BBEdit FAQs


What is the current version of BBEdit and what system version does it require?

BBEdit 12.1.5 requires Mac OS X 10.11.6 or later, and is fully compatible with macOS 10.13 “High Sierra”. (It will not run on any OS version prior to Mac OS X 10.11.6.)

OS Compatibility Information

Are there any functional differences between the Mac App Store version and the directly distributed version of BBEdit 10?

The Mac App Store version of BBEdit 10 does not support authenticated saves (the ability to save changes to files that you do not own) and does not include the command-line tools, in order to comply with Apple’s submission guidelines.

Authenticated saves: BBEdit includes a scripting attachment point which makes this possible. A script and instructions for installing it are available on this page.

Command-line tools: Any customer who purchased BBEdit 10 from the Mac App Store may use the following package to install the command-line tools on their system. (This package is only for use with Mac App Store copies of BBEdit 10, and is not suitable for use otherwise.)

BBEdit command-line tools installer: download

Note: BBEdit 12 is not available in the Mac App Store; if you would like to upgrade from a BBEdit license purchased in the Mac App Store, you can do so here: BBEdit Upgrades for Mac App Store Customers.

Does BBEdit support “Split View” on macOS 10.11 and later?

BBEdit 12.0 and later can be used in Split View mode (though older versions are not able to do so).

Does BBEdit support Japanese/Chinese/Korean language editing?

BBEdit supports opening and editing files written in most left-to-right writing systems, including non-Roman languages such as Japanese, Chinese, and Korean.

However, BBEdit does not support editing content in right-to-left languages such as Hebrew and Arabic. (You may also encounter inconsistencies when working with languages that routinely employ conjunct characters, such as Devanagari.)

How do I change the line ending format of a large number of files?

If you have a large number of files which you need to convert from one line ending type to another, we recommend that you create a Text Factory with a single “Change Line Endings” action, and apply that text factory to any folder(s) containing the files you wish to modify.

How can I edit really big files in BBEdit?

Handling large files presents no intrinsic problems for BBEdit, though some specific operations may be limited when dealing with files over 2GB in size.

How do I select a column of text within BBEdit?

Just hold down the Option key (the mouse cursor will change to a cross shape) and then drag to make a rectangular selection.

Please note the “Soft Wrap Text” option must be turned off in order to make a rectangular selection. (You can turn off soft wrapping in the current document via the Text Options popup in the toolbar, or in the Text Options sheet.)

Why does BBEdit’s syntax checker say my HTML files contain errors?

Short Answer: Because they contain errors! :-)

Long Answer: BBEdit’s syntax checker is based on language templates generated from published DTDs and when it reports an error, the odds are good that the checker is correct.

If you don’t believe that it is correct in doing so, please check the most recent available on-line HTML references, and contact technical support.

Why do I get an alert from Little Snitch when checking for updates, with a web site that I don’t recognize?

We use Amazon’s AWS S3 cloud download service to serve updates (and many other downloads that we provide), and the IP address for “s3.amazonaws.com” (the hostname for Amazon’s S3 service) may reverse-resolve to any one of a number of domains that also use this service.

Thus, this alert from Little Snitch is not reporting anything untoward — instead, Little Snitch is being diligent but inaccurate in not telling you the actual requested host name of the DNS lookup. In order to download and install updates using the built-in Check for Updates, you will need to give permission to access Amazon S3, even if the name that Little Snitch reports is not correct.

If you would like to verify this, you may do so as follows, using the Terminal application or a BBEdit shell worksheet:

Run this command: dig StrangeServerName.

In place of “StrangeServerName”, substitute the name that LittleSnitch reported in its alert. For example, if the server name was “assets.huffingtonpost.com”, run the command: dig assets.huffingtonpost.com.

Note that in the “ANSWER SECTION”, you’ll see an entry with the server’s IP address. Note also that there are additional server names listed, including “s3.amazonaws.com” and possibly other names in the amazonaws.com domain.

If you wish to verify further: Use that IP address in the following command: dig -x a.b.c.d (substitute the actual address for “a.b.c.d”). In the “ANSWER SECTION” you will see one of the Amazon host names (in the “amazonaws.com” domain) that appeared in the previous command that provided the server’s IP address.