great for quick insertion of figure/table/listing environments, inserting non-ASCII characters for XeTeX users, etc)

screenshot of LaTeX editing with Scribes

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Atom with language-latex and latex packages

Available for: Windows, Mac, Linux

While Atom is a fairly new editor and LaTeX support (through packages) is somewhat limited, it already has a very large community providing extensions through its highly customizable package system. Atom has packages providing Git integration, BibTeX autocompletion and many other features.

Syntax highlighting is provided by the language-latex package, and as of 2014-08-08 the latex package provides code completion and compilation using latexmk. Spell checking and code folding are provided by the core packages of the editor.


  • Platforms: Windows, Mac, Unix
  • Licence: Open Source (MIT license)
  • % !TEX directives: No(?)
  • Syntax highlighting: Yes
  • Code completion: Yes
  • Code folding: Yes
  • Spell check: Yes
  • SyncTeX: No
  • Built-in output viewer: No
  • Project management: ?

enter image description here

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I tend to use jove "Jonathon's Own Version of Emacs" (see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/JOVE for history, downloads at ftp://ftp.cs.toronto.edu/cs/ftp/pub/hugh/jove-dev/) which gives a very compact emacs-like editor for Windows, without the vast overhead of an emacs environment.

I use a secondary cmd window to invoke texify (MikTeX), though I presume jove could set up a macro to do it. In the image below, my editing window is upper left, the cmd window is lower left and the DVI (or PDF) window is on the right.

enter image description here

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Archimedes

Available for: Mac OS X
Commercial - $4.99 on Mac App Store


Archimedes is a LaTeX and Markdown editor designed from the ground-up for Mac OS X. It does not require an external TeX installation and includes innovative features like Magic Type, which allows users to insert mathematical symbols simply by drawing them on their MacBook's trackpad or Magic Trackpad.

Screenshot

Features (copied from the website):

Markdown Editing

At its core, Archimedes is a fully-featured plain text and Markdown editor. It includes a fast syntax highlighter and provides convenient keyboard shortcuts for common actions, such as inserting images and links. With complete support for Markdown, Archimedes makes formatting and structuring documents elegant and easy.

Math Mode + Autocomplete

In Math Mode, Archimedes lets you write mathematics in a subset of LaTeX. Just enter $$ to get started. Over 700 intuitive commands, such as \sqrt{a^2 + b^2}, help you produce stunning mathematical output. Archimedes even autocompletes commands and intelligently matches closing braces, brackets, and parenthesis as you type.

Magic Type

Just getting started with LaTeX? Don't know the code for the asymptotically equal symbol? Use your MacBook's trackpad or Magic Trackpad to draw it! Archimedes will recognize the symbol and insert the corresponding code for you.

Live Preview

As you work, a beautifully-typeset live preview of your document is always visible. You can even switch between horizontal or vertical orientation and select a custom theme.

Math Library

Browse the math library to see all available LaTeX commands and their previews in one place.

Macros

Archimedes lets you define macros -- or custom commands -- for the expressions you work with the most. Macros show up in autocompletion results right alongside built-in completions.

Navigator

Working on a long document? Use the Navigator to pull up a table of contents and quickly jump between sections.

Sharing

Share your work with the rest of the world via email, iMessage or AirDrop. Or export a PDF or HTML document to disk.

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1  
Hello! Do you think you could try to make this answer comply with the template defined in the following link? It would be helpful for people trying to find what suits them the best. meta.tex.stackexchange.com/a/3254/11002 –  yo' Nov 24 at 22:40
1  
In addition to what @tohecz says, I wonder about the 'doesn't require a TeX system' part. Is this really a (La)TeX editor, or is it some form of Markdown-like parsing which recognises just a subset of LaTeX-like math mode commands (similar to MathJax)? The screenshot given doesn't really look like TeX input, for example. –  Joseph Wright Nov 25 at 8:27

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