Stefans Tools

Useful open source tools that make your life easier


BowPad is a small and fast text editor with a ribbon user interface and syntax highlighting.

BowPad with default color theme BowPad with dark color theme

A few notable features of BowPad:

And before you ask: the name BowPad comes from the fact that it uses the ribbon user interface.
Ribbon → Bow, Editor → NotePad = BowPad.
And of course we all know that Bowties are cool!


The latest version of BowPad is available for download here.
If there is a new version available, BowPad will notify you and offer to download and install it for you.

Windows 7 required

BowPad requires Windows 7 or later. It won't work on Windows XP!

If you're interested to know about what has changed in new versions of BowPad, have a look at the change history.

Source code

BowPad is licensed under the GPL. If you would like to make changes to BowPad, get the source code here.

Report bugs, ask for new features

In case you encounter a bug or you have a feature request, please create a new entry in our issue tracker. But please first do a search there on all issues (not just the new ones) to make sure your issue isn't already reported and/or fixed.


BowPad can show the UI in various languages, but if your language of choice is not available, you can help create it. Find out how here.


If you're interested in writing plugins for BowPad, have a look at the documentation. Once you have the plugin script ready, create a new issue in the issue tracker and attach the plugin there.

Replace Notepad

If you want to replace the Windows NotePad with BowPad, you can do that by modifying the registry:

  1. Start regedit.exe
  2. go to HKLM\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\Image File Execution Options and create a new key named notepad.exe
  3. under the notepad.exe key, create a new string value named Debugger and set the value to "c:\program files\BowPad\BowPad.exe" /z