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Benno Schulenberg cbf6fd021a tweaks: remove an usused element from 'funcstruct', saving 8 more bytes 1 day ago
doc docs: explain the purpose of -! / --magic / 'set magic' 4 days ago
m4 tweaks: delete another pointless ChangeLog 6 months ago
po build: abort the update script if a PO file contains a control character 2 weeks ago
src tweaks: remove an usused element from 'funcstruct', saving 8 more bytes 1 day ago
syntax syntax: sh: recognize some shell scripts by their Emacs modeline 1 day ago
.gitignore tweaks: drop obsolete 'nano.spec' from .gitignore file, and reshuffle 3 months ago
AUTHORS docs: note Marco as the original author of the bookmarking code 5 months ago
COPYING convert to GPLv3 or later 13 years ago
COPYING.DOC convert documentation to GPLv3/GFDLv1.2 13 years ago
ChangeLog bump version numbers and add a news item for the 5.2 release 1 month ago
ChangeLog.1999-2006 tweaks: for each version, mention the changes to the PO files last 6 months ago
ChangeLog.2007-2015 tweaks: fix twenty typos, in old Changelogs and in some comments 6 months ago
IMPROVEMENTS bump version numbers and add a news item for the 5.1 release 1 month ago build: stop distributing the README.GIT file 1 month ago
NEWS tweaks: harmonize the spelling of a compound word, and rewrap a section 5 days ago
README docs: adjust the compilation instructions to two-digit version numbers 11 months ago
README.GIT docs: mention that gcc must be at least version 5.0 1 year ago
THANKS tweaks: sort three translator names better 1 year ago
TODO docs: reduce the TODO file to a reference to the bug tracker on Savannah 6 months ago gnulib: back away from a commit that causes trouble when using clang 1 month ago tweaks: make two of the changes that 'autoupdate' suggests 1 week ago
nano-regress 2014-05-29 Chris Allegretta <> 6 years ago bump version numbers and add a news item for the 5.2 release 1 month ago


GNU nano -- a simple editor, inspired by Pico


The nano project was started because of a few "problems" with the
wonderfully easy-to-use and friendly Pico text editor.

First and foremost was its license: the Pine suite does not use
the GPL, and (before using the Apache License) it had unclear
restrictions on redistribution. Because of this, Pine and Pico
were not included in many GNU/Linux distributions. Furthermore,
some features (like go-to-line-number or search-and-replace) were
unavailable for a long time or require a command-line flag. Yuck.

Nano aimed to solve these problems by: 1) being truly free software
by using the GPL, 2) emulating the functionality of Pico as closely
as is reasonable, and 3) including extra functionality by default.

Nowadays, nano wants to be a generally useful editor with sensible
defaults (linewise scrolling, no automatic line breaking).

The nano editor is an official GNU package. For more information on
GNU and the Free Software Foundation, please see

How to compile and install nano

Download the latest nano source tarball, then:

tar -xvf nano-x.y.tar.gz
cd nano-x.y
make install

It's that simple. Use --prefix with configure to override the
default installation directory of /usr/local.

If you haven't configured with the --disable-nanorc option, after
installation you may want to copy the doc/sample.nanorc file to
your home directory, rename it to ".nanorc", and then edit it
according to your taste.

Web Page

Mailing Lists

There are three nano-related mailing-lists.

+ is a very low traffic list used to announce
new nano versions or other important info about the project.
+ is for those seeking to get help without
wanting to hear about the technical details of its development.
+ is the list used by the people that make nano
and a general development discussion list, with moderate traffic.

To subscribe, send email to <name> with a subject
of "subscribe", where <name> is the list you want to subscribe to.

Bug Reports

To report a bug, please file a description of the problem on nano's
bug tracker ( -- hover on
"Bugs", then click "Submit new"). The issue may have already been
reported, so please look first.

Current Status

Since version 2.5.0, GNU nano has abandoned the distinction between
a stable and a development branch: it is now on a "rolling" release
-- fixing bugs and adding new features go hand in hand.

Copyright Years

When in any file of this package a copyright notice mentions a
year range (such as 1999-2011), it is a shorthand for a list of
all the years in that interval.