Why is Windows only on the roadmap for Atom?


Given the overwhelming dominance of Windows as an operating system, I find it … “interesting”, and personally frustrating, that Atom is only available on OS X.

I’d like to hear the reasoning behind this decision from the people making this amazing editor - that I wish I could use now.

Windows support

I very much doubt that Windows has any dominance in the target audience for Atom, so my guess it’s that simple. Probably aren’t too many Windows machines at Github even.


First, to clarify iOS is a mobile operating system from Apple. You ment to say OS X :wink:

I assume that people who wrote it and use it on a daily basis, use OS X as their main operating system.


Woops, you’re absolutely correct. I’ve edited the OP. Thanks for correcting me.


Relax. The product was released only a couple of days ago. It will get to Windows. The Atom-developers probably just went with OS X because they use that themselves, and knows how to create OS X applications better than Windows applications.


I’m totally relaxed dude. I hope my eagerness to use Atom was the predominant theme of my question. But it does make me wonder why that decision was taken, or maybe it’s like the other answers here in that the product evolved from someone working locally on a pet project (that was OSX because that’s what they use) and they intend to port to Windows and Linux.

My (no longer secret) hope is that Atom will be for text editors what Chrome has become for browsers - awesome. :smile:


I guess mac is the primary os they use at github. If you work on mac computers your primary development target won’t be windows.

It was the same with the github client, it was first released for mac on June 22, 2011 and for windows one year later on May 21, 2012.


Yeah, the guys behind Atom are running this site Github as a pet project, you may have heard of it.


What I mean to say is this: while Windows has - at least have had - some dominance as an end user OS, I’d very much doubt that it is anything close to dominant when it comes to development. Especially when it comes to languages that are popular with users of Sublime, Textmate etc, which probably are the target audience of a code editor like Atom.


@bhofmann I used to use Windows exclusively. It’s a long-standing platform with lots of good behind it. I tried my first Mac in recent years and was surprised at how much better I liked it as a development machine. Perhaps you could save up and acquire one. You won’t regret it.

This could very well be the fastest way for you to be able to use Atom. :smile: Best of luck.


Their git client was also launched to OS X first, then Windows at a later point

It is indeed because they are primarily using OS X at their offices that Windows is last to release.


+1 to upgrading your dev environment to OSX. MSFT is legacy.


I use both OS X and Windows. My primary dev machine is Windows (Xamarin .Net shit), and I’m often in Sublime doing things that VS just can’t / won’t do.

Mark me down as one who would definitely use Atom on a Windows box.

not to mention: the osx keyboard layout is junk for dev IMHO. You really have to contort your fingers to get to keyboard shortcuts


Does this work on linux? Or is it OSX only.


I disagree with the sentiment that the solution to wanting Atom on Windows is to switch to Mac.

For starters, it’s not a full-blown language-or-platform-specific IDE, it’s a programmer’s text editor. Its demographic isn’t restricted to OS X, and (at least most of) the technology it’s built on isn’t OS X specific, so the product shouldn’t be either. Even full IDEs make a point of being cross-platform, unless they’re specifically for developing for a particular OS (Eclipse/Idea vs Visual Studio/XCode)

Furthermore, and I think this is the more important point, many (if not most) developers work in an environment where they don’t get to pick the OS of their workstation. If IT at FooCorp only knows how to manage Windows machines, than the workstation at your desk that has the certificates to connect to your internal network is, in fact, a Windows machine.


This discussion isn’t going to go anywhere productive. For whatever reason, the Atom team has made its roadmap and I believe they’ve heard people’s objections and concerns. All the rest of the stuff (“platform dominance”, “Mac vs. Windows”, etc) is not going to get resolved here.

closed #17