Feature Request: Show only line-final whitespace.

  • This code is just enabling the show whitespace characters that notepad++ already has. Does it only show the line-final whitespace for you?

  • @SalviaSage It shows the whitespace as the image I posted above.

  • I don’t see anything there, I can only see the whitespace by highlighting the text. I don’t see any kind of marker for them.

  • @SalviaSage No clue then because it works fine for me.

  • Hi, to highlight all whitespaces at the end of lines you can do this:
    1- Open “Mark” part of the search tools. (Search > Mark…)
    2- In “Find what :” type " $" (a whitespace then a $ sign)(without qouting)
    3- Select “Wrap around”
    4- On “Search Mode” part select “Regular expression”
    5- Now push “Mark All” button
    Notepad++ will highlight that whitespaces. You can clear all the highlighting by “Clear all marks” button.

    But if you like to exam thoes whitespaces one by one and then remove them, do this:
    1- Open “Replace” by “Search > Replace…” or by Ctrl+H shortcut.
    2- In “Find what :” type " $" (a whitespace then a $ sign)(without qouting)
    3- “Replace with:” has to be empty
    4- Select “Wrap around”
    5- On “Search Mode” part select “Regular expression”
    Now you can use “Find Next” button to find them one by one and remove them by “Replace” button.

  • @vtech7

    I think the OP’s desire was to see the whitespace continuallyMarking it is fine, but you’d have to keep refreshing that over and over. Doing something one time ever (e.g. @dail 's solution) is a whole lot different than doing something constantly to see a desired effect.

  • @SalviaSage

    FWIW, @dail 's solution works perfectly fine when I try it:


  • Yes, you are right, I also no longer have the initial whitespace being displayed with @dail’s script. However, the whitespace between characters are still shown. I am only interested in showing the final whitespaces instead.

    What else can you think of? thx.

  • I can already easily see the spaces between characters because there is space between them, so I don’t need those marked. I just can’t see the line final spaces unless highlighting them. So, maybe there is a command like 'SCWS_VISIBLEAFTERLASTCHARACTER" I mean, there is already one for ‘visibleafterindent’.


  • @SalviaSage said:

    So, maybe there is a command like 'SCWS_VISIBLEAFTERLASTCHARACTER"

    Nope. Would have suggested it it if there was. :)

  • Hello @salviasage, @scott-sumner, @dail, @vtech7 and All,

    Sorry, @salviasage, but Scintilla does not handle a function call, named SCWS_VISIBLEAFTERLASTCHARACTER :-((. Just look at that link, below :


    But don’t be sad ! It’s quite possible to build two macros, with a specific shortcut, for each of them, which will be able to highlight / un-highlight all the trailing blank characters ( Tabulation or Space characters ) of the current file !

    Note that I’m currently using the last 7.5.6 version of N++

    So :

    • Open Notepad++

    • Open your active configuration file, named shortcuts.xml

    Select the text, below, and place it in the clipboard with Ctrl + C

            <Macro name="Visible Ending Blanks" Ctrl="no" Alt="yes" Shift="no" Key="32">
                <Action type="3" message="1700" wParam="0" lParam="0" sParam="" />
                <Action type="3" message="1601" wParam="0" lParam="0" sParam="\h+$" />
                <Action type="3" message="1625" wParam="0" lParam="2" sParam="" />
                <Action type="3" message="1702" wParam="0" lParam="772" sParam="" />
                <Action type="3" message="1701" wParam="0" lParam="1615" sParam="" />
            <Macro name="Invisible Ending Blanks" Ctrl="no" Alt="yes" Shift="yes" Key="32">
                <Action type="3" message="1700" wParam="0" lParam="0" sParam="" />
                <Action type="3" message="1601" wParam="0" lParam="0" sParam="^" />
                <Action type="3" message="1625" wParam="0" lParam="2" sParam="" />
                <Action type="3" message="1702" wParam="0" lParam="772" sParam="" />
                <Action type="3" message="1701" wParam="0" lParam="1615" sParam="" />
    • Now, place your cursor at the very beginning of the </macros> line, in the shortcut.xml file

    • Then paste the clipboard contents, with Ctrl + V

    • Save the changes done, in shortcut.xml, with Ctrl + S

    • Close and Restart Notepad++ ( IMPORTANT )

    • From now on, every time you want :

      • To visualize the ending blank characters, use the Alt + Spacebar shortcut

      • To suppress the previous Find highlighting, use the Alt + Shift + Spacebar shortcut

    Of course, you may, also, choose the appropriate macro, in the Macro menu of N++

    Notes :

    • I use the \h+$ regex, in order to see the ending blank characters

    • I use the ^ regex, which does not match anything, because it’s a zero-length assertion. ( Instead, you may use, as well, the $ assertion or, even, the zero-length string .{0} ) So, the previous highlighting is simply suppressed :-))



    P.S. :

    In the definition of these two macros :

    • The sParam string, of message 1601, is the regex to search ( \h+$ or ^ )

    • The value 2, of message 1625, refers to the Regular expression search mode

    • The value 772 ( 512 + 256 + 4 ) of message 1702, means :

      • Search in Down direction

      • Option Wrap around ticked

      • Option Purge for each search ticked

    • The value 1615, of message 1701, refers to the Mark all button

  • I wonder what is the Original Poster’s need? Why would you need to find a better way to view the trailing spaces?
    If you need to trim the trailing spaces, you can do it by Find/Replace, with Find what: set to \h+$ or \s+$, and Regular expression chosen.
    If you need to trim the trailing spaces in a lot of files, you can go to the Find in Files… window.
    If you just want to view it, you may just use Edit -> Mask…, which you may be already doing, since you said you can mark it manually.

  • @guy038

    Thanks for your wonderful input.

    I copy pasted your text into the macros subsection, and it looks correct to me. But, it is not being recognized.
    What am I doing wrong?

  • Hi, @salviasage and All,

    You probably didn’t modify the right configuration file. First, you must know where your active configuration files are located :

    • Depending on your initial N++ installation ( with the installer OR from a ZIP or 7Z archive ), the active configuration files can be found :

      • In the same folder as Notepad++ .exe, as well as the zero-length file doLocalConf.xml, in case of a local installation of N++

      • And, in case of an usual installation of N++, with the installer :

        • In the folder %AppData%\Roaming\Notepad++, for a W7, W8 or W10 configuration

        • In the folder %AppData%\Notepad++, for a XP or Vista configuration

    Notes :

    • The environment variable %AppData% represents, generally, the path <Drive Letter>:\Documents and Settings\<User Name>\Application Data

    • BEWARE, the Application Data folder is, usually, an hidden folder. So, you’ll need to enable the visualization of hidden folders in Explorer, first !

    • I also advice you to BACKUP your active shortcuts.xml configuration file, before any change !

    Everything should be OK :-))



  • @guy038

    You are right. I modified the shortcut.xml in the notepad++ installation directory, turns out this is not where you are supposed to add your own macros. (I discovered this just now)

    And as for your macro, I just ran it and it is doing exactly what I want it to do, It marks only the line final spaces and tabs as a pink square.

    The only downfault here is, it has to be ran each time and doesn’t update itself realtime. Can this be made so it works in real time as you are typing?

    Also, how do you start a macro on startup of notepad++?

  • Hi, @salviasage and All,

    A) Regarding your first question, I’m sorry, but I cannot do better :-( To go further on and add a real-time behavior, it needs the use of a language script, as the Python or Lua N++ plugins… and that task is over my technical skills ! May be some people, of the Community, could help you ?!

    However, I really surprised why you do care about seeing trailing blank characters. Indeed, you may, either, use :

    • The Edit > Blank operations > Trim Trailing Space option ( You can, even, define a shortcut, using the Shortcut Mapper )

    • The Macro > Trim Trailing Space and Save ( Alt + Shift + S ) which, automatically, save your file, without these unneeded blank characters

    B) Regarding your second question, presently, if you have a look to ? > Command Line Arguments…, there is not any -Macro argument, which could run a specific macro, on N++ startup. But, I know that some people, already did a request for such a feature !

    Best Regards,


  • @SalviaSage

    …doesn’t update itself realtime. Can this be made so it works in real time as you are typing?

    As I pointed out earlier in this thread, the regular expression solutions aren’t going to do this type of dynamic updating. If you are willing to install the Pythonscript plugin (currently only on 32-bit Notepad++), the script given in this thread is fairly easy to adapt to do what you wish, and it updates dynamically.

    I did this modification to come up with this new script, which I call EolWhitespaceHighlighter.py :

    except NameError:
        EWH__dict = dict()
        EWH__dict['indic_to_use'] = 10  # pick a free indicator number
        def indicatorOptionsSet(indicator_number, indicator_style, rgb_color_tup, alpha, outline_alpha, draw_under_text, which_editor=editor):
            which_editor.indicSetStyle(indicator_number, indicator_style)       # e.g. INDICATORSTYLE.ROUNDBOX
            which_editor.indicSetFore(indicator_number, rgb_color_tup)
            which_editor.indicSetAlpha(indicator_number, alpha)                 # integer
            which_editor.indicSetOutlineAlpha(indicator_number, outline_alpha)  # integer
            which_editor.indicSetUnder(indicator_number, draw_under_text)       # boolean
        for editorX in (editor1, editor2):
            indicatorOptionsSet(EWH__dict['indic_to_use'], INDICATORSTYLE.ROUNDBOX, (255,0,0), 100, 50, True, editorX)  # white box rimmed in "pale violet red 2"
        def EWH__fileIsCloned(file_name_to_test):
            retval = False
            clone_detect_dict = {}
            file_tup_list = notepad.getFiles()
            for tup in file_tup_list:
                (filename, _, _, _) = tup
                if filename not in clone_detect_dict:
                    clone_detect_dict[filename] = 0
                    clone_detect_dict[filename] += 1
                    if filename == file_name_to_test: break
            if file_name_to_test in clone_detect_dict:
                if clone_detect_dict[file_name_to_test] >= 1: retval = True
            return retval
        def EWH__fileIsClonedAndIsActiveInBothViews(file_name_to_test):
            retval = False
            if editor1 and editor2:
                # both views are in use
                if EWH__fileIsCloned(file_name_to_test):
                    curr_doc_index_main_view = notepad.getCurrentDocIndex(0)
                    curr_doc_index_2nd_view = notepad.getCurrentDocIndex(1)
                    main_view_active_doc_bool = False
                    secondary_view_active_doc_bool = False
                    file_tup_list = notepad.getFiles()
                    for tup in file_tup_list:
                        (filename, _, index_in_view, view_number) = tup
                        if filename == file_name_to_test:
                            if view_number == 0:
                                if index_in_view == curr_doc_index_main_view:
                                    main_view_active_doc_bool = True
                            elif view_number == 1:
                                if index_in_view == curr_doc_index_2nd_view:
                                    secondary_view_active_doc_bool = True
                            if main_view_active_doc_bool and secondary_view_active_doc_bool:
                                retval = True
            return retval
        def EWH__getViewableEditorAndRangeTupleListList(work_across_both_views):
            retval = []
            # retval looks like these examples:
            #  [ ( editor, [ (0, 1000), (2020, 3000) ] ) ]
            #  [ ( editor1, [ (0, 1000), (2020, 3000) ] ), ( editor2, [ (4000, 5000), (6020, 7000) ] ) ]
            def consolidate_range_tuple_list(range_tup_list):
                sorted_range_tup_list = sorted(range_tup_list)  # sort criteria is first element of tuple in list
                saved_2element_list = list(sorted_range_tup_list[0])
                for (start, end) in sorted_range_tup_list:
                    if start <= saved_2element_list[1]:
                        saved_2element_list[1] = max(saved_2element_list[1], end)
                        yield tuple(saved_2element_list)
                        saved_2element_list[0] = start
                        saved_2element_list[1] = end
                yield tuple(saved_2element_list)
            def get_onscreen_pos_tup_list(which_editor):  # which_editor is editor1 or editor2 (or maybe even just plain editor)
                # loosely based upon the N++ source for SmartHighlighter::highlightViewWithWord()
                retval_tup_list = list()
                temp_tup_list = []
                MAXLINEHIGHLIGHT = 400
                firstLine = which_editor.getFirstVisibleLine()
                currentLine = firstLine
                nbLineOnScreen = which_editor.linesOnScreen()
                nrLines = min(nbLineOnScreen, MAXLINEHIGHLIGHT) + 1
                lastLine = firstLine + nrLines
                prevDocLineChecked = -1
                break_out = False
                while currentLine < lastLine:
                    docLine = which_editor.docLineFromVisible(currentLine)
                    if docLine != prevDocLineChecked:
                        prevDocLineChecked = docLine
                        startPos = which_editor.positionFromLine(docLine)
                        endPos = which_editor.positionFromLine(docLine + 1)
                        if endPos == -1:
                            endPos = which_editor.getTextLength() - 1
                            break_out = True
                        if endPos > startPos: temp_tup_list.append((startPos, endPos))
                        if break_out: break
                    currentLine += 1
                if len(temp_tup_list) > 0:
                    retval_tup_list = list(consolidate_range_tuple_list(temp_tup_list))
                return retval_tup_list
            both_views_open = True if editor1 and editor2 else False
            curr_file_active_in_both_views = EWH__fileIsClonedAndIsActiveInBothViews(notepad.getCurrentFilename()) if both_views_open else False
            if both_views_open:
                ed1_range_tup_list = get_onscreen_pos_tup_list(editor1)
                ed2_range_tup_list = get_onscreen_pos_tup_list(editor2)
            if curr_file_active_in_both_views:
                range_tup_list = list(consolidate_range_tuple_list(ed1_range_tup_list + ed2_range_tup_list))
                retval.append((editor, range_tup_list))
            elif both_views_open and work_across_both_views:
                retval.append((editor1, ed1_range_tup_list))
                retval.append((editor2, ed2_range_tup_list))
                range_tup_list = get_onscreen_pos_tup_list(editor)
                retval.append((editor, range_tup_list))
            return retval
        def EWH__callback_sci_UPDATEUI(args):
            for (editorX, pos_range_tuple_list) in EWH__getViewableEditorAndRangeTupleListList(True):
                # clear out any existing highlighting in areas the user can currently see
                for (start_pos, end_pos) in pos_range_tuple_list:
                    editorX.indicatorClearRange(start_pos, end_pos - start_pos)
                def eolws_hilite_regex_search_match_found_callback(m):
                    (span_start, span_end) = m.span()
                    editorX.indicatorFillRange(span_start, span_end - span_start)
                for (start_pos, end_pos) in pos_range_tuple_list:
                        0, #re.IGNORECASE,
        editor.callbackSync(EWH__callback_sci_UPDATEUI, [SCINTILLANOTIFICATION.UPDATEUI])  # install callback
        editor.setSelectionMode(editor.getSelectionMode())  # force manual UPDATEUI to happen

    The key area that makes this script different from the one in that other thread is this little segment:

    for (start_pos, end_pos) in pos_range_tuple_list:
            0, #re.IGNORECASE,

    Here you can see the regular expression \h+$ that matches trailing whitespace on a line.

  • Dear Scott Summer, I added your script to the startup.py and it is working perfectly. This is exactly the feature I want it, and now I got it. Thanks.

  • @dail

    Yo dail… According to this page: https://www.scintilla.org/ScintillaDoc.html#SCI_SETVIEWWS
    there is a visible only in indent command, which would only show these whitespace characters in the initial indentation area. and no where else.

    I am interested in doing that, I wrote the “SCWS_VISIBLEONLYININDENT” instead on your code above, but it didn’t work and syntax errored according to luascripts console.

    the error is right where I put this new syntax, so i don’t know if their documentation is wrong or what…

    and why are there two editor entries in there? Can you help me please? thx!

  • @SalviaSage

    I wrote the “SCWS_VISIBLEONLYININDENT” instead on your code above,

    This option is supported starting with Scintilla v3.6.2 and newer, however Notepad++ is using Scintilla v3.5.6…so this is due to Notepad++ using an old version of Scintilla…and nothing LuaScript can do about it.

    and why are there two editor entries in there?

    If you “move” or “clone” a document within Notepad++ you get a split view and can edit two files at once…each of these is an “editor” thus there is an editor1 and editor2 variable. The editor variable always references the currently active editor.

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