However, not everyone will receive the new Notepad right away.
For one, Microsoft is rolling out the new Notepad via the Dev
Channel of its Windows Insider program. More importantly, Microsoft
hasn't said anything about making the new Notepad available to
Windows 10â€”it seems to be a hook designed to entice you into
getting Windows 11.
So what does the new Notepad offer? The most obvious changes
will be aesthetic: the rounded corners that are characteristic of
the Windows 11 Mica design aesthetic, as well as a new dark mode
that won't blow out your retinas if viewed late at night.
But there are two more practical improvements, even if they
might seem a bit overdue. First, Microsoft is adding a new find and
replace experience that looks more in line with Windows apps like
Mail: a big drop-down box will let you hunt down specific words and
phrases in your document. Second, you'll be able to quickly fix any
mistakes you might make via a feature Microsoft calls a multi-level
undo, where you can tap CTRL-Z multiple times to
undo in reverse order any mistakes you might have made.
find-and-replace mode for Notepad in Windows 11. Image: Microsoft
Unfortunately, such basic features as autosave haven't yet made
it to Notepad, forcing you to manually save every so often. (The
current version of Notepad places a small asterisk next to the
filename to indicate that unsaved changes have been made.) Numerous
Notepad alternatives have been available for years, however,
including Notepad++ and Metapad, both of which are free
and open source.
Microsoft's tweaks to Notepad are among a number of updates Microsoft is making to its Windows 11
apps, including Paint, Photos, and even the Clock.