By the request of community, a built-in Plugins Admin is available in Notepad++ v.7.6. Plugins Admin shows the list of available plugins, allows users to install new plugins and to update/remove installed plugins.
Any plugin is welcome to join in the list, which is also an open source project hosted in the GitHub: https://github.com/notepad-plus-plus/nppPluginList/
Test your plugins' installation/update locally
For testing your plugin for listing, installation, removal and update under Plugin Admin, you need Notepad++ binary in debug mode 32-bit or 64-bit, the latest version of wingup 32-bit or 64-bit and nppPluginList.json (you should rename it from pl.x64.json or pl.x86.json, according your plugin's architecture). Replace notepad++.exe and GUP.exe of your Notepad++ installation by downloaded ones, copy pl.x64.json or pl.x86.json to %PROGRAMDATA%\Notepad++\plugins\Config\nppPluginList.json (or <NPP_INST_DIR>\plugins\Config\nppPluginList.json - see New Plugins Home), then you're all set - the menu item "Plugin Admin" will be under menu "Plugin" of your debug mode notepad++.exe. Launch this command will launch the Plugin Admin dialog and the rest should be intuitive.
Rules for adding your plugins into list
- Architecture: your 32-bits plugin should be added to pl.x86.json, 64-bits plugin should be added to pl.x64.json.
- Unicity: the value of "folder-name" of your plugin should be unique in the list. it means if there's already another same name plugin in the list, you have to rename your plugin's folder-name (and your plugin). Keep in mind that your plugin binary name (w/o the extension .dll) should be always the same as the folder-name, otherwise your plugins won't be loaded.
- Security: the value of "id" is plugin package's (zip file) finger print in SHA-256. This id is checked with the downloaded dll to avoid MITM. You can use Notepad++ to get your plugin's SHA-256 hash (Menu: Tools->SHA-256>Generate from files...) or some online sha256 generators.
- Update info: the value of "version" is exact the version of your plugin binary version which you want to be deployed. This version will compare with installed plugin's version to decide if update should be applied. Please check Microsoft's document about binary version for setting the version correctly onto your DLL.
- Download location: the value of "repository" is the URL where Plugin Admin can download the plugin to install/update it.
- Packaging: Only zip package is supported. Your plugin (DLL) should have the same name as the "folder-name" and the plugin DLL file should be placed at the root level of the ZIP file. Otherwise Plugin Admin won't install it. Any additionals files (dll or data) can be placed at the root level or in an arbitrary subfolder.
Do your PR to join plugin list
Once your test has been done, and everything is ok, you can fork and do your PR on: https://github.com/notepad-plus-plus/nppPluginList/. Only the json part you should modify. The json file will be built into the a binary (nppPluginList.dll), which will be signed (for thes sake of security) and be included in the official distribution.
Questions & support
Ask your questions here: https://notepad-plus-plus.org/community/topic/16789/support-for-plugins-admin-npppluginlist-round-2