I've been using Hog Bay's Plain Text app to edit text files on my Dropbox for the last few years; but as of two days ago it's no longer syncing. Presumably this is because Dropbox have discontinued support for this third party app, since it's no longer available in the App Store.

I'm now looking for a replacement app with the same functionality as Plain Text version 1.7.5. Have found one called WriteUp which may fit the bill; but not sure if it has everything I want?

I need to edit simple text files with extension .txt (not interested in richtext). Once edited the files must be saved in the same format, i.e. as .txt files. When I open a Dropbox folder, the app must immediately download all the files in that folder automatically (so they're stored locally on my iPad), and sync them to Dropbox as they're edited. (What I don't want is to have the files download only when they're selected for editing; need the whole folder to be downloaded straight away.)

Most importantly I need a built-in search function similar to WinGrep. I.e. It must search all the files in the current folder and all its sub-folders looking for a string of text. Must search both the filenames and the file contents, then provide a list of matching text files so I can select any one for them for editing.

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    Have now tested WriteUp, and discovered it too can no longer sync. Seems Dropbox turned off the v1 API last week: so any apps that still use it have been rendered useless. Am still seeking a replacement app for Plain Text; but not optimistic about finding one. Perhaps someone could suggest an alternative Cloud service and app for syncing text files across all my devices? – Alex111 Oct 3 '17 at 13:26
  • Did you find a suitable app to met your requirements? I'm in the same position, used to use PlainText, but no longer syncs with Dropbox. I've been considering... Byword, iA Writer, Editorial, SyncNotes. (Byword seems to have suddenly jumped from $2.99 to $5.99 in the last few months?) – MrWhite Dec 14 '17 at 0:12
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    I chose Editorial in the end. It has some issues when you're not connected to wifi or 4G/3G: usually it will erase any text files or text edits created when it reconnects and syncs to Dropbox. I tend to use the Apple Notes app instead when I have no data connection, then copy and paste the text into Editorial later. – Alex111 Dec 18 '17 at 12:23
  • I've gone with Editorial as well. Hmm, yes, must admit I do find the Dropbox sync to be a bit hit and miss when editing offline. Renaming ends up duplicating the file (one with the old name and one with the new). Syncing sometimes appears to get stuck in a "loop" and I have to close/open the app and do a manual sync to fix it. I've not actually lost anything yet (although it does look like it sometimes)... files appear to get uploaded back to Dropbox after reconnecting (and manual sync), HOWEVER, sometimes the files then appear empty ("Zero KB") in Editorial! – MrWhite Dec 18 '17 at 22:45
  • The only way to get the file back in Editorial (that I've found) is to edit the (complete) file again on the PC/Mac and resync in Editorial! Simply resyncing without editing did not help. – MrWhite Dec 18 '17 at 22:45

I’ve been using Editorial, which edits files right in Dropbox (so they sync), though mostly for Markdown files (which it has preview support for). I believe it does have a search feature like you describe.

  • Thanks, I might give Editorial a go. Does it work in landscape as well as portrait mode? – Alex111 Oct 2 '17 at 15:52
  • Yes. And supports larger iPad Pros. – David Dunham Oct 2 '17 at 19:45
  • Having read the reviews, it seems Editorial doesn't store any local copies of the text files, which is a deal-breaker for me. – Alex111 Oct 2 '17 at 23:19
  • @Alex111 I would be interested to see the reviews that state that local copies of files are not stored. The Dropbox features page seems to suggest that local copies are downloaded and kept? – MrWhite Dec 14 '17 at 0:01
  • I can't find those particular reviews at this moment, and didn't save the links unfortunately; but they do seem to be confirmed by the fact Editorial loses anything created when it has no data connection. – Alex111 Dec 18 '17 at 12:31

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