How to use Hackpad

Please play with these features in the Sandbox...

If you have any questions not covered here, try the Hackpad FAQ

Introductory Tutorial: Getting started with Hackpad (3 mins)

Hackpad 101

A Pad is an editable content page. 

A Collection is a label you can use with your team to stay organized. Click the name of any collection to see a full list of that Collection’s Pads. 

A Workspace is a place where you and your teammates can share knowledge and collaborate. 

A Workspace Member has access to all Pads in a workspace set to "all workspace users". You can add a Member to a workspace by asking an Admin to use the "Manage this Workspace" link found on your homepage. 

A Pad Guest is invited from the right side of any Pad. If this person has not been invited to join a Private site as a Member, they will have access only to this single Pad. If they have been invited to a Public Site, they will have read and write access to all of a Workspace’s Pads, just like any member of the public. 


Public Workspaces are free for an unlimited number of collaborators. Users can create as many public workspaces as they’d like, free of charge. 

Private Workspaces are free for up to 5 members, and then cost $2/user/month. 


  • Seeing Who Wrote What 
  • Change your Pad’s Privacy Setting 
  • Click the green icon to the left of the Pad title to select your desired privacy setting. 

  • Uninviting People 
  • Moderation Mode  
  • Creating new pads

  • ’+’ New Pad Button 
  • From your existing Pad
  • From Selected Text
  • From your Email   
  • From your browser address bar  
  • History

    From here, you can revert to previous versions of the Pad and track changes over time. 

    Organizing your content


  • Type # followed by a space to create a Heading 1, 
  • Type ## followed by a space for a Heading 2, and 
  • Type ### followed by a space for a Heading 3. 
  • Table of Contents





    Just paste the URL to embed rich media in a pad. (No more pesky embed codes!)

    We support embeds of: 

    Click here for a full list of supported rich media or see Hackpad Rich Media Demo for examples. 

    You can also drag-and-drop image files directly onto a Pad to embed them.

    Formatting Shortcuts

  • Undo/Redo
  • Indent/Unindent Keybinding
  • Highlighting
  • You can highlight Hackpad text by selecting it and then hitting Command+E. (in Windows, hit Ctrl+Shift+E)

    Currently we only support a yellow color :)

    Inline Code and Code Syntax Highlighting

    Superscript / Subscript 

    Superscript x2: Select text then:

    Subscript x2: Select text then:

    LaTeX Support 

    Just type double-dollar sign then your LaTeX then another double-dollar sign to render the inner LaTeX. You can click on the latex to get back to the code version to make changes and then type the trailing dollar sign again to re-render.

    Code Syntax Highlighting

    Hackpad Code Syntax Highlighting and Monospace

    Title a Pad to end in a common code extension like Hello.html, Hello.js, Hello.sql, etc and see it highlighted correctly for that language. Inline code is also supported. Four spaces will turn on monospace.

    Working offline

    Dropbox Integration

    Offline Sync to Dropbox 

    You can enable Dropbox sync from your Account Settings Page. This will store an offline copy of all the Hackpads you follow into a ’hackpad’ folder in your Dropbox.

    Link to Dropbox Files 

    Follow the directions above to enable Dropbox Sync with your Hackpad account. 

    Now when you type ’@’ to link, it’ll also search your Dropbox by filename. Hitting ’enter’ on a Dropbox file in the popup menu inserts a sharing URL for your file.

    You can also do this by clicking the plus "+" button in the edit bar, followed by the Dropbox button, which will launch a modal dialog to browse the contents of your Dropbox. 

    Export - Downloading your Pads

    Download all Pads you’ve authored

    It’s easy to download all of the Pads you’ve created on your Workspace. Simply navigate to your profile page (found at or for Workspaces) and select the preferred file type in the "Download Pads" dropdown. 

    Your Pads will be batched together and a download link will be emailed to you. 

    Download a single Pad

    You can easily download a single Pad using your browser’s address bar. Check out how in this tutorial.


    You can publish Pads online by setting the "open to" setting to "open to everyone (public)," or by embedding the Pad directly into your website or blog. 

    To print a Pad, or save it as PDF, click the gear icon and then "Print" . Details on how to publish from Hackpad here.