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Morphed Profit (mp) is a console-based editor for programmers.
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Morphed Profit README
 Morphed Profit - Console-based editor for programmers.
 Inspired by Minimum Profit - Programmer Text Editor
 Original Copyright (C) 1991-2004 Angel Ortega <>
 Original Home Page:

This software is GPL. NO WARRANTY. See file 'COPYING' for details.

Morphed Profit has rudimentary UTF-8 support. GTK and Win32 are untested on version 3.2.14 and onwards.  

Compiling & Installing

To compile, just run

	 $ make

and it should build correctly, no errors nor warnings.

If you don't have ncurses but the plain curses (as in many Unix flavours), run

	 $ make CURSES=curses

Also, if you are on Unix and don't have GTK, make will complain; you can
safely ignore it (the curses version will be correctly compiled) or use

	 $ make mp (recommended)

Also, if you (for whatever reasons) only want the GTK interface, do

	 $ make gmp

The previous make target builds the GTK 1.2 version; to build the GTK 2.0
one, just do

	 $ make gtk2

To install it, as root, type

	 # make install

and it will be instaled in /usr/local/bin. If you want it at /usr/bin, do

	 # make install PREFIX=/usr

If you need to build mp static (to use it in, for example, rescue distros),
just compile it as

	 $ make LDFLAGS=-static

If you use win32 and a GNU make version that is not the one that comes
with DJGPP (for example, the cygwin32 one) your system won't be correctly
autodetected; you must use

	 $ make SYSTEM=WIN32

to force it to be win32 and use the lccwin32 compiler.

If you have an odd Unix system lacking the glob() function, do


If you have ncurses and the compilation process complains about an unresolved
symbol 'use_default_colors()', you have an old ncurses; upgrade it or use


Of course, you can also use this if transparency on X terminals annoys you.


mp supports tags as in vi. This means that you can do

	 mp -t ShootPlasmaGun

and it will open the source code file that includes a symbol (function or
variable) called ShootPlasmaGun and that resides in the current directory.
As vi, mp uses the 'tags' file created by the program 'ctags'. There is an
awesome version of this program, called 'Exuberant Ctags', that is able to
recognize other languages that C, notably Perl, Python and millions of
other crap.

Note that mp just needs ctags for building the 'tags' file, not for using
it. This means that, though you don't have ctags in your win32 machine and
you cannot create the tags file, you can use one created in a real
operating system.

Tags are searched as substrings; if more than one tag containing (in any
position) the string you pass is found, a list will be shown to allow you
to select the one you want. If you pass an empty string, all the tags in
the current directory will be shown, making mp look like a very sexy
code browser.

Syntax highlighting

Mp tries to detect the file type by looking inside its contents and,
if failed, by its extension. It correctly detects HTML, XML, C, C++, Perl,
Man pages, RFC822 mail messages, Shell scripts, Ruby, PHP and .po files.
File type detection is also used in inline help.

Inline help

If you press F1, mp takes the word below the cursor and executes man
sending it as an argument (unless the file is recognized as Perl code,
where 'perldoc -f' is used). A new help page is opened in a new (read-only)
window. You can close it as a normal text or swap back to the original
source. On Win32, it's used differently: it spawns Winhelp.exe with the
word as a parameter to the .hlp file defined in the configuration variable

Regular expressions

By default, Minimum Profit makes its search and replace functions using
plain text searching. If you want to use regular expressions, you can
activate the 'Use regular expressions' flag in the Search menu or include
the 'use_regex: 1' key in the configuration file to use always use them.
Regular expressions are not set by default for historical reasons.


Macro (or learning) mode is activated when you hit F10 (you'll notice that you
are recording a macro by an 'R' letter in the status line). Since then, any
key you type will be recorded in an internal buffer. To stop recording, just
hit F10 again. To recall the recorded keys, go to wherever you want, press
F7 and they will be inserted in the current cursor position (macros are
silently limited to 1024 bytes). Any letter or cursor movement key can be

Using mp with mutt

These are the options I use in my .muttrc:

	 set editor="mp --word-wrap 75 --col80 --mode mail"

This line forces mp execution with word wrapping on column 75 and
marking the 80th column for correct message formatting. The --mode mail
switch orders mp to bypass any syntax hilight detection and force it to treat
the file as a mail message, beautifying message headers and '>' quotes. Now
you can write / reply to all your spam in fancy colors.

Executing system commands

The 'System command...' menu option lets you run system commands. If you
run a program as is (for example, 'date'), mp just reads its standard
output and inserts it into cursor position. If you precede it by a |
(pipe) symbol (as in '|lpr') it runs the command sending the current file
being edited as the program's standard input. This is useful for printing
or sending a text by email. Of course, this doesn't work in win32 (even if
it did, it couldn't be useful. How many win32 programs makes standard
I/O, or any other standard thing?).

About mp & tabs

*NOTE:* Minimum Profit used to have a special treatment for tabulators
(\t characters) that could not work as expected in some environments, so
this paragraph was a caveat about it. This is no longer true; you can
use tabs as in every other text editor of the world.


Aren't you fed up of filesystem travelling in search of a block of text
you usually insert into every file (like the license covering your
software)? I am. No more find && grep && cut && paste. Say no to it just now.

Mp templates are stored in $HOME/.mp_templates and have a name (a line of
text preceded by two % characters) and a body of text. When you hit
Ctrl-U, all template names you defined are showed on screen in a list for
you to just move over and push ENTER and by magical arts be inserted into
current opened file's cursor position. And for the sake of sloth, you can
open the template file directly from the Edit menu.

Additional tools

The tools/ directory holds mp_doccer, a small Perl script that extracts
specially marked comments from C source code files and builds beautiful
HTML documentation. See the README file there.

Win32 version configuration

Several parameters could be set in the Win32 registry in previous versions
of Minimum Profit; now, there is only one value to register, as the other
ones can be defined in the configuration file: the HOME directory.
So, the only key is "HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Minimum Profit\Home", and
is supposed to hold the drive:\path where the .mprc configuration file
can be found (so it can be shared between machines or even platforms).
All other run-time values can be configured there. The mp.reg file,
included in the source code or binary distribution package, can be used to
set this value.

Misc Notes

 * There are many other programs called mp, as the Mail Processor,
   MultiPlan and many more. Of course, this is just a problem of the
   polluted two-letter namespace for programs and the coincidence is
   purely incidental and accidental. Also, there are many software
   companies with names similar to mp or med or pro or medpro, but no one
   is related to this program. Many people (i.e. Debian people) use to
   rename it to mped to avoid collisions.
 * Though it's said that mp stands for Multieditor Professional, other
   voices relate it to 'Minimum Profit', 'Miscellaneous Pathology' and
   'Meaningless Program'. Other user contributions are 'Mammuthus
   Primigenius', 'More Procrastination' and 'Multiple Personalities'.
 * Martin D�ring helped debugging the buggy Win32 version (thanks).
 * Of course, there is an easter egg. All cool programs have one.

Angel Ortega
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