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Forge for SwordSearcher

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Christian authors and publishers: make your text available in SwordSearcher format!

Forge is a free external module build tool for SwordSearcher. It is designed for advanced users and publishers who need to be able to import a large amount of text into a SwordSearcher module without using SwordSearcher's internal user editor. Please read the information below before using Forge.

  • Most SwordSearcher users should not use Forge. Instead, use the integrated user module features. Forge is highly technical and is meant for building large modules from pre-existing source material.
Setup File: SSForge-Setup.exe
Size: 7.64 MB
OS: Windows

Screen shot of Forge for SwordSearcherWhat Forge Does:

Forge takes a source text file containing specially formatted text and builds SwordSearcher commentary, book, or Bible modules. Forge can compile read-only or user-editable modules.

  • Read-only modules (default): these cannot be edited from within SwordSearcher. SwordSearcher will not allow read-only modules to be exported to text files.
  • User modules: these can be edited as any user-created resource in SwordSearcher. SwordSearcher allows user modules to be exported to text files. (The files exported by SwordSearcher can subsequently be compiled with Forge, if desired.)

Do you need Forge?

Before using Forge, try using SwordSearcher's built-in user module editing tools. You can create commentaries and books right inside SwordSearcher with a WYSIWYG editor. Most users will not need Forge. Even if you have text outside of SwordSearcher, you may find that just copy-and-pasting into a user module in SwordSearcher works just fine.

However, if you have a working knowledge of HTML code and a handy plain-text editor or some scripting skills, Forge will build your modules in a flash.

Forge is the only way to build Bible modules for SwordSearcher.


  • You must have a working installation of SwordSearcher to test your modules.
  • You must have knowledge of basic HTML and the ability to create and edit the source files. Creating the source data files for Forge to compile usually requires some amount of pre-processing, so some basic scripting skill is also helpful.

More information:

  • Forge only builds modules for SwordSearcher 5 and later. It cannot build modules for older versions of SwordSearcher.
  • If your text includes any non-ASCII characters, the module will require SwordSearcher 6 or later to be properly rendered.
  • When in doubt, save your text files as UTF-8 with BOM or UTF-16.
  • Forge is provided AS IS with no promise of support. Publishers interested in publishing material in SwordSearcher format are free to use Forge to do so. However, if you need assistance in creating your modules, please consider contacting Brandon Staggs for professional support and/or module compilation work.
  • If you have created a module which you wish to share with other SwordSearcher users, the SwordSearcher User Forum is a good place to announce it.
  • There are no licensing fees to use Forge to publish your text in SwordSearcher format!

Revision History:


  • Fixed crashing if Bible input text had unbalanced footnote tags.
  • Other minor bug fixes.


  • Significant speed improvements for large commentaries and books.
  • Support books with more than 65,535 entries. Note: if your book module has this many entries, the module file will only be readable by SwordSearcher 8.0 or later.
  • Built with SwordSearcher 8 core support code. Some improvements to verse reference recognition and fixes/improvements to word parsing for indexing.


  • Automatically scrub HTML from Bible verse input and print a warning. It has never been supported for Bible verse input and causes undesirable behavior. Please see the documentation under Bible Text File Format for details.


  • Minor update to verse reference parser to allow for longer strings of chapter:verse references after a book.


  • Updated verse reference parser and build code with SwordSearcher 7.2 core.
  • Documented ; FONT header option.
  • Added ; HEBREW and ; HEBREWOT Bible header options (see documentation for details).
  • Fixed Forge crash when SwordSearcher is open and Forge tries to rebuild an open module.
  • Updated crash bug reporting system to use web server instead of email.
  • Prevent book modules with more than 65,534 entries from being built (they can’t be loaded by SwordSearcher at this time).
  • Improved output of “Report Empty Verses” Bible build option.
  • Added option to control Roman numeral parsing in automatic verse reference tagging.
  • Various bug fixes.


  • Added additional warnings when compiling Bible modules with entries that appear to match the same verses.
  • Fixed a crash condition with extremely long references.
  • Minor improvements to verse reference recognition.


  • Added "Report Empty Verses" option for Bible module compiling. Lists all verses with no text after compile.


  • Implemented complete Unicode support, which requires SwordSearcher 6.0 or later. If your source file contains a Unicode Byte Order Mark (BOM) at the beginning of the file, the text will be correctly interpreted as Unicode text. Most text editors, as well as the user module export function for SwordSearcher 6, will write the BOM automatically.
  • Removed obsolete "UTF-8 Encoding" option for Bible modules.  This is no longer necessary.
  • Module build code updated with SwordSearcher 6 code base.
  • Improvements to verse reference recognition.


  • Added support for more book abbreviations.
  • Added support for verse references in the form of “Deut. xx:1” etc.
  • Added Book Abbreviation Exclusion option and customizable list.


  • Fixed bug that would cause incorrect indexing in Bible modules under certain circumstances.


  • Added automatic verse linking to Forge. It is no longer necessary to tag verse references in Forge source files. The "Automatically link verse references" option, when checked, will find verse links in the source text and automatically link and index them for SwordSearcher. (If you do not wish to use Forge's automatic verse linking feature, you can un-check this option and use <scripref> tags in the source as described in the Forge user manual.)


  • Fixed parsing error in Bible compilation code which ignored specified verse position in source text.


  • Initial public release.
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Take the helmet of Salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. —Eph 6:17 (KJV)