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fighting for TYPO free code

vim tips

Some very fine vim tips

Some excellent vim tips from David Rayner (zzapper).

" searching
/joe/e                      : cursor set to End of match
/joe/e+1                    : cursor set to End of match plus 1
/joe/s-2                    : cursor set to Start of match minus 2
/^joe.*fred.*bill/          : normal
/^[A-J]\+/                  : search for lines beginning with one or more A-J
/begin\_.*end               : search over possible multiple lines
/fred\_s*joe/i              : any whitespace including newline
/fred\|joe                  : Search for FRED OR JOE
/.*fred\&.*joe              : Search for FRED AND JOE in any ORDER!
/\<fred\>/i                 : search for fred but not alfred or frederick
/\<\d\d\d\d\>               : Search for exactly 4 digit numbers
/\D\d\d\d\d\D               : Search for exactly 4 digit numbers
/\<\d\{4}\>                 : same thing
/\([^0-9]\|^\)%.*%          : Search for absence of a digit or beginning of line
" finding empty lines
/^\n\{3}                    : find 3 empty lines
" using rexexp memory in a search
" Repeating the Regexp (rather than what the Regexp finds)
" visual searching
:vmap // y/<C-R>"<CR>       : search for visually highlighted text
:vmap <silent> //    y/<C-R>=escape(@", '\\/.*$^~[]')<CR><CR> : with spec chars
" \zs and \ze regex delimiters :h /\zs
/<\zs[^>]*\ze>              : search for tag contents, ignoring chevrons
" zero-width :h /\@=
/<\@<=[^>]*>\@=             : search for tag contents, ignoring chevrons
/<\@<=\_[^>]*>\@=           : search for tags across possible multiple lines
" searching over multiple lines \_ means including newline
/<!--\_p\{-}-->                   : search for multiple line comments
/fred\_s*joe/i                    : any whitespace including newline
/bugs\(\_.\)*bunny                : bugs followed by bunny anywhere in file
:h \_                             : help
" search for declaration of subroutine/function under cursor
:nmap gx yiw/^\(sub\<bar>function\)\s\+<C-R>"<CR>
" multiple file search
:bufdo /searchstr/                : use :rewind to recommence search
" multiple file search better but cheating
:bufdo %s/searchstr/&/gic   : say n and then a to stop
" How to search for a URL without backslashing
?https://www.vim.org/        : search BACKWARDS!!! clever huh!
" Specify what you are NOT searching for (vowels)
/\c\v([^aeiou]&\a){4}       : search for 4 consecutive consonants
:%s/fred/joe/igc            : general substitute command
:%s/\r//g                   : Delete DOS returns ^M
" Is your Text File jumbled onto one line? use following
:%s/\r/\r/g                 : Turn DOS returns ^M into real returns
:%s=  *$==                  : delete end of line blanks
:%s= \+$==                  : Same thing
:%s#\s*\r\?$##              : Clean both trailing spaces AND DOS returns
:%s#\s*\r*$##               : same thing
" deleting empty lines
:%s/^\n\{3}//               : delete blocks of 3 empty lines
:%s/^\n\+/\r/               : compressing empty lines
%s#<[^>]\+>##g              : delete html tags, leave text
:'a,'bg/fred/s/dick/joe/igc : VERY USEFUL
" duplicating columns
:%s= [^ ]\+$=&&=            : duplicate end column
:%s= \f\+$=&&=              : same thing
:%s= \S\+$=&&               : usually the same
" memory
:s/\(.*\):\(.*\)/\2 : \1/   : reverse fields separated by :
:%s/^\(.*\)\n\1$/\1/        : delete duplicate lines
" non-greedy matching \{-}
:%s/^.\{-}pdf/new.pdf/      : delete to 1st pdf only
" use of optional atom \?
:%s#\<[zy]\?tbl_[a-z_]\+\>#\L&#gc : lowercase with optional leading characters
" over possibly many lines
:%s/<!--\_.\{-}-->//        : delete possibly multi-line comments
:help /\{-}                 : help non-greedy
" substitute using a register
:s/fred/<c-r>a/g            : sub "fred" with contents of register "a"
:s/fred/\[email protected]/g              : better alternative as register not displayed
" multiple commands on one line
:%s/\f\+\.gif\>/\r&\r/g | v/\.gif$/d | %s/gif/jpg/
:%s/a/but/gie|:update|:next : then use @: to repeat
" ORing
:%s/suck\|buck/loopy/gc     : ORing (must break pipe)
" Calling a VIM function
:s/__date__/\=strftime("%c")/ : insert datestring
" Working with Columns sub any str1 in col3
" Swapping first & last column (4 columns)
" filter all form elements into paste register
:redir @*|sil exec 'g#<\(input\|select\|textarea\|/\=form\)\>#p'|redir END
:nmap ,z :redir @*<Bar>sil exec '[email protected]<\(input\<Bar>select\<Bar>textarea\<Bar>/\=form\)\>@p'<Bar>redir END<CR>
" decrement numbers by 3
" increment numbers by 6 on certain lines only
" better
:h /\zs
" increment only numbers gg\d\d  by 6 (another way)
:h zero-width
" rename a string with an incrementing number
:let i=10 | 'a,'bg/Abc/s/yy/\=i/ |let i=i+1 # convert yy to 10,11,12 etc
" as above but more precise
:let i=10 | 'a,'bg/Abc/s/xx\zsyy\ze/\=i/ |let i=i+1 # convert xxyy to xx11,xx12,xx13
" find replacement text, put in memory, then use \zs to simplify substitute
" Pull word under cursor into LHS of a substitute
:nmap <leader>z :%s#\<<c-r>=expand("<cword>")<cr>\>#
" Pull Visually Highlighted text into LHS of a substitute
:vmap <leader>z :<C-U>%s/\<<c-r>*\>/
" all following performing similar task, substitute within substitution
" Multiple single character substitution in a portion of line only
:%s,\(all/.*\)\@<=/,_,g     : replace all / with _ AFTER "all/"
" Same thing
:s#all/\zs.*#\=substitute(submatch(0), '/', '_', 'g')#
" Substitute by splitting line, then re-joining
" Substitute inside substitute
:%s/.*/\='cp '.submatch(0).' all/'.substitute(submatch(0),'/','_','g')/
" global command display 
:g/gladiolli/#              : display with line numbers (YOU WANT THIS!)
:g/fred.*joe.*dick/         : display all lines fred,joe & dick
:g/\<fred\>/                : display all lines fred but not freddy
:g/^\s*$/d                  : delete all blank lines
:g!/^dd/d                   : delete lines not containing string
:v/^dd/d                    : delete lines not containing string
:g/fred/,/joe/d             : not line based (very powerfull)
:g/-------/.-10,.d          : Delete string & 10 previous lines
:g/{/ ,/}/- s/\n\+/\r/g     : Delete empty lines but only between {...}
:v/\S/d                     : Delete empty lines (both types)
:v/./,/./-j                 : compress empty lines
:g/^$/,/./-j                : compress empty lines
:g/<input\|<form/p          : ORing
:g/^/put_                   : double space file (pu = put)
:g/^/m0                     : Reverse file (m = move)
:'a,'bg/^/m'b               : Reverse a section a to b
:g/^/t.                     : duplicate every line
:g/fred/t$                  : copy lines matching fred to EOF
:g/stage/t'a                : copy lines matching stage to marker a
:g/\(^I[^^I]*\)\{80}/d      : delete all lines containing at least 80 tabs
" perform a substitute on every other line
:g/^/ if line('.')%2|s/^/zz / 
" match all lines containing "somestr" between markers a & b
" copy after line containing "otherstr"
:'a,'bg/somestr/co/otherstr/ : co(py) or mo(ve)
" as above but also do a substitution
:%norm jdd                  : delete every other line
" incrementing numbers (type <c-a> as 5 characters)
:.,$g/^\d/exe "norm! \<c-a>": increment numbers
:'a,'bg/\d\+/norm! ^A       : increment numbers
" storing glob results (note must use APPEND) you need to empty reg a first with qaq. 
"save results to a register/paste buffer
:g/fred/y A                 : append all lines fred to register a
:g/fred/y A | :let @*[email protected]    : put into paste buffer
:let @a=''|g/Barratt/y A |:let @*[email protected]
:'a,'b g/^Error/ . w >> errors.txt
" duplicate every line in a file wrap a print '' around each duplicate
:g/./yank|put|-1s/'/"/g|s/.*/Print '&'/
" replace string with contents of a file, -d deletes the "mark"
:g/^MARK$/r tmp.ex | -d
" display prettily
:g/<pattern>/z#.5           : display with context
:g/<pattern>/z#.5|echo "=========="  : display beautifully
" Combining g// with normal mode commands
:g/|/norm 2f|r*                      : replace 2nd | with a star
"send output of previous global command to a new window
:nmap <F3>  :redir @a<CR>:g//<CR>:redir END<CR>:new<CR>:put! a<CR><CR>
" Global combined with substitute (power editing)
:'a,'bg/fred/s/joe/susan/gic :  can use memory to extend matching
:g/fred/,/joe/s/fred/joe/gic :  non-line based (ultra)
" Find fred before beginning search for joe
" create a new file for each line of file eg 1.txt,2.txt,3,txt etc
:g/^/exe ".w ".line(".").".txt"
" Absolutely essential
* # g* g#           : find word under cursor (<cword>) (forwards/backwards)
%                   : match brackets {}[]()
.                   : repeat last modification 
@:                  : repeat last : command (then @@)
matchit.vim         : % now matches tags <tr><td><script> <?php etc
<C-N><C-P>          : word completion in insert mode
<C-X><C-L>          : Line complete SUPER USEFUL
/<C-R><C-W>         : Pull <cword> onto search/command line
/<C-R><C-A>         : Pull <CWORD> onto search/command line
:set ignorecase     : you nearly always want this
:syntax on          : colour syntax in Perl,HTML,PHP etc
:h regexp<C-D>      : type control-D and get a list all help topics containing
                      regexp (plus use TAB to Step thru list)
:nmap ,s :source $VIM/_vimrc
:nmap ,v :e $VIM/_vimrc
#VISUAL MODE (easy to add other HTML Tags)
:vmap sb "zdi<b><C-R>z</b><ESC>  : wrap <b></b> around VISUALLY selected Text
:vmap st "zdi<?= <C-R>z ?><ESC>  : wrap <?=   ?> around VISUALLY selected Text
" Exploring
:Exp(lore)                      : file explorer note capital Ex
:Sex(plore)                     : file explorer in split window
:ls                             : list of buffers
:cd ..                          : move to parent directory
:args                           : list of files
:lcd %:p:h                      : change to directory of current file
:autocmd BufEnter * lcd %:p:h   : change to directory of current file automatically (put in _vimrc)
" Buffer Explorer (Top Ten Vim Script)
" needs bufexplorer.vim  https://www.vim.org/script.php?script_id=42
\be                             : buffer explorer list of buffers
\bs                             : buffer explorer (split window)
" Changing Case
guu                             : lowercase line
gUU                             : uppercase line
Vu                              : lowercase line
VU                              : uppercase line
g~~                             : flip case line
vEU                             : Upper Case Word
vE~                             : Flip Case Word
ggguG                           : lowercase entire file
" Titlise Visually Selected Text (map for .vimrc)
vmap ,c :s/\<\(.\)\(\k*\)\>/\u\1\L\2/g<CR>
" Uppercase first letter of sentences
gf                              : open file name under cursor (SUPER)
:nnoremap gF :view <cfile><cr>  : open file under cursor, create if necessary
ga                              : display hex,ascii value of char under cursor
ggVGg?                          : rot13 whole file
ggg?G                           : rot13 whole file (quicker for large file)
:8 | normal VGg?                : rot13 from line 8
:normal 10GVGg?                 : rot13 from line 8
<C-A>,<C-X>                     : increment,decrement number under cursor
                                  win32 users must remap CNTRL-A
<C-R>=5*5                       : insert 25 into text (mini-calculator)
" Makes all other tips superfluous
:h 42            : also https://www.google.com/search?q=42
:h holy-grail
" Markers & moving about
'.               : jump to last modification line (SUPER)
`.               : jump to exact spot in last modification line
g;               : cycle thru recent changes (oldest first) (new in vim6.3)
g,               : reverse direction (new in vim6.3)
:h changelist    : help for above
<C-O>            : retrace your movements in file (starting from most recent)
<C-I>            : retrace your movements in file (reverse direction)
:ju(mps)         : list of your movements
:help jump-motions
:history         : list of all your commands
:his c           : commandline history
:his s           : search history
q/               : Search history Window (puts you in full edit mode)
q:               : commandline history Window (puts you in full edit mode)
:<C-F>           : history Window
" Abbreviations & maps
:map   <f7>   :'a,'bw! c:/aaa/x
:map   <f8>   :r c:/aaa/x
:map   <f11>  :.w! c:/aaa/xr<CR>
:map   <f12>  :r c:/aaa/xr<CR>
:ab php          : list of abbreviations beginning php
:map ,           : list of maps beginning ,
" allow use of F10 for mapping (win32)
set wak=no       : :h winaltkeys
" For use in Maps
<CR>             : carriage Return for maps
<ESC>            : Escape
<LEADER>         : normally \
<BAR>            : | pipe
<BACKSPACE>      : backspace
<SILENT>         : No hanging shell window
#display RGB colour under the cursor eg #445588
:nmap <leader>c :hi Normal guibg=#<c-r>=expand("<cword>")<cr><cr>
map <f2> /price only\\|versus/ :in a map need to backslash the \
" Simple PHP debugging display all variables yanked into register a
iab phpdb exit("<hr>Debug <C-R>a  ");
" Using a register as a map (preload registers in .vimrc)
:let @m=":'a,'bs/"
:let @s=":%!sort -u"
" List your Registers
:reg             : display contents of all registers
:reg a           : display content of individual registers
"1p....          : retrieve numeric registers one by one
:let @y='[email protected]"'   : pre-loading registers (put in .vimrc)
qqq              : empty register "q"
" Useful tricks
"[email protected]           : execute "Vim command" in a text file
[email protected]"             : same thing using unnamed register
[email protected]              : execute command JUST typed in
" Get output from other commands (requires external programs)
:r!ls.exe        : reads in output of ls
!!date           : same thing (but replaces/filters current line)
" Sorting with external sort
:%!sort -u       : use an external program to filter content
:'a,'b!sort -u   : use an external program to filter content
!1} sort -u      : sorts paragraph (note normal mode!!)
:g/^$/;,/^$/-1!sort : Sort each block (note the crucial ;)
" Multiple Files Management (Essential)
:bn              : goto next buffer
:bp              : goto previous buffer
:wn              : save file and move to next (super)
:wp              : save file and move to previous
:bd              : remove file from buffer list (super)
:bun             : Buffer unload (remove window but not from list)
:badd file.c     : file from buffer list
:b 3             : go to buffer 3
:b main          : go to buffer with main in name eg main.c (ultra)
:sav php.html    : Save current file as php.html and "move" to php.html
:sav! %<.bak     : Save Current file to alternative extension (old way)
:sav! %:r.cfm    : Save Current file to alternative extension
:sav %:s/fred/joe/           : do a substitute on file name
:sav %:s/fred/joe/:r.bak2    : do a substitute on file name & ext.
:!mv % %:r.bak   : rename current file (DOS use Rename or DEL)
:e!              : return to unmodified file
:w c:/aaa/%      : save file elsewhere
:e #             : edit alternative file (also cntrl-^)
:rew             : return to beginning of edited files list (:args)
:brew            : buffer rewind
:sp fred.txt     : open fred.txt into a split
:sball,:sb       : Split all buffers (super)
:scrollbind      : in each split window
:map   <F5> :ls<CR>:e # : Pressing F5 lists all buffer, just type number
:set hidden      : Allows to change buffer w/o saving current buffer
" Quick jumping between splits
map <C-J> <C-W>j<C-W>_
map <C-K> <C-W>k<C-W>_
" Recording (BEST TIP of ALL)
qq  # record to q
your complex series of commands
q   # end recording
@q to execute
@@ to Repeat
[email protected]@ to Repeat 5 times
" editing a register/recording
"qp                               :display contents of register q (normal mode)
<ctrl-R>q                         :display contents of register q (insert mode)
" you can now see recording contents, edit as required
"qdd                              :put changed contacts back into q
@q                                :execute recording/register q
" Operating a Recording on a Visual BLOCK
1) define recording/register
qq:s/ to/ from/g^Mq
2) Define Visual BLOCK
3) hit : and the following appears
4)Complete as follows
:'<,'>norm @q
"combining a recording with a map (to end up in command mode)
nnoremap ] @q:w!<bar>bd
" Visual is the newest and usually the most intuitive editing mode
" Visual basics
v                               : enter visual mode
V                               : visual mode whole line
<C-V>                           : enter VISUAL BLOCK mode
gv                              : reselect last visual area (ultra)
o                               : navigate visual area
"*y                             : yank visual area into paste buffer
V%                              : visualise what you match
V}J                             : Join Visual block (great)
V}gJ                            : Join Visual block w/o adding spaces
" Delete first 2 characters of 10 successive lines
" how to copy a set of columns using VISUAL BLOCK
" visual block (AKA columnwise selection) (NOT BY ordinary v command)
<C-V> then select "column(s)" with motion commands (win32 <C-Q>)
then c,d,y,r etc
" how to overwrite a visual-block of text with another such block
Pick the first block: ctrl-v move "ay
Pick the second block: ctrl-v move c ctrl-o "aP <esc>
" _vimrc essentials
:set incsearch : jumps to search word as you type (annoying but excellent)
:set wildignore=*.o,*.obj,*.bak,*.exe : tab complete now ignores these
:set shiftwidth=3                     : for shift/tabbing
:set vb t_vb=".                       : set silent (no beep)
:set browsedir=buffer                 : Maki GUI File Open use current directory
" launching Win IE
:nmap ,f :update<CR>:silent !start c:\progra~1\intern~1\iexplore.exe file://%:p<CR>
:nmap ,i :update<CR>: !start c:\progra~1\intern~1\iexplore.exe <cWORD><CR>
" FTPing from VIM
cmap ,r  :Nread
cmap ,w  :Nwrite
gvim ftp://www.somedomain.com/index.html # uses netrw.vim
" appending to registers (use CAPITAL)
" yank 5 lines into "a" then add a further 5
[I     : show lines matching word under cursor <cword> (super)
" Conventional Shifting/Indenting
" visual shifting (builtin-repeat)
:vnoremap < <gv
:vnoremap > >gv
" Block shifting (magic)
" also
>% and <%
" Redirection & Paste register *
:redir @*                    : redirect commands to paste buffer
:redir END                   : end redirect
:redir >> out.txt            : redirect to a file
" Working with Paste buffer
"*yy                         : yank to paste
"*p                          : insert from paste buffer
" yank to paste buffer (ex mode)
:'a,'by*                     : Yank range into paste
:%y*                         : Yank whole buffer into paste
:.y*                         : Yank Current line to paster
" filter non-printable characters from the paste buffer
" useful when pasting from some gui application
:nmap <leader>p :let @* = substitute(@*,'[^[:print:]]','','g')<cr>"*p
" Re-Formatting text
gq}                          : Format a paragraph
gqap                         : Format a paragraph
ggVGgq                       : Reformat entire file
Vgq                          : current line
" break lines at 70 chars, if possible after a ;
" Operate command over multiple files
:argdo %s/foo/bar/e          : operate on all files in :args
:bufdo %s/foo/bar/e
:windo %s/foo/bar/e
:argdo exe '%!sort'|w!       : include an external command
" Command line tricks
gvim -h                    : help
ls | gvim -                : edit a stream!!
cat xx | gvim - -c "v/^\d\d\|^[3-9]/d " : filter a stream
gvim -o file1 file2        : open into a split
" execute one command after opening file
gvim.exe -c "/main" joe.c  : Open joe.c & jump to "main"
" execute multiple command on a single file
vim -c "%s/ABC/DEF/ge | update" file1.c
" execute multiple command on a group of files
vim -c "argdo %s/ABC/DEF/ge | update" *.c
" remove blocks of text from a series of files
vim -c "argdo /begin/+1,/end/-1g/^/d | update" *.c
" Automate editing of a file (Ex commands in convert.vim)
vim -s "convert.vim" file.c
#load VIM without .vimrc and plugins (clean VIM)
gvim -u NONE -U NONE -N
" Access paste buffer contents (put in a script/batch file)
gvim -c 'normal ggdG"*p' c:/aaa/xp
" print paste contents to default printer
gvim -c 's/^/\[email protected]*/|hardcopy!|q!'
" gvim's use of external grep (win32 or *nix)
:grep somestring *.php     : creates a list of all matching files
" use :cn(ext) :cp(rev) to navigate list
:h grep
" GVIM Difference Function (Brilliant)
gvim -d file1 file2        : vimdiff (compare differences)
dp                         : "put" difference under cursor to other file
do                         : "get" difference under cursor from other file
" Vim traps
In regular expressions you must backslash + (match 1 or more)
In regular expressions you must backslash | (or)
In regular expressions you must backslash ( (group)
In regular expressions you must backslash { (count)
/fred\+/                   : matches fred/freddy but not free
/\(fred\)\{2,3}/           : note what you have to break
" \v or very magic (usually) reduces backslashing
/codes\(\n\|\s\)*where  : normal regexp
/\vcodes(\n|\s)*where   : very magic
" pulling objects onto command/search line (SUPER)
<C-R><C-W> : pull word under the cursor into a command line or search
<C-R><C-A> : pull WORD under the cursor into a command line or search
<C-R>-                  : pull small register (also insert mode)
<C-R>[0-9a-z]           : pull named registers (also insert mode)
<C-R>%                  : pull file name (also #) (also insert mode)
<C-R>=somevar           : pull contents of a variable (eg :let sray="ray[0-9]")
" manipulating registers
:let @[email protected]_              : clear register a
:let @a=""              : clear register a
:let @*[email protected]              : copy register a to paste buffer
:let @*[email protected]:              : copy last command to paste buffer
:let @*[email protected]/              : copy last search to paste buffer
:let @*[email protected]%              : copy current filename to paste buffer

map   <f11> "qyy:let @[email protected]"zzz"
" help for help (USE TAB)
:h quickref             : VIM Quick Reference Sheet (ultra)
:h tips                 : Vim's own Tips Help
:h visual<C-D><tab>     : obtain  list of all visual help topics
                        : Then use tab to step thru them
:h ctrl<C-D>            : list help of all control keys
:helpg uganda           : grep HELP Files use :cn, :cp to find next
:h :r                   : help for :ex command
:h CTRL-R               : normal mode
:h /\r                  : what's \r in a regexp (matches a <CR>)
:h \\zs                 : double up backslash to find \zs in help
:h i_CTRL-R             : help for say <C-R> in insert mode
:h c_CTRL-R             : help for say <C-R> in command mode
:h v_CTRL-V             : visual mode
:h tutor                : VIM Tutor
<C-[>, <C-T>            : Move back & Forth in HELP History
gvim -h                 : VIM Command Line Help
" where was an option set
:scriptnames            : list all plugins, _vimrcs loaded (super)
:verbose set history?   : reveals value of history and where set
:function               : list functions
:func SearchCompl       : List particular function
" making your own VIM help
:helptags /vim/vim64/doc  : rebuild all *.txt help files in /doc
:help add-local-help
" running file thru an external program (eg php)
map   <f9>   :w<CR>:!c:/php/php.exe %<CR>
map   <f2>   :w<CR>:!perl -c %<CR>
" capturing output of current script in a separate buffer
:new | r!perl #                   : opens new buffer,read other buffer
:new! x.out | r!perl #            : same with named file
" create a new buffer, paste a register "q" into it, then sort new buffer
:new +put q|%!sort
" Inserting DOS Carriage Returns
:%s/$/\<C-V><C-M>&/g          :  that's what you type
:%s/$/\<C-Q><C-M>&/g          :  for Win32
:%s/$/\^M&/g                  :  what you'll see where ^M is ONE character
" automatically delete trailing Dos-returns,whitespace
autocmd BufRead * silent! %s/[\r \t]\+$//
autocmd BufEnter *.php :%s/[ \t\r]\+$//e
" perform an action on a particular file or file type
autocmd VimEnter c:/intranet/note011.txt normal! ggVGg?
autocmd FileType *.pl exec('set fileformats=unix')
" Retrieving last command line command for copy & pasting into text
" Retrieving last Search Command for copy & pasting into text
" more completions
<C-X><C-F>                        :insert name of a file in current directory
" Substituting a Visual area
" select visual area as usual (:h visual) then type :s/Emacs/Vim/ etc
:'<,'>s/Emacs/Vim/g               : REMEMBER you dont type the '<.'>
gv                                : Re-select the previous visual area (ULTRA)
" inserting line number into file
:g/^/exec "s/^/".strpart(line(".")."    ", 0, 4)
:%s/^/\=strpart(line(".")."     ", 0, 5)
:%s/^/\=line('.'). ' '
#numbering lines VIM way
:set number                       : show line numbers
:map <F12> :set number!<CR>       : Show linenumbers flip-flop
:%s/^/\=strpart(line('.')."        ",0,&ts)
#numbering lines (need Perl on PC) starting from arbitrary number
:'a,'b!perl -pne 'BEGIN{$a=223} substr($_,2,0)=$a++'
#Produce a list of numbers
#Type in number on line say 223 in an empty file
qqmnYP`n^Aq                       : in recording q repeat with @q
" increment existing numbers to end of file (type <c-a> as 5 characters)
:.,$g/^\d/exe "normal! \<c-a>"
" advanced incrementing
" advanced incrementing (really useful)
" put following in _vimrc
let g:I=0
function! INC(increment)
let g:I =g:I + a:increment
return g:I
" eg create list starting from 223 incrementing by 5 between markers a,b
:let I=223
" create a map for INC
cab viminc :let I=223 \| 'a,'bs/$/\=INC(5)/
" generate a list of numbers  23-64
o23<ESC>qqYp<C-A>[email protected]
" editing/moving within current insert (Really useful)
<C-U>                             : delete all entered
<C-W>                             : delete last word
<HOME><END>                       : beginning/end of line
<C-LEFTARROW><C-RIGHTARROW>       : jump one word backwards/forwards
<C-X><C-E>,<C-X><C-Y>             : scroll while staying put in insert
#encryption (use with care: DON'T FORGET your KEY)
:X                                : you will be prompted for a key
:h :X
" modeline (make a file readonly etc) must be in first/last 5 lines
// vim:noai:ts=2:sw=4:readonly:
" vim:ft=html:                    : says use HTML Syntax highlighting
:h modeline
" Creating your own GUI Toolbar entry
amenu  Modeline.Insert\ a\ VIM\ modeline <Esc><Esc>ggOvim:ff=unix ts=4 ss=4<CR>vim60:fdm=marker<esc>gg
" A function to save word under cursor to a file
function! SaveWord()
   normal yiw
   exe ':!echo '[email protected]' >> word.txt'
map ,p :call SaveWord()
" function to delete duplicate lines
function! Del()
 if getline(".") == getline(line(".") - 1)
   norm dd

:g/^/ call Del()
" Digraphs (non alpha-numerics)
:digraphs                         : display table
:h dig                            : help
i<C-K>e'                          : enters �
i<C-V>233                         : enters � (Unix)
i<C-Q>233                         : enters � (Win32)
ga                                : View hex value of any character
#Deleting non-ascii characters (some invisible)
:%s/[<C-V>128-<C-V>255]//gi       : where you have to type the Control-V
:%s/[�-�]//gi                     : Should see a black square & a dotted y
:%s/[<C-V>128-<C-V>255<C-V>01-<C-V>31]//gi : All pesky non-asciis
:exec "norm /[\x00-\x1f\x80-\xff]/"        : same thing
#Pull a non-ascii character onto search bar
yl/<C-R>"                         :
/[^a-zA-Z0-9_[:space:][:punct:]]  : search for all non-ascii
" All file completions grouped (for example main_c.c)
:e main_<tab>                     : tab completes
gf                                : open file under cursor  (normal)
main_<C-X><C-F>                   : include NAME of file in text (insert mode)
" Complex Vim
" swap two words
:%s/\<\(on\|off\)\>/\=strpart("offon", 3 * ("off" == submatch(0)), 3)/g
" swap two words
:vnoremap <C-X> <Esc>`.``gvP``P
" Convert Text File to HTML
:runtime! syntax/2html.vim        : convert txt to html
:h 2html
" VIM has internal grep
:grep some_keyword *.c            : get list of all c-files containing keyword
:cn                               : go to next occurrence
" Force Syntax coloring for a file that has no extension .pl
:set syntax=perl
" Remove syntax coloring (useful for all sorts of reasons)
:set syntax off
" change coloring scheme (any file in ~vim/vim??/colors)
:colorscheme blue
" Force HTML Syntax highlighting by using a modeline
# vim:ft=html:
" Force syntax automatically (for a file with non-standard extension)
au BufRead,BufNewFile */Content.IE?/* setfiletype html
:set noma (non modifiable)        : Prevents modifications
:set ro (Read Only)               : Protect a file from unintentional writes
" Sessions (Open a set of files)
gvim file1.c file2.c lib/lib.h lib/lib2.h : load files for "session"
:mksession                        : Make a Session file (default Session.vim)
gvim -S Session.vim               : Reload all files
#tags (jumping to subroutines/functions)
taglist.vim                       : popular plugin
:Tlist                            : display Tags (list of functions)
<C-]>                             : jump to function under cursor
" columnise a csv file for display only as may crop wide columns
:let width = 20
:let fill=' ' | while strlen(fill) < width | let fill=fill.fill | endwhile
:%s/\([^;]*\);\=/\=strpart(submatch(1).fill, 0, width)/ge
" Highlight a particular csv column (put in .vimrc)
function! CSVH(x)
    execute 'match Keyword /^\([^,]*,\)\{'.a:x.'}\zs[^,]*/'
    execute 'normal ^'.a:x.'f,'
command! -nargs=1 Csv :call CSVH(<args>)
" call with
:Csv 5                             : highlight fifth column
" folding : hide sections to allow easier comparisons
zf}                               : fold paragraph using motion
v}zf                              : fold paragraph using visual
zf'a                              : fold to mark
zo                                : open fold
zc                                : re-close fold
" displaying "invisible characters"
:set list
:h listchars
" How to paste "normal commands" w/o entering insert mode
:norm qqy$jq
" manipulating file names
:h filename-modifiers             : help
:w %                              : write to current file name
:w %:r.cfm                        : change file extention to .cfm
:!echo %:p                        : full path & file name
:!echo %:p:h                      : full path only
:!echo %:t                        : filename only
:reg %                            : display filename
<C-R>%                            : insert filename (insert mode)
"%p                               : insert filename (normal mode)
/<C-R>%                           : Search for file name in text
" delete without destroying default buffer contents
"_d                               : what you've ALWAYS wanted
"_dw                              : eg delete word (use blackhole)
" pull full path name into paste buffer for attachment to email etc
nnoremap <F2> :let @*=expand("%:p")<cr> :unix
nnoremap <F2> :let @*=substitute(expand("%:p"), "/", "\\", "g")<cr> :win32
" Simple Shell script to rename files w/o leaving vim
$ vim
:r! ls *.c
:%s/\(.*\).c/mv & \1.bla
:w !sh
" count words in a text file
" example of setting your own highlighting
:syn match DoubleSpace "  "
:hi def DoubleSpace guibg=#e0e0e0
" reproduce previous line word by word
imap ]  @@@<ESC>[email protected]@@<CR>P/@@@<CR>3s
nmap ] [email protected]@@<ESC>[email protected]@@<CR>P/@@@<CR>3s
" Programming keys depending on file type
:autocmd bufenter *.tex map <F1> :!latex %<CR>
:autocmd bufenter *.tex map <F2> :!xdvi -hush %<.dvi&<CR>
" reading Ms-Word documents, requires antiword
:autocmd BufReadPre *.doc set ro
:autocmd BufReadPre *.doc set hlsearch!
:autocmd BufReadPost *.doc %!antiword "%"
" a folding method
vim: filetype=help foldmethod=marker foldmarker=<<<,>>>
A really big section closed with a tag <<< 
--- remember folds can be nested --- 
Closing tag >>> 
" Just Another Vim Hacker JAVH
vim -c ":%s%s*%Cyrnfr)fcbafbe[Oenz(Zbbyranne%|:%s)[[()])-)Ig|norm Vg?"
If you liked these please return to www.vim.org
and vote for this tip (It does encourage me!!)
Tip 305
Please email any errors, tips etc to
[email protected]
updated version at https://www.rayninfo.co.uk/vimtips.html
" Information Sources
comp.editors "VIM" newsgroup
groups.yahoo.com/group/vim "VIM" specific newsgroup
VIM Webring
Vim Book
Searchable VIM Doc
VimTips PDF Version (New)
" : commands to neutralise < for HTML display and publish
" use [email protected]" to execute following commands
:w!|sav! vimtips.html|:/^__BEGIN__/,/^__END__/s#<#\<#g|:w!|/vimtips[f]tp/|:!vimtipsftp

Vim tips: Working with external commands

Wednesday October 25, 2006 (08:01 AM GMT)

By: Joe 'Zonker' Brockmeier

Vim is a powerful editing tool, but there are some things it just can't do. However, Vim lets you access shell commands and utilities without leaving Vim, and that lets you perform some amazing tricks.

If you run :shell or just :sh while you're in the editor, Vim (or Gvim, if you're partial to Vim's GUI) will place you in an interactive shell. You can run whatever commands you want, and resume your Vim session by exiting the shell.

As most other *nix applications, you can also pause Vim with Ctrl-z, which will drop you back to the shell. When you're finished, you can resume Vim with fg. (This is a feature of the shell, not a Vim feature.)

Have you ever started editing a file, made a bunch of changes, and then typed :w to write your changes, only to find that the file is read-only? You can deal with that in a couple of ways, but one of the easiest things to do is to invoke a shell from within Vim and change the file's permissions before you save it again.


Vim also allows you to execute a command directly from the editor, without needing to drop to a shell, by using bang (!) followed by the command to be run. For instance, if you're editing a file in Vim and want to find out how many words are in the file, run

 :! wc % 

This tells Vim to run the file (%) through the wc utility and report the results. Vim will display the command output at the bottom of the editing window until you press Enter. Note that this command runs the file through the command, and not the contents of the buffer -- so if you haven't saved recently, it won't report your most recent word count.

Bang works best with non-interactive commands. You wouldn't want to run top or another interactive command using :! command , but you could drop to a shell and run such a command with :sh or Ctrl-z.

The bang command can be useful if you're using Vim for programming. If you're writing a PHP script, for example, you could use PHP's syntax check option (-l) to see if your script has any syntax errors:

 :! php5 -l % 

If you're working on a script or project, you might want to check it regularly, and with minimal typing. You can scroll through Vim's command history by using the up arrow, but if you just want to rerun the last external command, you can use :!! instead.

Reading command output

Most Vim users are already familiar with using the read command, which inserts text from a specified file into the current buffer, like so:

 :r textfile

This is handy, but many users aren't aware that you can also read in the output of shell applications. For example, if you wanted to include a list of files from a specific directory, you could include them using this read command:

 :r ! ls -1 /home/user/directory 

This tells Vim to execute the command ls -1 /home/user/directory and then redirect the output of that command into the buffer. You could also use this feature to read the text from a Web page into the file that you're editing, using a text-mode browser such as w3m. It's pretty simple to grab a page using w3m and dump it right into your editing session without leaving Vim:

 :r ! w3m https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vi -dump 

The -dump option tells w3m to simply spit out the Web page as plain text and exit.

It's also possible to execute multiple commands to process your text before reading it into Vim. A simple example would be to list the directory contents, then pipe the output to the sort command to sort the filenames in reverse order, before inserting the text into the current buffer:

 :r ! ls -1 /home/user/directory | sort -r 

The read command can also come in handy if you're prepping an incident report from server logs. Let's say you wanted to include all of the errors in an Apache log that include a specific string. You could grep the log and insert the input into your Vim session:

 :r ! grep string /var/log/apache2/site-error.log 

Vim makes it easy to redirect the output of most standard *nix utilities into a file, and to pipe text from the file it's editing into standard *nix utilities.

Filtering text through external filters

While in Vim, you can select a range of text and run that text through an external command. In visual mode, just highlight the text you want to work with, then run :! commandname . The highlighted text will be replaced by the output of the command. Let's say you wanted to use weak encryption on part of a file by running it through the rot13 utility. Use v, V, or Ctrl-v to enter the visual mode of your choice and select the text you want to encrypt. Then run :! rot13 to replace the selected text with rot13-encoded text. This might be handy when composing an email containing a spoiler about the latest episode of Battlestar Galactica for sending to a mailing list. It's trivial for recipients to decode rot13-encoded text, but the folks who don't like spoilers won't have any surprises ruined by skimming over the text.

You can also specify a range of lines to process, rather than selecting lines in visual mode. For instance, to filter lines 20 through 25 of a file through rot13:

 :20,25 ! rot13 

Vim will run the text through rot13 and insert it in place of the existing text. If you accidentally overwrite some text in Vim that you didn't mean to, don't worry -- Vim's undo command (u) allows you to restore the original text.

Using a different shell

By default, Vim should use your default shell. If you want to make sure that Vim's using your default shell, you can check the value of the shell option by running this query:

 :set shell ? 

Vim will display shell=/bin/bash, or whatever the shell is set to. Note that this works with other options as well, so you can use :set option ? to check the value of any option within Vim.

If you'd like to change the value of the shell temporarily, run :set shell=/path/to/shell with the correct path to your chosen shell. For instance, on Ubuntu, if you want to use the Korn shell, you can run :set shell=/usr/bin/ksh -- assuming you have the Korn shell installed.

To make the change of shells permanent, open your ~/.vimrc and add this line:

 set shell=/path/to/shell

The next time you start a Vim session, the new shell option will be set.

Get in the habit of using Vim's :shell command and the :! utility, and you'll find that you can be even more productive while using Vim than you might have thought possible.