+23  Q: 

Regex Testing Tools

Hi all,

I know of The Regulator for testing regular expressions. And there's also RegExr for testing regular expressions as well. Does anyone know of other regex testing tools? Do any of these tools allow you to specify which RE engine you're testing against?

I changed this question to community wiki

+8  A: 

RegexBuddy is a weapon of choice

+14  A: 


+21  A: 

According to Jeff's post:

RegexBuddy recommended by most, costs US$ 39.95

If you don't want to pay :

Other tools recommended by SO users include:

rubular is great, online and free...
I love regex coach - it does dynamic searching as you type. The only thing is that it seems like it's gone into hibernation.
aronchick tool nice to start learn regular expression.
+2  A: 

Regexbuddy does all this.

Will Dean
+1  A: 

see the accepted answer to this question: Learning Regular Expressions

Sam Hasler
+3  A: 

RegexBuddy is great!!!

+4  A: 

Rubular is free, easy to use and looks nice.

+7  A: 

I use Expresso ( It has a lot of nice features for the developer. The Regulator used to be my favorite, but it hasn't been updated in so long and I constantly ran into crashes with complicated RegExs.

Tim Cochran

RegExBuddy so far I concur with and endorse.

+3  A: 

I agree on RegExBuddy, but if you want free or when I'm working somewhere and not on my own system RegExr is a great online (Flash) tool that has lots of pre-built regex segments to work with and does real-time pattern matching for your testing.

Adam Haile
You could carry around a portable installation of RegexBuddy on a USB stick whenever you're not on your own system.
Jan Goyvaerts
+1 .. I like this one a lot!
+3  A: 

If you are an Emacs user, the command re-builder lets you type an Emacs regex and shows on the fly the matching strings in the current buffer, with colors to mark groups. It's free as Emacs.

Sébastien RoccaSerra
+6  A: 

Here are some for the Mac: (Note: don't judge the tools by their websites)

Joseph Pecoraro
I will totally judge tools by their web sites, thank you very much. ;)
+1  A: 

I'll add to the vote of Reggy for the Mac, gonna try out some of the other ones that Joseph suggested and upvote that post tomorrow when my limit gets reset.

+1  A: 

for online: for desktop: The Regex Coach


+1 For Regex Coach here. Free and does the job really well.

Lee Theobald
+1  A: 

I am still a big The Regulator fan.
There are some stability problems but these can be fixed by disableing the Intellisense. It gets mad with some expressions and typos in building an expression.

Would love it if Roy Osherove updated, but looks like he is busy with other things.

Josh Miller
+2  A: 
+1  A: 

RegExr for testing with the Actionscript 3 (whichever standard that may be)

+1  A: 

I like to use this online one: Of course, it'll be javascript regexp, but I've never yet done anything clever enough to notice the difference.

+1  A: 

How much is your time worth? Pay the $40 and get RegexBuddy. I did, and I even upgraded from 2.x version to 3.x. It has paid for itself many times over.

+2  A: 

I use the excellent and free Rad Software Regular Expression Designer.

If you just want to write a regular expression, have a little help with the syntax and test the RE's matching and replacing then this fairly light-footprint tool is ideal.


This is already been talking here. Duplicate.

Mister Dev
Mister Dev you might notice that I asked back on August 28. The "duplicate" was asked on September 11. So I did ask first and the other one is the dupe.
Onorio Catenacci
+2  A: 

In the standard Python installation there is a "Tools/scripts" directory containing

This creates an interactive Tkinter window in which you can experiment with regexs.

+2  A: 

In the past I preferred The Regex Coach for its simplistic layout, instantaneous highlighting and its price (free).

Every once in awhile though I run into an issue with it when trying to test .NET regular expressions. For that, it turns out, it's better to use a tool that actually utilizes the .NET regular expression engine. You can use the Regex Buddy for that. $40 isn't much to pay and Regex Buddy is one of the most powerful regex tools out there. Or you can use yet another free tool: Regex Hero.

Steve Wortham
+3  A: 

Kodos of course. Cause it's Pythonic. ;)

+1  A: 

I personally like the Regular Expression Tester.

It's a free firefox plugin, so always on!

+1  A: 

Also this regex plugin can be useful for eclipse and idea users.