Zettlr Markdown Editor 1.7.1 Is Released With Vim And Emacs Input Modes

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The latest version of the Zettlr Markdown editor has a completely new file core, new code block languages, a interactive tutorial for noobs, shiny new icons and, more importantly, an emacs input mode. There is also a new Vim input mode in this release. Zettlr is available for GNU/Linux, macOS and Windows.

written by 林慧 (Wai Lin) 2020-07-06 - last edited 2020-07-06. © CC BY

Zettlr 1.7.1.

Markdown is a rather popular text formatting system popularized by Microsoft GitHub. It is fairly easy to learn and use in any text-editor. Zettlr is a special-purpose text editor written specifically for writing markdown formatted documents. Markdown documents written in Zettlr can be exported to other formats such as RTF, HTML and OpenDocument Text as long as pandoc is present on the system.

A Helpful New Welcome Screen

Zettlr gives you a nice welcome screen the first time you open it.

Zettlr 1.7+ opens a welcome document the first time you start it. This document explains how to use Zettlr and the basic syntax for writing markdown-formatted documents. There's also pre-configured tabs with tutorials that can teach you how to use citing and saving documents in various other file formats.

Under the hood

Zettlr 1.7 has a completely new rewritten file system abstraction layer. This is a big change even though it is not at all visible or noticeable when you use it. The release announcement notes that the old abstraction layer was "completely based off a StackOverflow-answer" and not scalable.

Vim and Emacs modes

Zettlr 1.7 has finally gotten Vim, and more importantly, emacs edit modes. These can be enabled in the Preferences ▸ Editor configuration box.


Zettlr is not yet available in the repositories of major distributions. You will have to download it from zettlr.com/download and install either a .deb or .rpm file depending on what distribution you are using. There's also 32 and 64 bit AppImage files as well as a macOS and a Windows version available.

GNU/Linux users will want to install the pandoc package (which is available in the repositories of all the major distributions) as it is required to save files in most of the supported file formats (HTML, txt, OpenDocument format, Word, RTF, etc).

You will likely want to visit Preferences ▸ Spellchecking before you start using it as spellchecking dictionaries are not enabled by default.

You can learn more about the Zettlr markup editor at zettlr.com. The 1.7 release announcement can be read in full at zettlr.com/post/zettlr-170-released.

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