Archived FAQs (see FAQ category for all current FAQs)


This is the main FAQ for Atom. It has links to other FAQs for more specific items and links to Discuss topics, GitHub Issues and links to other information around the web. If there is something you think should be here and isn’t, let us know!

Links to Other FAQs

Q: Is there an Atom roadmap?

A: Atom Roadmap to 1.0

Q: Is there a list of Best Practices for Atom use in general or package writing in specific?

A: FAQ: Best Practices

Q: I have a question that I’d like to have an official answer for …

A: List of official answers captured from the forum

Common Questions

Q: What is that vertical line in the editor view?

A: That’s the Wrap Guide, it indicates your preferred line length (which defaults to 80). Use the Settings for “Soft Wrap” and “Soft Wrap at Preferred Line Length” to find the ideal behavior with your line length.

To customize further, e.g. to set preferences based on the used language, read through: What is this separator line in the document view?support

Q: What tool is being used to create the animated GIFs I see posted here and in Atom bug reports?

A: Mostly LICEcap, though some have other preferences. For more discussion read through: What gif creator is atom team using?



Q: How do I style the find-and-replace results or the flash that happens when you cycle to the next result?

A: Styling the find and replace result “flash” support

Q: How do I use different font sizes depending on screen resolution or DPI?

A: Editor different font sizes for different screen resolutions?

Q: How do I load non-system fonts for Atom to use?

A: You’ll have to create a package so that the font you want to load is made available to Atom as an Atom resource through the atom:// scheme. The following topic list the steps needed to create such a package: How do I load google fonts into my editor’s styles?

Commands and Keybindings

Q: How can I create a keybinding that executes two pre-existing commands?

A: You can create a command that composes the two commands and then create a keybinding for that.

See this Stack Overflow answer for details.


Q: How can I speed up my package start up?

A: Avoid requiring too many modules straight, use lazy initialization and serialization instead:

How To Speed Up Your Packagespackages

Q: Why is Atom so slow?

A: Why is Atom so slow


Q: What are some tips on how to write a good bug report?

A: See this post:
Question about patches from github

Use the bug-report package. It generates a bug report template for you in Markdown including all relevant version numbers and, if you supply a GitHub API token, will post it to GitHub for you directly from the editor.


Q: Is Atom open source?

A: We are open sourcing all of Atom under the MIT license. Atom: free and open source for everyone

Q: How will Atom be priced? What will it cost?*

A: Starting today (6 May 2014), Atom is available for download to everyone–completely free and open source. Atom: free and open source for everyone

Q: Will we be able to make pull requests?

A: Please do!

Technical Issues

Q: Having problems with your Enter or Tab keys not working and Emmet installed?

A: If you have the emmet package installed, it is most likely the cause. See: Return & Tab Keys no longer work

Q: How do I include version control system ignored paths from the tree view?

A: Exclude VCS Ignored Paths Toggle Not Respected

Q: Can we write packages in JavaScript? Style with CSS? Use JSON?

A: Is coffeescript required for developing plug-ins?packages

Q: Will Atom be able to handle big files?

A: Unable to open files more than 1Mb?

Q: Having problems with Atom on Windows?

A: Please make sure you are on the latest version of Atom by following these instructions:

Windows Installer and Auto Updater

Technology Choices

Q: Why did the Atom team choose LESS instead of [my favorite styling language]?

A: SASS instead of LESS?

The above answer is also probably broadly applicable to “CoffeeScript instead of [my favorite JavaScript dialect]”.

Q: What’s with the caffeinated language everywhere? Can we not just use Javascript to hack Atom?

A: Both Coffeescript and Javascript are fully supported for Atom-related development. Although the core team prefer Coffeescript (most documentation assumes it as well), feel free to use Javascript instead of any coffee file.

See this topic as well, for a more in-depth discussion: Why coffeescript?

Common Feature Requests

Q: Will there be more Git integration? (Commit, push, checkout, etc)

A: Version control support?

Useful help outside of

  • (This is a dead link)
  • IRC Channel #atom on

Nice. We don’t have to do it together. You’ve already done it. (grin)

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The title of the answer is irrelevant to the question, I think.

FYI - you can also link to some other FAQs like and .

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You are correct thank you.

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