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What's new in v2.6.0

Abdullah AttaAugust 09, 2023

Many weeks in waiting, the v2.6.0 release brings one of the most amazing features so far: Custom themes along with a bunch of other UX improvements & bug fixes.

Read on to find out everything that's new in v2.6.0 and what we will be working on in the coming months.

Custom themes

Imagine opening Notesnook and wanting it to look a certain way. Maybe you'd like the left navigation bar to be black with green text on it, maybe your theme is beige and you want everything too look just right. Whatever the case, now you can do just that and more.

Before you cry out in horror imagining how much work something like that would require, I want to give you a "sneak peak" at the potential our theming engine has.

Monokai theme on Notesnook
Notesnook styled using the famous Monokai theme.

Normally, if you want to change how something looks you'd be required to have the arcane knowledge of CSS. That's how Obsidian's does it (and there's nothing wrong with that). However, there's the obvious problem of not everyone knowing how to work around in CSS.

That is why we built Notesnook's theming engine to be as simple as possible. If you know colors, you know how to build a theme for Notesnook. For example, the above Monokai theme is just a 5 KB JSON file containing around 145 lines in total.

The best part of all this is that it "just works" on all platforms. A single theme can be used, as is, across mobile, web, desktop, and the web clipper. How cool is that!

The Theme Builder

But JSON is also quite complex too, you might say, and you'd be right. That's why we created the Theme Builder. It's a 100% GUI way of building themes for Notesnook. Here's a quick sneak peak.

The Notesnook Theme Builder
Me tweaking the Monokai theme in the Theme Builder.

The best thing about the Theme Builder is that it is 100% live & real-time. You don't have to reload the app in order to see the changes you made — they are reflected as soon as you make them.

Live updating in the Theme Builder.

You can try it out at We also wrote a guide on how to use the Theme Builder, which you can refer to here.

What about the old accent colors?

Unfortunately, we had to ditch the old accent colors in favor of themes. But don't worry, we will be adding back all the accent colors as themes very soon.

Are themes going to be pro?

Currently, there's no restriction in place so anyone can use any theme they like but eventually, we will add Pro themes that can only be used

How to create your own theme?

We have added in-depth documentation and help regarding how to create, preview & test your own theme in your help. You can check it out here.

Improved copy/pasting

A note taking app is nothing if it cannot preserve the formatting of whatever comes into or goes out of it. Previously, copying things from Notesnook would completely destroy its formatting, adding empty lines where there should be none, converting single spaced paragraphs into double spaced ones etc. If you have been a Notesnook user, you already now how frustrating that is.

Well, good news for you then! In this release, we have made a bunch of fixes to the way our copy/pasting works:

  1. Copying a single list item no longer copies it as a list but as a paragraph
  2. Copying multiple list items no longer add empty lines around each list item
  3. Copying content to & from Notesnook now follows the Double spaced paragraph setting.

RTL improvements

If you do a lot of writing in RTL languages (Urdu, Arabic etc.), this release will be your favorite for sure! Why do I say that? Well, take a look yourself:

  1. You now only need to set the text direction once, and everything else just follows it automatically. Previously, you'd have to constantly align different nodes to the right which was cumbersome and annoying.
  2. The title now automatically changes the text direction to RTL if it detects RTL text. How cool is that?
  3. RTL notes in the notes list will now automatically be aligned right-to-left.

Syntax highlighting and rendered Math in exports

If you do lots of printing or exporting, good news for you! Notesnook will now automatically syntax highlight all the code blocks and render all the math as LaTeX. Here's how it looks:

Syntax highlighted code blocks in PDF export
Syntax highlighted code blocks in PDF export

Keyboard shortcuts in menus

While keyboard shortcuts are still not implemented, we are slowly preparing the UI for the big change. Starting from this release, you'll now see the keyboard shorcuts in a few places around the editor.

Keyboard shortcuts in menus
Keyboard shortcuts in editor menus

Bug fixes & minor improvements

And of course, what's a new major release without a bunch of bug fixes and QoL improvements? Here's the full list of "worthy" bugs that we fixed:

  1. Fixed issue where entering Monograph password closed the Publish dialog
  2. Copy button on code blocks will no longer be disabled in readonly mode
  3. Fixed color picker height when the editor toolbar is at the bottom
  4. Pressing the Tab key in the Title will now move the focus to the editor
  5. Respect empty paragraph lines when printing or exporting to PDF/HTML
  6. Don't show "Failed to unlock vault" error when exporting a single unlocked note
  7. All input fields now follow the current color scheme
  8. Prevent unintentional saving when opening a note
  9. Respect text direction when adding blocks like heading, lists etc.
  10. Fix "Dynamic module import is disabled" error when logging in on Firefox ESR & Tor Browser
  11. Prevent scroll jump & selection loss when toggling focus mode
  12. Fixed issue where caret would keep jumping to the end when making edits in the sticky editor title
  13. Overhaul the logger implementation to be less IO intensive
  14. Fix spell checker on desktop app
  15. Fixed issue where embeds would not render in readonly mode
  16. Format time & date on reminders according to the format specified in the Settings
  17. Bring app to front if user tries to start a new instance of Notesnook
  18. Show progress when restoring large encrypted backups

What's next?

A few urgent things on the schedule are:

  1. Fix how we store & sync tags, colors, and settings.
  2. Improve performance of image attachments.
  3. Roll out first iteration of the new search engine.
  4. Explore note linking.
Abdullah Atta
Abdullah AttaLead developer of Notesnook
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