Like this:

A
B
C

D
E
F

G
H
I

To this:

A     B     C

D     E     F

G     H     I

It's a 2500 rows file, so i wouldn't just ctrl+j it.

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Hit Ctrl+H to access the Replace dialog, tick Regular expression, and enter the above expressions. Here it is in text:

Find what: (.+)\r\n(.+)\r\n(.+)
Replace with: \1\t\2\t\3\t (the last \t is optional; you won't visually notice any difference if you remove it, unless you are expecting the line to end with a tab character)

Replace \r\n in the "Find what:" with:

  • \n if you are editing a file with UNIX-style line endings (linefeed only)
  • \r\n if you are editing a file with Windows-style line endings (carriage return followed by line feed; in this case, you don't need to modify the original regex)
  • \r if you are editing a file with traditional Mac-style line endings (carriage return only)

You can find out which line ending you're using by examining the status bar at the bottom of the Notepad++ window. It will say "Dos\Windows", etc.


If your file has inconsistent line endings (which is a bad thing in general, but not impossible) and you want to replace all possible types of newlines in one go:

Find what: (.+)(\r|\n)+(.+)(\r|\n)+(.+)
Replace with: \1\t\3\t\5\t

You can learn more about regular expressions here.

This will replace all linebreak, not preceeded or followed by another line break, with a tabulation.

  • Ctrl+H
  • Find what: [^\r\n]\K\R(?!\R)
  • Replace with: \t
  • check Wrap around
  • check Regular expression
  • Replace all

Explanation:

[^\r\n]     : not a line break
\K          : forget all we have seen until this position
\R          : any kind of line break
(?!\R)      : negative lookahead, make sure we don'thave a line break after

Replacement:

\t          : a tabulation

Result for given example:

A   B   C

D   E   F

G   H   I

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