There is a very active question about LaTeX editors and IDEs. I personally use Vim with LaTeX-suite for any LaTeX editing, and I am very happy with it. Lately I began to use ConTeXt more and more. I would like to know what people use for editing ConTeXt. Especially is there is a set of Vim macros similar to LaTeX-suite.

I know there is a page about Vim on ConTeXt garden, but as far as I can tell, it has not been updated in quite a while.

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    I use vim :-) No special addons (except for the basic syntax highlighting rules that come in the somewhat old context.vim) Aug 4, 2010 at 17:57
  • I also use vim and have a really hand-tuned syntax highlighting and indenting, use some custom macros to get auctex like shortcuts for Greek math, and use Snippets.vim for texmate like snippets. I had written a compliler plugin also, but haven't used it in a while. Some of my setup is at github.com/adityam/vim-context
    – Aditya
    Aug 4, 2010 at 20:02
  • Im looking for an editor, which knows ConTeXt, has an integrated PDf-Viewer and allows code-folding. It should be simple to configure it (not like Emacs). At the end: I am looking for a TeXWorks with code-folding, any suggestions?
    – Mustafa
    Oct 16, 2012 at 9:24

8 Answers 8


Hans Hagen (the author of ConteXt) uses SciTE and, more recently, textadept. He also wrote support files for those editors and these are part of the ConTeXt distribution. The ConTeXt distribution also comes with a full set of support files for TeXWorks. The support for the various other editors mentioned above and on the ConTeXt wiki page are written by other people.

If you want the best possible editor support, you should probably use one of the three that are actively supported by ConTeXt, but I have heard that Emacs and TextMate (at least) are also working well.

See also: http://wiki.contextgarden.net/Text_Editors


As a devoted Emacs user I prefer using AUCTeX, which supports ConTeXt. Another useful Emacs addition is etexshow, which is an Emacs port of texshow, a browser for ConTeXt commands (not all, but most of them).

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    I wish someone would take over etexshow, it is not up to date anymore. ... anyobody out there? Hello? Can you hear me? Any elisp hackers?
    – topskip
    Aug 5, 2010 at 21:02
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    I am thinking of becoming a more serious user of ConTeXt (due to LuaTeX and the programming experience it may bring). I will try shaping up ConTeXt stuff for emacs.
    – Leo Liu
    Aug 6, 2010 at 8:31
  • Great! You will definitely find appreciative users, who will be glad to support your effort (at least one!). Even outdated, I find etexshow still useful, although it's definitely better to use wiki.contextgarden.net/Category:Reference/en now.
    – helcim
    Aug 6, 2010 at 10:19
  • The etexshow part will be the easiest (See: paste.lisp.org/display/113269, just wrote it but can be a starting point). I was thinking more about an IDE for ConTeXt.
    – Leo Liu
    Aug 6, 2010 at 21:38
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    etexshow took me much more time then the rest of the context mode. It has many many hidden beauties. One of the better hacks I've produced :)
    – topskip
    Aug 8, 2010 at 10:03

See the page on the wiki: http://wiki.contextgarden.net/Text_Editors - if it is obsolete at any place, please correct it.

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    That's the thing, I don't know if it is obsolete, I just know it has not changed for a while. I want to know if there is any new info. Aug 4, 2010 at 20:18

TeXworks has ConTeXt highlighting in addition to LaTeX (and plain TeX). The Windows-only WinEdt also has some ConTeXt-specific support.


I believe the author of ConTeXt uses SciTE (scriptable through python). Unfortunately the ConTeXt support in AUCTeX is not as good as LaTeX.

  • not as good as isn't a very useful comment: who's had problems with it, what wanted features are missing? Aug 8, 2010 at 9:14
  • Certainly not useful but I have no extensively use of context mode so I won't be able to comment too much until I find time to look at the source. The point is that none of the regular committers to auctex use context and the code base may be rotten.
    – Leo Liu
    Aug 8, 2010 at 13:37
  • @CharlesStewart: I'm not a lisp hacker, but I saw no options to make AUCTeX use context instead of texexec.
    – prash
    Mar 1, 2012 at 15:45
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    @prash: You can make this work by editing the variable tex-command-list (supported by Emacs Customize) so that there is an entry for running Context directly - bit this is a good answer to my question: the current version of Auctex has support built in for texexec but not the context executable. Mar 6, 2012 at 13:14

I use Kile. I found a syntax highlighter at KDE-files.org. I modified it based on the LaTeX highlighting file to (1) allow spell-checking only in text sections and (2) show section* headings in bold. I prefer to use the extensions, .mkii and .mkiv to prevent confusing the text editor. You may want to change that. You can find it on PasteBin. Save it as ~/.kde4/share/apps/katepart/syntax/context.xml.


Someone has written a TextMate bundle: http://wiki.contextgarden.net/ConTeXt_Bundle_for_TextMate

BTW: TextMate is my favorite text editor.


For a few days now I am using textadept. It's similar to SciTE (imo faster), as customizable and lightweight and surely worth a try. I posted a question and answer here on stackexchange how to set it up for ConTeXt:

How to setup textadept with ConTeXt

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