These are all Windows PC freeware, with graphical user interfaces, tested and working on Windows 8.1.x. They may be useful for those who occasionally have to sort and clean and combine lists in text form, and who do not have access to paid tools such as the sophisticated TextPipe Pro or the Sobolsoft utilities, or to advanced training in Excel and regex commands.

The relatively simple:

1. Text Cleanup 2.0.

It “fixes” text automatically when you copy-paste it, according to various cleaning options you can save presets for. Its main use is to unwrap a chunk of text that has hard line-breaks, when copied to the clipboard. Or to place a new blank line between each line. This vital software only recently went freeware.

Can be used in combination with the free Clipboard Magic which keeps copies of all Clipboard text, and then allows you to “Copy all clips to clipboard”.

2. List Numberer.

This can do what Notepad++ can’t yet do, and does easily what Excel can only seem to with complex fiddly formulas and macros. Most useful for dealing with repeated blocks of data in a list (e.g. labelling them 1234, 1234, 1234), to enable mass deletion of certain lines in a text editor.

3. Text Magician 1.3.

Various operations including append text to the start and end of each line, delete multi-line blocks between X and Y, and more. (If you have ‘.DLL missing’ problems, either go find the required .DLL file, or use Version 1.0 which does not have that problem).

4. Duplicated Finder from AKS-Labs.

Easily find and extract the duplicates from a single list. Useful for checking for the presence of a few duplicate URLs in a long list of uniques, for instance. (See also the free Duplicate Master addin for Excel).

5. Excel example sheet: compare two lists and extract non-duplicates.

My free ready-made .XLS sheet for Excel, with formula. The second list is a jumbled up variant of the first, with some new additions in it. These additions are extracted and placed alongside. (Excel is not free, admittedly, but my guess is you could probably get the same formula working in whatever LibreOffice has as its Excel equivalent).

The potentially quite complex:

1. Notepad++.

The code programmer’s text editor. Column numbering (though it can’t do what List Numberer — see above — can do); sophisticated Regex (though the more sophisticated, the more difficult to remember and to get it working); Remove blanks lines (provided you can remember the menu sequence within its complex UI); and much more. Intensive research is often needed to learn how to do a particular bit of sophisticated text manipulation, and it’s also easy to overlook its most powerful features such as per-line list bookmarking. The devs have recently fumbled a move to a different plugin structure, and thus you may need to run the latest 64-bit version alongside an older 32-bit version in order to run PythonScript and older plugins such as Multiline Search/Replace (appears under ‘Tool Bucket’), Column Sorting and Line Filter 2.

2. WildGem 1.3.

A tool for building and testing ‘regular expression’ or ‘regex’ commands. Find and replace with these commands, and see the resulting changes (if any) in realtime. This software can hide some of the more common ‘regex’ snippets behind more user-friendly visual icons. Useful for instantly testing ‘regex’ command formulas you find, to see if they work, without having to wrestle with Notepad++. This is portable Windows software. In order to save your UI layout preferences, it must be run in Administrator mode.

3. CSVed.

A CSV file editor, an alternative you may prefer to behemoth software such as Excel. Move lists and sections around, split lists, add to lines. Appears to lack ability to do column numbering for lists (for which see List Numberer, above).

4. Openview’s Index Generator 7.0.

Dedicated to creating a back-of-the-book index for a book. This one is more about the creation of the list, admittedly, but it has various filtering options while doing this. The curious lack of a ‘filter for capitalised words only’ filter make it far less useful than its paid competitor. Asks for a donation on exit. (Note that Softpedia’s review states you “upload a document to the program”, and this wording may mislead the casual reader into thinking this is partly online cloud-linked software. It isn’t, it’s standalone Windows software).

5. There’s a free Selected HTML page-content to Markdown addon for chrome-based browsers, and also a Markdown to BBCode converter.

May be useful if either Markdown or BBCode is easier to work with, re: sorting and cleaning list-shaped content grabbed from a Web page. The latter is a self contained javascript-based Web page and can work offline, just save the page locally and re-open it.