Notepad is one of those Windows apps that just stays ugly. But it’s also one of Microsoft’s most useful and well-known hunks of software, and as such, it deserves a lot better. That’s why Microsoft is finally pushing a redesigned version of Notepad for Windows 11—it’s got a dark mode, it’s got a new multi-level undo feature, and man, the whole thing’s a breath of fresh air.
Microsoft hasn’t really updated the Notepad app since Windows Vista, which may explain why it’s looked like crap for 15-ish years. This redesign, like the recent MS Paint facelift, brings Notepad up to speed with modern Windows 11 theming and design language. The app looks beautiful in both light and dark mode, and while some context menus still need an update, Microsoft basically hit it out of the park here.
Some outlets are reporting this as an aesthetics-only redesign, as in, there aren’t any features. But that’s a lie! Notepad now has an improved find-and-replace system, plus a multi-level undo feature that’s about twenty years too late.
It’s worth noting that we haven’t had a lot of time to play with the new Notepad. It may be buggy, and hey, maybe it’s got some typos in it! But a few thorns are to be expected—this is the preview version of an app that’s remained virtually untouched since Gossip Girl first aired, after all.
The new Notepad app is available to Dev Channel Insiders running Windows 11 preview build version 22509. To install it, simply open the Microsoft Store app, go to Library, and update Notepad.