Free Spell Checker Software

Free spell checking tools for Windows, Mac OS X, Linux, etc


Free Spell Checkers

Standalone spell checkers are useful if you use programs that do not have built-in spell checking facilities. Some of these tools integrate into the operating system, allowing you to check your spelling using certain hotkeys or a right click menu or the like. Others automatically check the spelling of words as you type and alert you in some way. Still other tools are command line tools that support the spell-checking of certain types of files.

Incidentally, before you rush out to get a spell checker, remember that many wordprocessors have spell-checking built in, including the free software listed on the Free Wordprocessors and Office Suites page. In other words, if your plan is to use a spell checker from within a word processor, chances are that you don't need it.

Note that if you are looking for spell check programming libraries so that you can integrate spell-checking into your programs, please see the Free Spell Checker Libraries, Source Code, Controls, Components page instead.

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Free Spell Checking Tools

TinySpell (Windows)

TinySpell checks your spelling as you type, even in programs that do not have spell checkers. It is able to do on-the-fly spell checking, where if it will alert you if it detects a misspelled word. You can also copy text to the clipboard for Tiny Spell to check. Whenever there is any error, you will be able to activate its pop-up window to get a list of suggested spellings.

Excalibur - The LaTeX-Aware Spelling Checker (Mac OS X)

Excalibur is an open source Macintosh spell-checker that is able to check LaTeX documents as well as plain text documents. It is released under the GNU General Public License.

IESpell - Spell Checker for Internet Explorer (Windows)

If you use Internet Explorer (IE), and want your spelling checked whenever you enter text into the text boxes of forms you encounter, this spelling checker integrates with the browser and enables you to check the English spelling of your words. (Note that if you use the Opera browser, you can simply use Aspell (see elsewhere on this page). This program is free only for personal use.

GNU Aspell (Windows, Linux, etc)

The well-known GNU Aspell is available for Windows, Linux and probably many other operating systems as well (although there may not be any ready-to-use executables). This is a command line program, which means that you need to run it in a command prompt / shell.

Ispell (Linux, Unix-type systems, MS-DOS, Windows)

Ispell is a command line program for Linux, other Unix-type systems like the various BSDs, and even MS-DOS and Windows. You will need to know how to compile a program to use it.

FreeSpell (Windows)

This is a front-end to GNU Aspell that checks spelling of words copied to the clipboard.

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