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This is mostly for historical interest. Notes support is in JOSM's core in the meantime. See notes dialog.


This plugin allows for interacting with OpenStreetMap Notes from within JOSM. You can view, add comments and close, that is, mark as Done, existing notes as well as create new ones. Currently, there is no way to delete a Note or to edit the original text after its creation. When you mark a Note as Done, it will disappear after a period of time.


The search feature deserves some explanation. It allows you to execute a search query against the notes API. This uses a postgresql fulltext search to match any text in the notes or any comments added to the note.

Executing a search will automatically place the plugin into offline mode. If this didn't happen, the search results would get replaced with a bbox query the next time you pan or zoom the map. In order to execute another search you will need to go back online first.

The search can be affected by two settings:

  • Maximum results - Limits the number of results returned. Can be any number between 1 and 10,000. Defaults to 1,000.
  • Days closed - The number of days a note must be closed before it is excluded from the search. A value of 7 would return notes closed up to one week ago. Default is 0 which returns only open notes. A value of -1 will return all notes, no matter how long they have been closed for.

These settings can be changed in the JOSM advanced preferences dialog. They are represented by the following two keys: and


Search for "notes" in the JOSM plugin preferences panel. Alternatively you can download the notes.jar file and place it in the .josm/plugins/ directory and then activate it through the plugin preferences panel.
Once installed the Notes icon will appear in the Edit Toolbar at the left side of the JOSM window. Clicking on it will open the Notes Dialog box in the Windows area. You may also invoke Notes from JOSM's Windows menu or by typing Alt+Shift+B.

JOSM versions and authentication

If you use basic authentication, everything should work.

If you use OAuth, some extra steps may be required. The notes feature introduced a new OAuth permission which older versions of JOSM do not know about. The first thing to do is make sure you are running a current version of JOSM. The minimum version needed is build 6076. You will also need to generate a new OAuth token using the new JOSM version. This is done in the connection preferences via the "New Access Token" button.


This plugin was started as a copy of the OpenStreetBugs plugin. It has been developed by Ian Dees and Toby Murray.

The code is available on GitHub at

There was work going on to implement the notes support into the core of JOSM, so the installation of a plugin is no longer required. Notes dialog available in JOSM's core.