Tips & Tricks
Tips & Tricks
Is there a way to import my notes?
Yes. You can now import notes into our desktop app for Windows, Linux, and macOS*. To get started, select File > Import Notes from the app menu, then pick the type of notes you will be importing.
You can also import from our web app! When logged in, click the menu on the top left corner (three horizontal lines), then click on Settings and choose the Tools tab. Finally, click on Import Notes.
The options are:
- Simplenote exports (.json)
- Plain text files, including Markdown files (.txt or .md)
- Evernote export (.enex — only supported in the desktop app)
You can browse the notes you want to import or drag and drop a file into the import window. The app takes care of the rest. If you’re importing notes with Markdown formatting and you’d like to keep them that way, check the Enable Markdown on all notes box and they’ll be automatically configured as Markdown notes in Simplenote.
Note: The import tool will import all content in the export file as new notes. It will not merge new changes to existing notes or ignore duplicate notes under your Simplenote account.
*A quick note, Mac users! To use the importer, make sure you’re using the Electron version of the app, available here. The standard version of the app available in the Mac App Store doesn’t support importing yet.
Is there some way to export my notes?
You can backup your notes by exporting them from our web app. When logged in, click the menu on the top left corner (three horizontal lines), then click on Settings and choose the Tools tab. Finally, click on Export Notes.
You can export your notes from the Android app by opening the navigation drawer, tapping the Settings item in the drawer, and tapping the Export data option under the Account section. You will be shown the system file explorer where you can choose to save your data locally or remotely via services like Google Drive if you have a Google account on the device. You will also be able to edit the file name, which is
simplenote.json by default.
Desktop app (Linux, Windows, macOS*)
You can also export notes in the desktop app at File > Export Notes. Either method will download a .zip file of all your notes. The filename for each individual note is the first line of the note.
*To export notes on macOS, make sure you’re using the Electron version of the app, available here. The standard version of the app available in the Mac App Store doesn’t support exporting yet.
How can I add a checklist?
On our mobile apps, you’ll find a new button in the editor toolbar to add a checklist. On Desktop, head to Format → Insert Checklist. Nested Checklists are also supported, in case you need an extra level of organization.
How can I share a note or collaborate with others?
If you’d like others to view and edit one of your notes or you’d like to collaborate with others, use the Collaborate panel in the Action menu (the ellipsis icon) on the note you want to share and enter their email address. The shared note will then pop up in their list of notes if they have a Simplenote account.
If they don’t have a Simplenote account to access the note in the app, they can create one at https://app.simplenote.com/signup/.
If you’d like to share a view-only version, you can use the publish to web feature. Please note that by publishing your note, everyone with the link to the published note will be able to view the content. Avoid publishing the note if it contains sensitive data not meant for public access.
How can I change the language?
You can change the language on Android and iOS by changing it from your device settings. At the moment Simplenote is not localized in Linux, Windows, or on the web.
How can I change the font?
While you can’t change the font type in the app, you can change the font size with the built-in options in the Android, Electron (Linux and Windows), and the Mac app.
For the iOS app, you can change the font size in the iOS settings: https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT202828. Please note that the changes will affect all apps on the device.
For the web app, you can adjust the font size using the browser’s shortcut, such as Ctrl/Cmd plus + to increase the font size or Ctrl/Cmd plus – to decrease the font size.
Tap the Navigation drawer, go to Settings, and tap Font size. Select the desired font size that are available: Extra small, Small, Normal, Large, and Extra large.
Electron (Linux and Windows)
Go to the View menu and select the Zoom In or Zoom Out option to adjust the font size. If you’d like to reset the font size to default, choose the Actual Size option.
Go to the View menu and select Font Size to change the font size. Select the Bigger or Smaller option based on your preference. You can also select the Reset option to change the font to the default size.
How can I sort the notes?
The Simplenote app supports these note sorting options: Modified: Newest, Modified: Oldest, Created: Newest, Created: Oldest, Name: A-Z, and Name: Z-A. To access the sorting options for each app, please refer to the respective steps in the section below.
Android and iOS
To sort the notes on the Android or iOS app, tap the Navigation drawer, go to Settings, tap the Sort order option, and select one of the sort options.
Electron (Linux and Windows)
Click the View menu and select Sort Type. The available options are Date modified, Date Created, and Alphabetical. Click the “Reversed” option if you want the notes sorted reversely.
On the Mac app, the note sorting option is at Simplenote > Settings… (or Preferences… on older macOS) > Note sort order.
On the web app, you can access the note sorting option by clicking the Navigation drawer, going to Settings, selecting the Display tab, and scrolling down to the SORT BY section.
What are the keyboard shortcuts available?
Tap Ctrl , to see a list of shortcuts available on the current screen. A list of all shortcuts is below.
|New Note||Ctrl Shift I|
|Open Search||Ctrl Shift S|
|Toggle Checklist||Ctrl Shift C|
|Toggle Preview||Ctrl Shift P|
|Toggle List||Ctrl Shift L|
|Show Information||Ctrl I|
|Show History||Ctrl H|
|Show Share||Ctrl S|
|Show Shortcuts||Ctrl ,|
Electron (Linux, Windows)
Type Ctrl / to view all shortcuts. Here are some common ones:
|New Note||Ctrl Shift I|
|Search Notes||Ctrl Shift S|
|Insert a checklist item||Ctrl Shift C|
|Toggle focus mode||Ctrl Shift F|
|Toggle Markdown preview||Ctrl Shift P|
|Increase font size||Ctrl +|
|Decrease font size||Ctrl -|
|Reset font size||Ctrl 0|
|Show keyboard shortcuts||Ctrl /|
|New Note||Command N|
|Print Note||Command P|
|Move focus to search field||Command L|
|Increase font size||Command +|
|Decrease font size||Command -|
|Reset font size||Command 0|
|Delete note||Shift Command Backspace|
Can I use Simplenote offline?
All Simplenote apps are designed to be used offline. You can access your notes in the apps without an internet connection, provided you have signed in and downloaded all your notes when you’re online.
However, the web app is slightly different in that it requires an internet connection to access the browser tab at https://app.simplenote.com. If you’re already offline when you want to open the web app, it won’t be accessible. With that said, we have a workaround solution for you, so read on.
To access your notes in the web app offline, use a browser that supports Progressive Web Apps (such as Chrome, Edge, or Firefox with an appropriate extension). By installing the app as a Progressive Web App when you are online and logged in to your Simplenote account, you’ll have offline access to Simplenote on your desktop.
For mobile and Mac users, we recommend using native apps, which you can download from the Google Play Store and App Store.
Can I print my notes?
Open your browser printing options and choose the option to print the selection. Different browsers will offer different options for this.
Open your note, and publish it to web. Open the link in your browser (might differ depending on your browser app), and Share the link. You will see “Print” as an option.
Electron (Linux, Windows)
Open your note and use the File -> Print menu option or Ctrl P.
Open your note, click on the Info in the panel, and select “Send.” You will see “Print” as an option.
Open Simplenote, and click on the “Note” settings. You will see the option to Print your note using your system’s preferences.
How does syncing work?
All notes are synced between your device, the web app, and any desktop apps that you might have downloaded. When you create, edit, or delete notes in any of these locations, they automatically and wirelessly sync to the other locations as well as soon as you open the app.
Can I use Markdown?
Open a note for editing then select the Actions icon (the icon with three dots in a circle at the very top of the screen) and then check the option next to “Markdown”.
You can enable and disable Markdown on a per-note basis by tapping the ellipsis action in the top app bar while viewing a note and tapping the Markdown checkbox. Simplenote Android will remember the last time you enabled or disabled Markdown on a note and apply that setting when notes are created.
Markdown on Android does not support HTML tags. Entering something like
<img> will show the tag exactly as it is written and not formatted. The supported syntax is shown below.
To use single spacing, add two spaces (
To create a heading, add number signs (
#) in front of a word or phrase. The number of number signs you use should correspond to the heading level.
# Heading 1 ## Heading 2 ### Heading #### Heading 4 ##### Heading 5
To bold text, add two asterisks (
**) or underscores (
__) before and after a word or phrase. To italicize text, add one asterisk (
*) or underscore (
_) before and after a word or phrase. To emphasize text with bold and italics at the same time, add any combination of three asterisks (
***) or underscores (
___) before and after a word or phrase.
**Bold** *Italic* _Italic_ ***Bold/Italic*** _**Bold/Italic**_ __*Bold/Italic*__ ___Bold/Italic___
To create a blockquote, add a chevron pointing right (
>) in front of a paragraph.
To denote a word or phrase as code inline with other text, enclose it in backticks (
To create code blocks, add three backticks (
```) before and after the block of text. Alternatively, indent every line of the block by at least four spaces (
``` Code Block ```
To create an unordered list, add dashes (
-), plus signs (
+), asterisks (
*), or bullet points (
•) in front of line items.
- Dash 1 - Dash 2 - Dash 3
- Dash 1
- Dash 2
- Dash 3
+ Plus 1 + Plus 2 + Plus 3
- Plus 1
- Plus 2
- Plus 3
* Asterisk 1 * Asterisk 2 * Asterisk 3
- Asterisk 1
- Asterisk 2
- Asterisk 3
• Bullet 1 • Bullet 2 • Bullet 3
- Bullet 1
- Bullet 2
- Bullet 3
To create a checklist, add a dash (
-), space (
) surrounding a space (
x) in front of the items.
- [x] Checked 1 - [x] Checked 2 - [x] Checked 3 - [ ] Unchecked 1 - [ ] Unchecked 2 - [ ] Unchecked 3
To create an ordered list, add line items with numbers followed by periods.
1. Ordered 1 2. Ordered 2 3. Ordered 3
- Ordered 1
- Ordered 2
- Ordered 3
To create a table, use three or more hyphens (
---) to create each column’s header, and use pipes (
|) with a space (
Header 1 | Header 2 --- | --- Row 1 Column 1 | Row 1 Column 2 Row 2 Column 1 | Row 2 Column 2
|Header 1||Header 2|
|Row 1 Column 1||Row 1 Column 2|
|Row 2 Column 1||Row 2 Column 2|
To create a horizontal rule, use three or more asterisks (
***), dashes (
---), or underscores (
___) on a line by themselves.
*** --- ___
To create a link, enclose the link text in brackets (e.g.,
[Link]) and then follow it immediately with the URL in parentheses (e.g.,
To create an image, put an exclamation mark (
!) before the enclosed image text in brackets (e.g.,
![Image]) and then follow it immediately with the URL in parentheses (e.g.,
Electron (Linux, Windows)
First, enable it on your note by selecting the Info panel icon and toggle the Markdown setting.
To get started with text formatting, check out the basics. Here’s a small sampling of what you can do with Markdown:
# heading 1
## heading 2
### heading 3
**_Italics and Bold_**
– Thing 1
– Thing 2
– Thing 3
Embed an image:
Click on the Info panel icon and toggle the markdown setting. Once enabled, you can swipe left to preview your markdown notes, and swipe right to continue editing.
How does publishing work?
Publishing notes is a way to share notes on the web for others to read. Just tap the Action panel icon (the ellipsis icon) when viewing a note, then tap Publish. Within seconds you’ll be able to share a link to get the word out.
Please note that by publishing your note, everyone with the link to the published note will be able to view the content. Avoid publishing the note if it contains sensitive data not meant for public access.
What’s the maximum length of a note?
You can create very long notes if you absolutely have to, but we don’t recommend making notes longer than several thousand words. Huge notes can take a long time to process both in the web app and on your device.
You can break long notes up into multiple notes and link between them using internal links.
How many notes can I make?
We don’t currently place any restrictions on the number of notes you can make, as long as you’re not abusing the system.
How do internal links work?
Internal links allow you to link to one note from within another note. You can read more about how to use them on this blog post: https://simplenote.com/2020/11/03/introducing-internal-links/
How can I organize my notes?
You can organize your notes by adding tags to a note at the bottom of the note editing screen. There isn’t a hard limit on the number of tags you can add to a note, but we do not recommend adding more than 10 as it’ll be challenging to keep track and manage.
To search notes by a tag, enter
tag: followed by the tag name in the search bar. For example, if you want to see the list of notes tagged with
tag:groceries in the search bar.
While you can filter notes by tags temporarily this way, you can’t hide notes with certain tags added from the All Notes list.
I accidentally deleted a note. Can I recover it?
Yes, all deleted notes go into your Trash. To see the notes that are in your Trash, you need to view the “Trash” tag. On Android and iOS, simply return to your main notes list and open the tags drawer. You’ll see “Trash” below the “All Notes” row. In the web app, hover over the tag in your note list, and select Trash.
When viewing your Trash, you can choose to restore a previously deleted note by swiping from right to left on the note then by tapping “restore.” It will then appear back inside All Notes.
I lost a note or some text from a note. What can I do?
In the vast majority of cases, Simplenote’s synchronization works great. We handle millions of synchronization requests each day without any problems. But if you do lose your data, even just a single character, and even if it’s not our fault, we want to hear about it. The integrity of your notes is our top priority. Any form of data loss is completely unacceptable.
The first thing is to check the note history, most Simplenote apps support viewing previous versions of a note. Be sure to check the history of any blank or duplicate notes you can see. Most of the time you will find your content there. If not, you may want to check the Trash and restore the note from there. Notes put in the Trash still retain their version history.
We’re in the process of adding additional safeguards and fallback measures for your notes. Please contact us regarding any form of data loss and try to provide as many details as you can remember about the circumstances that caused the problem so we can ensure it won’t happen again in the future.
I transferred my data to a new phone. Now, when I sign into my account it is empty.
Try following these steps to retrieve your notes:
- If you have multiple Simplenote accounts, make sure you’re signed in to the correct one.
- Sign in on a different device or on the web at app.simplenote.com. This can help determine if the issue is with your new device or with your Simplenote account.
Sync isn’t working. My notes are not syncing to another device. What should I do?
The first question is: are you signed into the same account in the Simplenote app?
The web app reflects what has been synced to our server. If your notes are not synced to another device, and you’ve confirmed you are signed into the same account on the apps, please log in to the web app at https://app.simplenote.com to check if the notes are correct and up-to-date.
If they are, you can safely log out and log back into the Simplenote app on all your devices. When you log in again, all of the notes stored on the Simplenote server will be re-synced, which should resolve any syncing issues going forward.
If you are signed into the same account but don’t see the correct notes in the web app and another Simplenote app, please follow these steps:
- Back up your unsynced notes by exporting them. Save the exported notes on your device.
- Log out from the app and log back into the Simplenote app on all your devices.
- Import the unsynced notes you backed up earlier to the Simplenote app.
- Check the web app again to confirm if the notes are synced.
We also recommend that you check your network connection to rule out if it’s a network issue on your devices.
If you’re still having trouble, please contact us and share as many details as you can.
Warning: Please do not log out from the app or clear the app data before making sure the notes are backed up or synced to the web app. Doing so will cause permanent data loss.
How to check my network connection?
If you see a sync error in the app, we recommend that you check the following:
- Do you have a firewall, VPN, or ad-blocker active on your device that could interrupt your network connection?
- Are you using any ad-blocking or filtering software on your network? Some examples would be PiHole or AdGuard.
If this is the case, we recommend disabling these services or adding the following URLs to the allowlist:
Once that is done, please recheck if the issue persists.
If it doesn’t seem to be a network issue, please follow these steps:
- Make sure your notes are up-to-date on https://app.simplenote.com. Back up your unsync notes if needed.
- Log out from the app
- Log in again
Are my notes encrypted in storage?
Unlike a lot of other services, however, by default your notes in Simplenote are always encrypted when they’re in transit across a network. This is important. It’s when your personal information is most vulnerable. We believe that all modern services should provide this level of protection by default.
You have my email address…
We respect the privacy of our users, and we’ll never give email addresses to third parties.
Does Simplenote encrypt my notes during synchronization?
How can I contact you?
If the information on this page doesn’t answer your questions, please post your questions in our forum and share as many details as you can (e.g., device details): forums.simplenote.com
Kindly check out the forum posting guidelines if you’re new to the forum: https://forums.simplenote.com/forums/topic/guidelines-for-posting/
How much does Simplenote cost?
Simplenote is a free service provided by your friends at Automattic.
What happened to Dropbox support?
Simplenote no longer supports Dropbox sync.
Can I use Simplenote without creating an account?
Simplenote supports offline usage but requires an account to access the app features and sync your notes across all devices. You may want to consider the Day One app, which supports storing your data on your device’s storage without syncing to our server if you don’t create a sync account.
I forgot my password. What do I do?
To reset your password, visit app.simplenote.com/forgot. Enter your email address there and a password reset link will be sent to you.
Can I close my account?
Yes, this can be done via the Simplenote web app only:
Sign in to the web app and go to your account settings. You’ll find an option there to delete your Simplenote account.
Please note that all your notes will be permanently deleted, and your account details (like your email address) will be purged. If you’d like to keep a copy of your notes, we recommend you export them before closing your account.
How do I change the email address I use to sign in?
You can change your email address by visiting the Settings page in the web app. At the top, you’ll see your address along with a “change” link. Click that link and you’ll be able to enter your new address. A confirmation email will be sent to your old address.
How do I cancel a Sustainer Plan?
Go into the App Store on your device, click on your profile in the upper right, and Subscriptions. If you use an Apple device you can use this link to cancel in a browser. If you use an Android device you can use this link.
How do I suggest a feature?
Thanks for helping us improve Simplenote!
We recommend searching our forums to suggest a feature request if the same suggestion is already posted. If so, you can comment on the post to add a “vote” to it. Otherwise, you’re more than welcome to create a new forum post and let us know.
You’re also invited to check out the Day One app, another product by Automattic Inc., which owns Simplenote. Features like media attachments not supported in Simplenote can be found on Day One.