'Load langs.xml failed!' Message When Opening Notepad++

Unless you actually like the plain, old, boring Notepad (which basically hasn’t changed since 1985) – then you’re probably already aware of a great replacement for it, called Notepad++.  To put it short, it’s an amazing little text editor with a feature as long as my arm, including syntax highlighting for virtually every scripting language you can think of.  It also has integration into Windows Explorer, so it’s easy to right-click and edit files which are not associated directly to Notepad++.

For years, it has never let me down, and while it still continues to serve faithfully, this week the following message started to appear every time I opened it on my 64bit Windows 7 workstation:

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Load langs.xml failed!

That obviously also means that I lost my syntax highlighting.  I could get it back, but I had to manually select the type of file I was editing.  Normally this is automatic.

Somehow, the langs.xml had errors in it. Perhaps while exploring various Notepad++ options I accidentally made unintended changes to it.  I don’t know, but when I went to the Notepad++ installation directory, the langs.xml file had a file size of 0 bytes.

So while in the installation folder for Notepad++ I renamed langs.xml to langs.xml.bad. Then, in that same folder, I copied langs.model.xml, and renamed the copy to langs.xml.

This fixed this problem for me, hopefully it will work for you as well. You may want to then compare the langs.xml to langs.xml.bad and see if there is anything legitimate that you want back – but in my case It was fairly obvious that the langs.xml file was pretty useless in it’s 0 bytes state.