13 Jan 2013 @ 2:46 PM 

I had a problem with viewing/editing a 370 Mb SQL file in Windows (7) on a machine with 4GB of RAM.

I searched some solutions:

Common candidates:

  • Notepad++, Notepad, Wordpad
  • SublimeText – my personal favorite (it surpassed Notepad++ in 2011 when I first read about it)
  • TextPad, UltraEdit, EditPlus (v3)
  • TheGun (“For 6k in file size, it is fully drag and drop enabled, it supports wordwrap and it has a separate accessory to change some of the startup settings. TheGun does not use any additional runtime DLLs and is coded in Microsoft Assembler (MASM) using the Windows API functions. TheGun does not have an effective file size limit and the maximum size that can be loaded into it is determined by available memory and loading speed of the file.”)
  •  Programmer’s File Editor
  • gVim (a port of vim for Windows), Cream (a wrapper/configuration editor over gVim)
  • some usual programming IDEs: PHPStorm – my personal favorite (it surpassed NetBeans in 2012), Netbeans, Eclipse – they all failed miserably 🙂
  • Large Text File Viewer 5.2 (its last What’s new record was on 6/5/2009)
  • SlickEdit, 010 Editor, PilotEdit;
  • VEdit

Results:

  • Notepad++ (6MB kit/portable, open-source) – memory: 6MB at start, 785MB when editing, open in ~5 seconds, save in ~4 seconds, search in 6-11 seconds, instant edit/undo/redovery fluid when navigating inside the file (after an initial pause ~38 seconds); But, sometimes it won’t open it (Error: the file is too big)
  • SublimeText2 (6MB kit/portable, evaluation version – 30 days) – works, but VERY sluggish on all operations: open, find, save, undo; memory: 18MB at start, 2GB when editing,
  • Programmer’s File Editor (650K portable, open-source) – memory: 7MB at start, 420MB when editing, open/save in ~10 seconds, search in 2-3 seconds, instant edit/undo/redovery fluid when navigating inside the file; But: it said it cropped too long lines, which is kind of unacceptable (maybe there are settings to avoid it, but I tried the solution just as-it-was)
  • Large Text File Viewer 5.2 (500K portable, open-source) – memory: 1.5MB at start, 5MB when viewing, open in ~10 seconds, search > 150 seconds, NO edit/undo/redovery fluid when navigating inside the fileOnly viewer, no editor;  NO syntax highlighting;
  • TheGun (6K portable, open-source) – memory: 1.5MB at start, 792MB when viewing, open in ~20 seconds, save in ~10 seconds, search in 2-3 seconds, instant edit/undo/redo, very fluid when navigating inside the fileNO syntax highlighting;
  • Cream [gVim] (8MB kit, open-source) – memory: 4.5MB at start, 420MB when viewing, open in ~4 seconds, save in ~10 seconds, search in 2-3 seconds, instant edit/undo/redosluggish when moving inside the fileNO syntax highlighting;
  • TextPad (4MB kit, evaluation version – 30 days) – memory: 4MB at start, 22-26MB when editing, open in ~22 seconds, save in ~4 seconds, search in 1 second, instant edit/undo/redovery fluid when navigating inside the file; But it has a start warning about converting unknown characters to the system default code page 1252 (though it keeps its UTF-8 character set and saves it the same); NO syntax highlighting;
  • UltraEdit (33MB kit, trial version – 30 days) – memory: 19MB at start, 22-29MB when editing, open/save in ~10 seconds, search in ~5 seconds, instant edit/undo/redo, sluggish when moving inside the fileNO syntax highlighting;
  • EditPlus 3 (2MB kit, evaluation version – 30 days) –  won’t open it: “Out of memory”, Warning at opening: File is too large (recommends max file size: 323MB)
  • SlickEdit ( 78MB kit, trial version – 30 days) – memory: 54MB at start, 795MB when editing, open instantlysave in ~3 seconds, search in 1 second, instant edit, NO undo/redovery fluid when navigating inside the file (after a short initial pause ~3 seconds) ; NO syntax highlighting; When editing a file larger than 100MB, SlickEdit will turn off Undo/Redo capabilities for all files to improve performance.;
  • 010 Editor ( 13MB kit,evaluation version – 30 days) – memory: 9MB at start, 12-25MB when editing, open in ~4 seconds, save in ~4 seconds, search in 5 seconds, instant edit/undo/redovery fluid when navigating inside the fileNO syntax highlighting;
  • PilotEdit (10MB kit, trial version – 30 days) – memory: 12MB at start, 17-22MB when editing, open in ~32 secondssave in ~1 second, search in 5 seconds, instant edit/undo/redovery fluid when navigating inside the fileSyntax highlighting;
  • vEdit (2MB kit, trial version – 30 days) – memory: 3MB at start, 3MB when editingopen instantlysave in ~2 secondsearch in 2-3 seconds, instant edit/undo/redoconstantly (~2 seconds) waiting for disk operations when navigating inside the fileNO syntax highlighting; weird (old-ish) interface;

Testing conditions:

  • The search was made for some words at the end of the file, with the cursor positioned at the beginning
  • Syntax highlighting was needed for SQL
  • Navigation was tested using the mouse on the scrollbar, not the keyboard]
  • The test file was an SQL export (370MB)
  • I haven’t tried the suggestions on StackExchange – disable temporary file, syntax parsing and undo/redo functionality, though some of the programs offered to do some of these changes automatically for this kind of big files and eventually only for the current session – a thumb up for UltraEdit!

So, my winners are:

  • Free/Open-source: Notepad++, TheGun, Programmer’s File Editor, Cream [gVim], Large Text File Viewer
  • Trial/Evaluation: TextPad, PilotEdit, 010 Editor, vEdit, UltraEdit, SlickEdit
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Posted By: Teodor Muraru
Last Edit: 31 May 2020 @ 09:51 PM

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