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Microsoft is removing WordPad from Windows

When it comes to opening text documents on Windows devices, users have the choice between the plain text editor Notepad and WordPad, a text editor that supports rich text format features.

Many Windows users open plain text files, those with the .txt extension, in Notepad, and formats such as .doc or rtf in WordPad.

The installation of Office applications such as Microsoft Office or LibreOffice changes this, as these tend to replace WordPad once installed. Both offer more features and better support for advanced document formats.

WordPad is deprecated and will be removed from Windows


Soon, Windows users will only have one default text editor installed on their devices: Notepad. Microsoft announced the deprecation of WordPad yesterday on the “deprecated features” listing on its Learn website.

There, Microsoft writes the following: “WordPad is no longer being updated and will be removed in a future release of Windows. We recommend Microsoft Word for rich text documents like .doc and .rtf and Windows Notepad for plain text documents like .txt.”

WordPad replaced Microsoft Write in Windows 95 as the default rich text format editor, and it has been included in all major Windows releases since.

Windows users who don’t install another application on their devices that support rich text format documents, may not be able to open these documents anymore by default.

WordPad has not received the same love from Microsoft engineers as Notepad has. Notepad updates introduced support for tabsauto-saving and more, while WordPad’s last feature change dates back to Windows 7 and the introduction of the ribbon interface.

Microsoft has yet to reveal a deprecation date for WordPress. While the text editor won’t receive any more updates, it is still possible that Microsoft is going to keep it available for the foreseeable future.

There is also a slight chance that Microsoft may have a change of heart. The company announced the deprecation of the classic Paint editor about five years ago, but decided against removing it entirely from Windows and instead turning it into a Microsoft Store application. There is a possibility that WordPad may also be moved to the Microsoft Store, so that users may still install it, if they so desire.

Most Windows users may be better off installing LibreOffice, or, if they prefer, Microsoft Office, on their devices.

Still, it is going to be interesting to see how Microsoft plans to handle issues that users will experience when they try to open a WordPad supported file on their devices.

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