P F E = Programmer's File Editor   ( 32-bit )

Note: Although other good free editors probably exist now,
I've left this review here to possibly use as a comparison test,
or in case someone might still be interested in finding an editor
for older (Win9x?) 32-bit machines; probably with little memory.

Don't let the title fool you! This editor is not just for programmers.

It has all the standard functions that any good text editor should have and a whole lot more! This excellent program is free for any use!

Screenshot of PFE 32 and Notes on how to use the tool bar buttons :
PFE32 Display

Note: The Wrap function in this program has a much different effect than most editors. It does not allow you to read lines that have lengths beyond the right edge of the window like the "Word Wrap" function in NOTEPAD. Nor does it set a right margin for text that is pasted from the clipboard like a word processor. It only starts a new line of text when you begin to enter a character after column 72 while typing words on a blank line. ( If you insert text into a line that is already longer than 72 columns it will not wrap.)
To perform a wordwrap similar to Notepad: Unfortunately, there's no simple menu item (or 'toggle switch'). You can, however, select all of the file's contents using ' Edit ' --> ' Select All ', right-click and choose 'Reformat' from the pop-up menu. To undo the wordwrapped text you must use ' Edit ' --> ' Undo Text Reformat ' (or press the key combination, CTRL+Z ).

The program's help file is in British English, but the differences are only in the spelling. For example, the words center and color are spelled: centre and colour.
There is one word you may have trouble with, due to the author's preference for "editing terminology" rather than his language! He always uses the term caret, a proofreading symbol (^) indicating where something is to be inserted in a line of written or printed text, rather than the more accurate computer term cursor. So, think flashing bar (|) [for Insert] or flashing box [for Overwrite] when you see the word caret in the help file.

In the example above, the output would show every file and folder in your root directory ( including hidden system files) listed in ascending order according to each entry's date.


This is the dialog box for initiating the capture of a DOS command's screen output. I consider this to be a significant feature of PFE. It quickly gives you a ready-to-edit text (after you change to Write mode). It will also capture the output from programs that you're unable to use a pipe ( >) with in Win 95 (such as perldoc.bat ; which transfers control to another program that expects command-line parameters to be passed ).



Clicking on the Options menu above the toolbar and selecting "Preferences..." will bring up this window. Under the category selection of "Screen Font," you can choose any installed "fixed pitch font" (i.e., fixed width: each character is spaced evenly). The "System fixed pitch font" (also called "Fixedsys") is the standard Windows font used by NOTEPAD.


DOS Graphics Font

Although it's not a perfect match with the actual font displayed in full-screen DOS, the "OEM fixed pitch font" will allow you to read DOS text files including all the graphics characters and other symbols as shown in this picture. ( For some reason, Windows shortens the height of each character compared to the standard 25-line full-size DOS screen!)

PFE 32 (version 1.01)
Copyright(C)1999 by Alan Phillips

For Downloading   pfe101i.zip    [ 607 kb ]
See these sites:

You may still find copies of Alan's PFE32
as "pfe101i.zip" on servers world-wide by using a file hunting program...
Perhaps even     Google's Search Engine may help.
Hey, it does! (Simply enter "pfe101i" into the box, and you'll see many
sites around the world you can download it from.)

The old PFE Home page no longer exists (it was at: http://www.lancs.ac.uk/people/cpaap/pfe), but it appears Alan is no longer there. It used to state: "Development and distribution of Programmer's File Editor has come to an end The PFE Web Site is now closed."


Microsoft is a registered trademark, and the Microsoft Windows logos and screens are trademarks of Microsoft. The phrases "Windows 95," "Windows 98," "Windows NT," etc. may also be trademarks of Microsoft. All other logos or trademarks are owned or are property of their respective owner or owners.

Although I do try to help those in need when time permits, I am not responsible for any damage which may be caused by any software or information that you view or download from this web site, nor for any information obtained from or regarding the personal descriptions or opinions of others on pages that may be accessible from this page.

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