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Q10 - Free Writing Software (Detailed Review)

Updated on March 16, 2012
Q10 is a completely freeware writing software!
Q10 is a completely freeware writing software!

Download Links:

Without Spelling Checker:

With Spelling Checker:

Q10 is a simple, stable, fast and distraction free text editor. Following is a detailed article, full review of the software and tips and guidance as how its functions work. Below are listed all its features and a bit of deficiencies. Go till the end, you might find an amazing software to suit your needs, as I have.

I had been searching a simple, light, distraction-free, fast yet powerful writing software to use as an alternative for Microsoft Office. After some research, I found a software named 'Writeroom'. It was labeled as a distraction free and powerful writing tool, but the only problem I found that this software was for Mac users only.

After some more research, I found a same software for Windows PC. It was named as 'Darkroom'. It was a full-screen text editor with few distractions. I used it but did not find it comfortable. To me, it was a little unsatisfactory. If you will use it, you will get an idea of what I am talking about. Anyway, I kept on with my research journey.

Then I found 'Q10' and I am completely satisfied with it. It is an amazing piece of software and is responsible for doing the bulk of my work now. I am almost over with Microsoft Office and its distraction while I like to play with my words - writing.

Note: This is no affiliate marketing pitch, as Q10 is already a free software. I am just sharing my honest thoughts about this software and helping alike-mind people who love to work in a distraction free environment. Following are some important features of Q10.


When you will open the software, all you will see is a fully vacant black area to type, with no menu. Press F1 to bring the menu.

Features of Q10 - Free Writing Software:

1. Full Screen Text Editor:

Q10 is a full screen text editor. There is only a status bar at the bottom of the screen. There are nothing at the screen apart from you and your text. So you can fully concentrate on your writing rather being distracted with lots of additional buttons that you do not even use.

See the 'TIP' and the screenshot.

This article is written on Q10.
This article is written on Q10.

2. Customization:

When you open Q10, all you see is a black screen with a goldish-yellow type of text. But you can customize the view according to your personal liking. You can change the background color, font color, font style, font size, line spacing, indentation etc to suit you and your writing style.

3. Type-Writer Sound:

This feature may not appeal to many people but it is indeed a very handy tool to have. I do not know, but a type-writer sound feels much better while typing. For me, it increases my typing accuracy, speed and engrosses me a lot more with my typing. Sorry I cannot give a logical reason for it, but it does.


At the bottom right corner, you will see the name; you are currently working on. If you make any changing, you will see a '*' mark at the top of the file name until you save it.

4. Live Statistics - Word Count:

With a full-screen text editor, how do you keep an eye on the word and page count? Logical enough. But here comes in that status bar I was talking about. Q10 constantly updates the word count, page count and characters in that status bar.

The status bar has been made in a way that it automatically blends in with the black screen and does not bring to focus on itself, but it is completely visible. On the bottom life, you can show the word count, page count and characters; while on the bottom right, you will see the file name and time - your computer time (A great feature to have).

Some Important Hot Keys:

Menu = F1

New File = Ctrl + N

Open File = Ctrl + O

Save File = Ctrl + S

Save As = Ctrl + D

Spelling Checker = F7

Notes = Ctrl + H

Undo = Ctrl + Z

Redo = Ctrl + Y

Quit = Ctrl + Q

5. Partial Counters:

With Q10 you can make up to 4 partial word counters to fulfill various needs of your writing. You can count the current writing session, character or the current chapter - whatever you like. And everything is at a touch distance of a hot-key.

6. Change The Length Of The Page:

You need not to be constrained by a 250 words per page limit. You can change the length of the page according to your personal liking and/or need. Everything is easily customizable in Q10.

7. Time Alarm:

You can set an alarm for a timed-writing-sessions. When the alarm goes off, you will get to know how much you wrote. A very good tool for keep personal assessment on check.


With Q10, I can use my laptop quick buttons too.

E.g. I can increase/decrease the brightness of my screen, change the sound volume with the quick buttons without disturbing the text or closing/minimizing the software.

8. Perfectly Portable:

Since Q10 is a single executable file, you can run with a flash drive too, from virtually anywhere possible. It keeps intact the record of the last file when you opens the software.

9. Small and Lightning Quick:

Q10 is a small software. With less than 1MB of space, it is highly stable and lightning fast. You won't need to take a nap until it opens.

10. Spelling Checker:

Q10 also comes with a spelling checker and I found this tool nearly glitch-free. When you are finished with your writing, all you have to do is to press a single button, and the spell-checker will start to correct all your misspelled words.

11. Notes:

Anything you start with ".." (removing the quotation marks) will be saved as a note. On a single hot-key, you can travel through all your notes with utmost comfort and ease. Isn't that great?


With the latest version, you can press Alt+Scroll Down to quickly minimize the software.

12. Autosaving Feature:

Q10 will automatically save your file after a few paragraphs, or you can just go to the settings and change the auto-save timing to suit your need.

13. Totally Free:

For all these features, you do not have to pay anything at all. The software is completely free, and at its website, it is written that it will always be a freeware. You do not have to pay a dime for it.

Although, Q10 is totally free, it still asks you to save your file when you close the software :P


Overall Q10 is an amazing software, but it has its shortcomings too. But I still chose to go with this software, because I found it to be the best in the lot. Some of the deficiencies that I found, are:

1. No Text Decoraters:

You cannot use the bold, italic and underline feature in Q10 (At least I did not find the feature till yet). I tend to use the bold and underline feature quite a lot, so I miss it a bit.

2. No Automatic Spell Check:

Q10's spelling checker does not mention the misspelled words while you are writing or until you hit the button for spelling checker. Though it is not quite a mess, because at the end when you hit the button, you get everything correct. This deficiency offers more distraction free environment while typing but many people still may miss that feature.

3. Only .txt Files:

Q10 creates only .txt files. Hence for creating a .doc or .docx file, you will have to do a little more work.


Overall I found Q10 as a splendid software, and now I do the bulk of my work using this software. (You can see that all the screenshots are from this article that I wrote by Q10). I spent a lot of time finding this, so I shared a detailed review with you all. Hope you enjoy it and may have found it a bit useful. Have a good day and keep writing. And the best thing is, that the software it TOTALLY FREE TO DOWNLOAD! You can at least give it a try, you do not have anything to lose!

Download Links:

Without Spelling Checker:

With Spelling Checker:


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    • profile image


      2 years ago

      Five years after the fact, lol, but it for Underline and Bold, press 'Control P.' or Command P.

      Your experience with Q10 is mine. .. i am doing my a book with it. I love it. so much quieter for the eyes. I use a black screen and color of text to suit my mood. So cool to type with black bg. I just realized I got tired easier because the bright interface over time, is not good for eyes. The darker bg I set is cooling.. Like the difference of a hot summer night, and a cool night. I definitely last longer. Amazing how ms word can drain a person.

    • profile image


      5 years ago

      Hey, i think you also can use the webbased version of Q10! Look at

    • Susan D Tyndall profile image

      Dianne Tyndall 

      6 years ago from Sanderson, Texas

      Great hub with useful need to know info. ;) Thanks!

    • profile image


      8 years ago

      It's great! I use both Word & Q10. Q10 is great for when writing a first draft. Word can be distracting sometimes, so its nice having something that doesn't auto underlines words or have all these extra buttens hanging around. Q10 is just about the writing. When I'm done with a first draft I just copy the file into word and use that for fixing the mistakes I've made. It makes for better writing that way, because it allows you to just get your ideas on paper without worrying about corrections until your done.

    • dahoglund profile image

      Don A. Hoglund 

      8 years ago from Wisconsin Rapids

      I have gotten used to Word although I do have other software.There are some good ones, I know, that are free.

    • chamilj profile image


      8 years ago from Sri Lanka

      Thanks for the information. I must try this software soon.

    • zanaworld profile image

      SA Shameel 

      8 years ago from Bangalore

      thanks HunbbelMeer for this article. I was looking for alternative writing software than Word. While copy from MS Word to HubPages several formatting gets change. for example, space is deleted in hubpages even though I give two spaces between the sentences.

    • tlmcgaa70 profile image


      8 years ago from south dakota, usa

      great are correct about not being able to afford the ones that cost...but the one i use is also free and has many very useful features, including spell check,. it allows you to write in text format, script format, even cartoon format. it is called CeltX. voted up, useful and interesting.

    • Hunbbel Meer profile imageAUTHOR

      Syed Hunbbel Meer 

      8 years ago from Karachi, Pakistan.

      @Leann2800: You are absolutely correct. No body can afford to spend lots of bucks just to try out the software, which he won't even like it later because there are so much crap out in the market. That is why I chose a free writing software and made a detail review about it so that if people like to try this out, they already had known everything about it.

      Thanks for your comment and votes :)

    • profile image


      8 years ago

      Up and useful. I am sure many people need a free writing software in this economy.

    • Hunbbel Meer profile imageAUTHOR

      Syed Hunbbel Meer 

      8 years ago from Karachi, Pakistan.

      @Cpa: I am glad that you liked it :)

    • cpa profile image


      8 years ago from Brooklyn, NY

      Great hub - gets my thumbs up !

    • Hunbbel Meer profile imageAUTHOR

      Syed Hunbbel Meer 

      8 years ago from Karachi, Pakistan.

      @Aspiring Writer29: You are welcome. The typewriter sound is still a mystery to me, it is really unexplainable :P

      And welcome to hubpages and best of luck for your writing future, I wish you tons of success. If you use to above software and find it useful and according to the review, kindly feel free to post your comments after that :)

    • profile image

      Aspiring Writer29 

      8 years ago

      Hunbbel Meer, Thank you immensely for the information about this amazing software! I would never have known it existed if not for reading about it on your hub. I am just beginning to explore the possibility of writing for profit, and just as you said in "3. Typewriter Sound", I too feel inexplicably much more creative when hearing the clicking of the "typewriter" keys as I type. Somehow, that sound just seems to inspire me to write. I don't understand why it does, but I am grateful for it nonetheless. Bless you for choosing to review and share it! :)

    • Hunbbel Meer profile imageAUTHOR

      Syed Hunbbel Meer 

      8 years ago from Karachi, Pakistan.

      @Sueswan: Yes. To me it proved as a competitive alternate to Microsoft word. I even wrote 'this article' on the same software. It is so easy to write using this. :)

    • profile image


      8 years ago

      Sounds like a great alternative to word. Voted up and interesting.

    • Hunbbel Meer profile imageAUTHOR

      Syed Hunbbel Meer 

      8 years ago from Karachi, Pakistan.

      @Todd Lucas: I will check it out, thanks for sharing the info :)

    • profile image

      Todd Lucas 

      8 years ago

      Check out Writemonkey ( ... that's where all of us original Q10 and Darkroom users went after Q10 had stopped being supported for years. Does everything Q10 does but better (generally, though Q10 is still competitive with the rest of this rapidly growing niche of applications). Adds a lot of functionality that I use pretty much all day, every day, though none of it needs to be in your face if you just want a more modern version of Q10. Only thing its missing from Q10 are the 4 nameable partial word counts, though it does allow for one partial without label (and my favorite nitpick its missing is Q10's "save after x# of paragraphs"; I used to have that set to 1 so basically every time you hit Enter, it saved for you).

      I could write a manual on Writemonkey's functionality and possible uses for it all, but I'm sure you guys are at least as clever as I am, so I'll leave you to it.


    • Hunbbel Meer profile imageAUTHOR

      Syed Hunbbel Meer 

      8 years ago from Karachi, Pakistan.

      @sofs: I am glad that you liked it. Now if you ever feel a need of a distraction free writing software, you know where to go :)

    • sofs profile image


      8 years ago

      Great information here Hunbbel, I am so fond of Google docs now that I am currently not looking at other stuff. But this sounds great!!

    • Hunbbel Meer profile imageAUTHOR

      Syed Hunbbel Meer 

      8 years ago from Karachi, Pakistan.

      @homesteadbound: Yeah I spent quite a lot of time reviewing this software :) Even the 'publishing the hub' took a lot of time.

      I am really glad that you liked the hub :)

    • Hunbbel Meer profile imageAUTHOR

      Syed Hunbbel Meer 

      8 years ago from Karachi, Pakistan.

      @Paradise7: MS Word is okay, many people got no problem with that. Though the thing is when you write something directly from your heart, like a story, novel, book, poetry; I guess one does not want any distraction and when I work on Q10, words come a lot easier to me as compared to while using MS Word. It is only a point of tastes, preferences and needs under different circumstances.

      Thanks for stopping by :)

    • homesteadbound profile image

      Cindy Murdoch 

      8 years ago from Texas

      Looks like you really did your homework. A very nice hub.

    • Paradise7 profile image


      8 years ago from Upstate New York

      I'm happy with Word but I do notice various people are looking for alternatives, so this is useful to many.


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