Is there an alternative WYSIWYG editor for RapidWeaver?

I do like RapidWeaver but … the text editor - the thing by which we actually enter most of our content - seems surprisingly basic or irritating to use, for what is otherwise an incredibly sophisticated and elegant system.

tl;dr: is there another editor I can use within RapidWeaver, particularly within Stacks? The green highlight thing is driving me BATTY.

What I want to do:

  • Type in my text (current editor: ok)
  • Style it by adding the usual stuff - paragraphs, soft returns, bold, italics, links, tables, images, headings, styles that I’ve created using CSS (current editor: ok for some, but forget about CSS styled text; I assume I can probably do that if I go full Foundation or something though)
  • Be able to immediately see the styling I’ve applied without having to go to a preview (which is currently a multi-click process) (current editor: WHAT’S WITH THE DAMN GREEN HIGHLIGHT THING??)
  • tidy up styling without having to re-write the CSS (ie go into the HTML to fix little issues like an anchor ending after a full stop instead of before it, or a paragraph being where it oughtn’t, and the like)(current editor: nope, use HTML instead but have to do everything in HTML)

How doesn’t the built-in editor support this?

  • The green highlight for identifying paragraphs/headings is AWFUL. Sorry, but it is. It’s impossible to determine what’s been styled and what hasn’t, it’s impossible to remove once it’s there and, because I can’t quickly switch into an HTML editor, I can’t even tidy things on the fly.
  • I can’t tell whether it’s going to insert an enormous gap between paragraphs or not. (To be fair, this issue seems to be increasingly creeping up in a number of web systems; creators don’t seem to comprehend that sometimes, all you want is a single paragraph between … well, paragraphs).
  • I write a lot of words. I want those words separated by an ordinary paragraph spacing when I press “return”, regardless of the styling applied to those words.
  • I shouldn’t have to remember to add a para return between content of the same type, but no return between content of different types. Or something. I can’t tell the logic.

These three images demonstrate my point (I’m aware there’s an error - that’s why I was going in to edit it!)

  1. Content as it’s seen on the Stacks page.

  2. Content when I double-click to edit. This is the bit that drives me insane. What’s with the green? What’s it indicate? How can I tell whether I’ve applied my heading/paragraph styling accurately? How can I fix styling errors?

  3. Content when previewed/seen on the webpage.

It takes me three goes each time I edit text to get everything placed correctly. That’s far too long.

I did look but … is there an alternative? Don’t mind paying for it if it exists …

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@isaiah might give some insights here…

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Whenever you apply an “HTML Style” the green highlight appears.

I agree entirely.

The base RW product -even at version 8.x is largely irrelevant, in my view. The html page, for example does not have any of the html editing features you would find any even the most basic of editors downloadable for £6 from the app store.

Weird. I would love to know/see the RealMac feature roadmap from Release 5 through to today to see just how much love and attention page-types like that have actually received.

A few years ago, I was thinking about ways to extend RW a bit, but would not have been comfortable with trying unless I knew that the HTML page type/editor was going to be brought up to date. I wrote to RealMac and after not getting a reply for about a month and I chased it up they told me to take the matter up with Will Woodgate(!) - WTF?

So… as always we are back to the Stacks page type and punching a hole through the Stacks plugin to do anything useful in Rapidweaver. There are quite a few vendors offering html enclosure/wrapper stacks. This one looks nice:

How can the html page type be so pathetic yet the RMS team were instead focussing on integrating something like Unsplash? Makes no sense to me - but I’m not a businessman…


If you want to do all your work in HTML…
Even the original designers of HTML never expected us to write in HTML. That is part of why programs like RW were built.

Why is there an HTML page type then? Why not remove it?

It is made if you need to add HTML code into your project…not just for text…

If it’s purpose is to allow you to add HTML code then why does it not have standard features that you find in other HTML editors. Like code completion?

You would have to talk to someone like @isaiah
He wrote Stacks

You could always use one of those editors and then copy/paste that data into a HTML stack.

What? I’m talking about the HTML page type in Rapidweaver core product. What are you referring to?

Anywhere you wish to use HTML code.

Ok, @joemart1951 I have no clue what you mean.

you can cut and paste HTML code from a external editor to a HTML page or to any stack that supports HTML code.

Learn something new everyday. Thanks for that.

No problem…

Yeah, I get that quite often. I think because they know I’m around most days (at ridiculous times of day and night) to answer questions and I have ways of finding solutions! :wink:

What I can tell you is that there are no alternative WYSIWYG editor controls you see in “edit mode” for RapidWeaver or Stacks. These are hard-coded into the app and the plugins. There is no developer API available to us (that I am aware of), that let you change what buttons are shown to you or customise what they do.

I do agree with other comments here (and elsewhere) that the Styled Text and HTML Code page types could do with a major revamp for RapidWeaver 9. For all its problems, the new Gutenberg editor in Wordpress has proven quite influential in how people can edit content.

So far as code is concerned, it’s a great shame, because there was once a rather clever and sophisticated page type plugin available for RapidWeaver called Code Complete. This is the only reference I can find to it now:

It was previously developed by Michael Robinson @faceleg and released alongside a couple of other highly useful page types like Meta Mate. I used to love his Code Complete plugin, because I am rather old-school and predominately do a lot of content editing for websites in HTML or Markdown. So the features formally on offer in this Code Complete plugin were a big upgrade over the HTML Code page type bundled with RapidWeaver.

This thread from 2016 suggests Code Complete got taken over and is developed by someone else. But I cannot find any other mentions of it. Alas I think Code Complete was too far ahead of its time - back then a lot of people did not care for HTML code or Markdown.


It took me a long time to embrace Markdown but I think it’s definitely the best way to go for most purposes in RW.


Maybe have a look at scribe from bigwhiteduck.


I want to cheer every time I hear of another markdown convert. :smiley:
The benefits of using a standardized system of text handling are really huge. And I think the more RW folks we can move to Markdown the better.



I like Scribe very much but the Markdown stack which comes with Stacks is pretty good too.