Alphatk is a shareware editor written in Tcl for C, C++, Tcl, Perl, LateX, HTML, CSS, Python, Java, + 30 or so other languages. Runs on Windows, Unix, MacOS and MacOS X, using Tcl/Tk 8.4 or newer. Current version of Alphatk is 8.3.3 (December 2004).


Vince Darley


Older versions of Alphatk work with Tcl/Tk 8.1.1 or newer.

Alphatk is available as a standalone executable on Windows and MacOS X, or as a cross-platform starkit.

Alphatk has had the ability to browse remote Wiki's (using the http package) for quite some time. Recently, it added the ability to edit pages on those Wiki's --- this means you are no longer limited by your browser's very poor text editing frames. When you click on the 'edit' link, Alphatk opens up the Wiki markup in a temporary window, and when you save the window, it is http-posted back to the Wiki it came from! See How to edit Wiki pages in Alphatk for details. Similarly you can use Alphatk to edit TIPs, and ftp sites remotely.


Constructive comments and criticism on Alphatk are much appreciated. But please say what platform/window manager you are running on!

  • On Windows 2000 (and, I'd bet, other flavors as well), Alphatk assumes that its menu bar can extend the full width of the screen. Bear in mind that the Windows "start bar" can be docked on any of the four sides of the screen; I usually have it going up and down the right hand side, so as to maximize vertical space. Alphatk should play nicely with this, and it doesn't; the right hand end of the menu bar is under the start bar. - WHD

Hmm, that's interesting -- I don't know of any way to find out the practically-usable area of desktop space automatically (i.e. that which the OS hasn't grabbed for its own uses), but Alphatk does contain the ability to allow you to specify the menu bar size. Click on the Alphatk icon, and at the bottom of the system menu you will see 'resize', which allows you then to resize the menubar. Once the menubar is the size you want, go back to the menu and select 'fix size' and Alphatk will always remember that setting. Of course it would be nice to be able to do this automatically!

Duoas 2011-09-21:

You can get it with Ffidl or TWAPI through the SystemParametersInfo function with SPI_GETWORKAREA (value: 48 or 0x30) as argument. It returns a RECT describing the available desktop real estate.

ntinos - 2017-05-14 20:55:05

I take it this project is dead but AlphaTcl survived until recent years (last commit on 2012). Any chance of contacting the developer and asking him to update Alphatk or at least open source the code so someone could?

aks2161989 - 2020-03-01 12:30:05

I want to thank Mr. Vince Darley for creating this fantastic editor which is so full-featured and extensible. At the same time, I would request him to open source the code so its development can continue. I know he probably has other priorities at the moment but it would be a crying shame if such a well-written editor fades into history. The world deserves an alternative to Vim and Emacs!