How to Replace Notepad in Windows Vista

I’m much fond of the Flo’s excellent Notepad2 editor. Replacing the simple built-in Notepad is one of the first things that I customize on my developer box.

After the Vista Service Pack 1 is applied, my Notepad2 replacement is rolled back. I have to do it again, and I leave this simple walkthrough for anyone in the same situation:

  • Rename the downloaded Notepad2 from Notepad2.exe into Notepad.exe
  • Locate Notepad.exe files in C:Windows and C:WindowsSystem32 folders
  • Edit the permissions for those files:
    • Properties / Security / Advanced / Owner tab: change to Administrators group
    • Properties / Security tab: give Administrators group Full Control on the file
  • Copy and paste the renamed Notepad2 file in those folders, confirming the UAC message box
  • That’s it! No more ugly Notepad….


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