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Recently I discovered that, after years of thinking various software was adding a newline to the end of my files, it was actually Pluma (or Gedit - same difference) silently adding them all along. Currently I'm working on a website that will have lots of PHP includes, parsing data saved on disk and the likes, so it would make my life a lot easier to do away with the extra line added to the end of each file. As far as I can tell, there isn't a way to stop this behaviour.

I'd like to either get this sorted or find a text editor similar to Gedit without this issue. I don't really want to resort to using Notepad++ via Wine, but that may be an option. Terminal text editors are also a possibility but I'd rather use one with a GUI for anything more than minor edits to files.

marked as duplicate by karel, user535733, David Foerster, Zanna, Elder Geek Mar 9 '18 at 15:04

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  • In Linux and other Unix-like operating systems non-empty text files end with a new-line character by convention. Do you have a specific reason to break that convention? PHP interpreters should be able to deal just fine with them. – David Foerster Mar 9 '18 at 12:30
  • @DavidFoerster They cause a line break when I'm using PHP includes, reducing markup readability in the output, which I feel is an important aspect during the development process for debugging and the likes. – spacer GIF Mar 9 '18 at 20:21

There is a conf in gedit that can correct your problem : You can modify it by typing

gsettings set org.gnome.gedit.preferences.editor ensure-trailing-newline false

If you don't like command line tools You can modify it using dconf-editor (sudo apt install dconf-editor if needed)

Then in dconf-editor go to


And change ensure-trailing-newline to false

  • Is there an equivalent setting for Pluma or should I just install Gedit? I found various settings for Pluma in dconf but none relating to trailing newlines. – spacer GIF Mar 8 '18 at 15:14
  • I have no idea for Pluma, sorry – Félicien Mar 8 '18 at 15:15
  • Gedit doesn't look how I remember. Anyway, this seems to work so I'll use it for my newline-sensitive files. – spacer GIF Mar 8 '18 at 15:37

The following editors do not add a trailing newline character, if there is none,

  • leafpad
  • emacs

You can install both via the repositories

sudo apt update
sudo apt install leafpad emacs24

(I checked in 16.04 LTS, and it was the package emacs24 for my emacs.)


  • leafpad is a light-weight GUI editor, that comes with Lubuntu.

  • emacs is a classic editor originally from Unix, and it can be run both with a GUI and in a terminal window. It is very powerful, but has a learning curve.

  • Leafpad isn't what I'm looking for. Emacs was a good suggestion, but I don't think I'll be using it. – spacer GIF Mar 8 '18 at 15:34

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