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intro.txt     For Vim version 7.4.  Last change: 2013 Jun 17


                  VIM REFERENCE MANUAL    by Bram Moolenaar


Introduction to Vim                                     ref reference

1. Introduction                 intro
2. Vim on the internet          internet
3. Credits                      credits
4. Notation                     notation
5. Modes, introduction          vim-modes-intro
6. Switching from mode to mode  mode-switching
7. The window contents          window-contents
8. Definitions                  definitions

==============================================================================
1. Introduction                                         intro

Vim stands for Vi IMproved.  It used to be Vi IMitation, but there are so many
improvements that a name change was appropriate.  Vim is a text editor which
includes almost all the commands from the Unix program "Vi" and a lot of new
ones.  It is very useful for editing programs and other plain text.
   All commands are given with the keyboard.  This has the advantage that you
can keep your fingers on the keyboard and your eyes on the screen.  For those
who want it, there is mouse support and a GUI version with scrollbars and
menus (see gui.txt).

An overview of this manual can be found in the file "help.txt", help.txt.
It can be accessed from within Vim with the <Help> or <F1> key and with the
:help command (just type ":help", without the bars or quotes).
   The 'helpfile' option can be set to the name of the help file, in case it
is not located in the default place.  You can jump to subjects like with tags:
Use CTRL-] to jump to a subject under the cursor, use CTRL-T to jump back.

Throughout this manual the differences between Vi and Vim are mentioned in
curly braces, like this: {Vi does not have on-line help}.  See vi_diff.txt
for a summary of the differences between Vim and Vi.

This manual refers to Vim on various machines.  There may be small differences
between different computers and terminals.  Besides the remarks given in this
document, there is a separate document for each supported system, see
sys-file-list.

                                                        pronounce
Vim is pronounced as one word, like Jim, not vi-ai-em.  It's written with a
capital, since it's a name, again like Jim.

This manual is a reference for all the Vim commands and options.  This is not
an introduction to the use of Vi or Vim, it gets a bit complicated here and
there.  For beginners, there is a hands-on tutor.  To learn using Vim, read
the user manual usr_toc.txt.

                                                        book
There are many books on Vi that contain a section for beginners.  There are
two books I can recommend:

        "Vim - Vi Improved" by Steve Oualline

This is the very first book completely dedicated to Vim.  It is very good for
beginners.  The most often used commands are explained with pictures and
examples.  The less often used commands are also explained, the more advanced
features are summarized.  There is a comprehensive index and a quick
reference.  Parts of this book have been included in the user manual
frombook.
Published by New Riders Publishing.  ISBN: 0735710015
For more information try one of these:
        http://iccf-holland.org/click5.html
        http://www.vim.org/iccf/click5.html

        "Learning the Vi editor" by Linda Lamb and Arnold Robbins

This is a book about Vi that includes a chapter on Vim (in the sixth edition).
The first steps in Vi are explained very well.  The commands that Vim adds are
only briefly mentioned.  There is also a German translation.
Published by O'Reilly.  ISBN: 1-56592-426-6.

==============================================================================
2. Vim on the internet                                  internet

                        www WWW  faq FAQ distribution download
The Vim pages contain the most recent information about Vim.  They also
contain links to the most recent version of Vim.  The FAQ is a list of
Frequently Asked Questions.  Read this if you have problems.

        VIM home page:    http://www.vim.org/
        VIM FAQ:          http://vimdoc.sf.net/
        Downloading:      ftp://ftp.vim.org/pub/vim/MIRRORS


Usenet News group where Vim is discussed:               news usenet
        comp.editors
This group is also for other editors.  If you write about Vim, don't forget to
mention that.

                                                mail-list maillist
There are several mailing lists for Vim:
<vim@vim.org>
        For discussions about using existing versions of Vim: Useful mappings,
        questions, answers, where to get a specific version, etc.  There are
        quite a few people watching this list and answering questions, also
        for beginners.  Don't hesitate to ask your question here.
<vim-dev@vim.org>                               vim-dev vimdev
        For discussions about changing Vim: New features, porting, patches,
        beta-test versions, etc.
<vim-announce@vim.org>                          vim-announce
        Announcements about new versions of Vim; also for beta-test versions
        and ports to different systems.  This is a read-only list.
<vim-multibyte@vim.org>                         vim-multibyte
        For discussions about using and improving the multi-byte aspects of
        Vim.
<vim-mac@vim.org>                               vim-mac
        For discussions about using and improving the Macintosh version of
        Vim.

See http://www.vim.org/maillist.php for the latest information.

NOTE:
- You can only send messages to these lists if you have subscribed!
- You need to send the messages from the same location as where you subscribed
  from (to avoid spam mail).
- Maximum message size is 40000 characters.

                                                subscribe-maillist
If you want to join, send a message to
        <vim-subscribe@vim.org>
Make sure that your "From:" address is correct.  Then the list server will
give you help on how to subscribe.

                                                maillist-archive
For more information and archives look on the Vim maillist page:
http://www.vim.org/maillist.php


Bug reports:                            bugs bug-reports bugreport.vim

Send bug reports to: Vim Developers <vim_dev@vim.org>
This is a maillist, many people will see the message.  If you don't want that,
e.g. because it is a security issue, send it to <bugs@vim.org>, this only goes
to the Vim maintainer (that's Bram).
Please be brief; all the time that is spent on answering mail is subtracted
from the time that is spent on improving Vim!  Always give a reproducible
example and try to find out which settings or other things influence the
appearance of the bug.  Try different machines, if possible.  Send me patches
if you can!

It will help to include information about the version of Vim you are using and
your setup.  You can get the information with this command: 
   :so $VIMRUNTIME/bugreport.vim
This will create a file "bugreport.txt" in the current directory, with a lot
of information of your environment.  Before sending this out, check if it
doesn't contain any confidential information!

If Vim crashes, please try to find out where.  You can find help on this here:
debug.txt.

In case of doubt or when you wonder if the problem has already been fixed but
you can't find a fix for it, become a member of the vim-dev maillist and ask
your question there. maillist

                                                        year-2000 Y2K
Since Vim internally doesn't use dates for editing, there is no year 2000
problem to worry about.  Vim does use the time in the form of seconds since
January 1st 1970.  It is used for a time-stamp check of the edited file and
the swap file, which is not critical and should only cause warning messages.

There might be a year 2038 problem, when the seconds don't fit in a 32 bit int
anymore.  This depends on the compiler, libraries and operating system.
Specifically, time_t and the ctime() function are used.  And the time_t is
stored in four bytes in the swap file.  But that's only used for printing a
file date/time for recovery, it will never affect normal editing.

The Vim strftime() function directly uses the strftime() system function.
localtime() uses the time() system function.  getftime() uses the time
returned by the stat() system function.  If your system libraries are year
2000 compliant, Vim is too.

The user may create scripts for Vim that use external commands.  These might
introduce Y2K problems, but those are not really part of Vim itself.

==============================================================================
3. Credits                              credits author Bram Moolenaar

Most of Vim was written by Bram Moolenaar <Bram@vim.org>.

Parts of the documentation come from several Vi manuals, written by:
        W.N. Joy
        Alan P.W. Hewett
        Mark Horton

The Vim editor is based on Stevie and includes (ideas from) other software,
worked on by the people mentioned here.  Other people helped by sending me
patches, suggestions and giving feedback about what is good and bad in Vim.

Vim would never have become what it is now, without the help of these people!

        Ron Aaron               Win32 GUI changes
        Mohsin Ahmed            encryption
        Zoltan Arpadffy         work on VMS port
        Tony Andrews            Stevie
        Gert van Antwerpen      changes for DJGPP on MS-DOS
        Berkeley DB(3)          ideas for swap file implementation
        Keith Bostic            Nvi
        Walter Briscoe          Makefile updates, various patches
        Ralf Brown              SPAWNO library for MS-DOS
        Robert Colon            many useful remarks
        Marcin Dalecki          GTK+ GUI port, toolbar icons, gettext()
        Kayhan Demirel          sent me news in Uganda
        Chris & John Downey     xvi (ideas for multi-windows version)
        Henk Elbers             first VMS port
        Daniel Elstner          GTK+ 2 port
        Eric Fischer            Mac port, 'cindent', and other improvements
        Benji Fisher            Answering lots of user questions
        Bill Foster             Athena GUI port
        Google                  Lets me work on Vim one day a week
        Loic Grenie             xvim (ideas for multi windows version)
        Sven Guckes             Vim promoter and previous WWW page maintainer
        Darren Hiebert          Exuberant ctags
        Jason Hildebrand        GTK+ 2 port
        Bruce Hunsaker          improvements for VMS port
        Andy Kahn               Cscope support, GTK+ GUI port
        Oezguer Kesim           Maintainer of Vim Mailing Lists
        Axel Kielhorn           work on the Macintosh port
        Steve Kirkendall        Elvis
        Roger Knobbe            original port to Windows NT
        Sergey Laskavy          Vim's help from Moscow
        Felix von Leitner       Previous maintainer of Vim Mailing Lists
        David Leonard           Port of Python extensions to Unix
        Avner Lottem            Edit in right-to-left windows
        Flemming Madsen         X11 client-server, various features and patches
        Tony Mechelynck         answers many user questions
        Paul Moore              Python interface extensions, many patches
        Katsuhito Nagano        Work on multi-byte versions
        Sung-Hyun Nam           Work on multi-byte versions
        Vince Negri             Win32 GUI and generic console enhancements
        Steve Oualline          Author of the first Vim book frombook
        Dominique Pelle         valgrind reports and many fixes
        A.Politz                Many bug reports and some fixes
        George V. Reilly        Win32 port, Win32 GUI start-off
        Stephen Riehm           bug collector
        Stefan Roemer           various patches and help to users
        Ralf Schandl            IBM OS/390 port
        Olaf Seibert            DICE and BeBox version, regexp improvements
        Mortaza Shiran          Farsi patches
        Peter da Silva          termlib
        Paul Slootman           OS/2 port
        Henry Spencer           regular expressions
        Dany St-Amant           Macintosh port
        Tim Thompson            Stevie
        G. R. (Fred) Walter     Stevie
        Sven Verdoolaege        Perl interface
        Robert Webb             Command-line completion, GUI versions, and
                                lots of patches
        Ingo Wilken             Tcl interface
        Mike Williams           PostScript printing
        Juergen Weigert         Lattice version, AUX improvements, UNIX and
                                MS-DOS ports, autoconf
        Stefan 'Sec' Zehl       Maintainer of vim.org

I wish to thank all the people that sent me bug reports and suggestions.  The
list is too long to mention them all here.  Vim would not be the same without
the ideas from all these people: They keep Vim alive!
love peace friendship gross-national-happiness


In this documentation there are several references to other versions of Vi:
                                                        Vi vi
Vi      "the original".  Without further remarks this is the version
        of Vi that appeared in Sun OS 4.x.  ":version" returns
        "Version 3.7, 6/7/85".  Sometimes other versions are referred
        to.  Only runs under Unix.  Source code only available with a
        license.  More information on Vi can be found through:
                http://vi-editor.org    [doesn't currently work...]
                                                        Posix
Posix   From the IEEE standard 1003.2, Part 2: Shell and utilities.
        Generally known as "Posix".  This is a textual description of
        how Vi is supposed to work.
        See posix-compliance.
                                                        Nvi
Nvi     The "New" Vi.  The version of Vi that comes with BSD 4.4 and FreeBSD.
        Very good compatibility with the original Vi, with a few extensions.
        The version used is 1.79.  ":version" returns "Version 1.79
        (10/23/96)".  There has been no release the last few years, although
        there is a development version 1.81.
        Source code is freely available.
                                                        Elvis
Elvis   Another Vi clone, made by Steve Kirkendall.  Very compact but isn't
        as flexible as Vim.
        The version used is 2.1.  It is still being developed.  Source code is
        freely available.

==============================================================================
4. Notation                                             notation

When syntax highlighting is used to read this, text that is not typed
literally is often highlighted with the Special group.  These are items in [],
{} and <>, and CTRL-X.

Note that Vim uses all possible characters in commands.  Sometimes the [], {}
and <> are part of what you type, the context should make this clear.


[]              Characters in square brackets are optional.

                                                    count [count]
[count]         An optional number that may precede the command to multiply
                or iterate the command.  If no number is given, a count of one
                is used, unless otherwise noted.  Note that in this manual the
                [count] is not mentioned in the description of the command,
                but only in the explanation.  This was done to make the
                commands easier to look up.  If the 'showcmd' option is on,
                the (partially) entered count is shown at the bottom of the
                window.  You can use <Del> to erase the last digit (N<Del>).

                                                        [quotex]
["x]            An optional register designation where text can be stored.
                See registers.  The x is a single character between 'a' and
                'z' or 'A' and 'Z' or '"', and in some cases (with the put
                command) between '0' and '9', '%', '#', or others.  The
                uppercase and lowercase letter designate the same register,
                but the lowercase letter is used to overwrite the previous
                register contents, while the uppercase letter is used to
                append to the previous register contents.  Without the ""x" or
                with """" the stored text is put into the unnamed register.

                                                        {}
{}              Curly braces denote parts of the command which must appear,
                but which can take a number of different values.  The
                differences between Vim and Vi are also given in curly braces
                (this will be clear from the context).

                                                        {char1-char2}
{char1-char2}   A single character from the range char1 to char2.  For
                example: {a-z} is a lowercase letter.  Multiple ranges may be
                concatenated.  For example, {a-zA-Z0-9} is any alphanumeric
                character.

                                                {motion} movement
{motion}        A command that moves the cursor.  These are explained in
                motion.txt.  Examples:
                        w               to start of next word
                        b               to begin of current word
                        4j              four lines down
                        /The<CR>        to next occurrence of "The"
                This is used after an operator command to move over the text
                that is to be operated upon.
                - If the motion includes a count and the operator also has a
                  count, the two counts are multiplied.  For example: "2d3w"
                  deletes six words.
                - The motion can be backwards, e.g. "db" to delete to the
                  start of the word.
                - The motion can also be a mouse click.  The mouse is not
                  supported in every terminal though.
                - The ":omap" command can be used to map characters while an
                  operator is pending.
                - Ex commands can be used to move the cursor.  This can be
                  used to call a function that does some complicated motion.
                  The motion is always characterwise exclusive, no matter
                  what ":" command is used.  This means it's impossible to
                  include the last character of a line without the line break
                  (unless 'virtualedit' is set).
                  If the Ex command changes the text before where the operator
                  starts or jumps to another buffer the result is
                  unpredictable.  It is possible to change the text further
                  down.  Jumping to another buffer is possible if the current
                  buffer is not unloaded.

                                                        {Visual}
{Visual}        A selected text area.  It is started with the "v", "V", or
                CTRL-V command, then any cursor movement command can be used
                to change the end of the selected text.
                This is used before an operator command to highlight the
                text that is to be operated upon.
                See Visual-mode.

                                                        <character>
<character>     A special character from the table below, optionally with
                modifiers, or a single ASCII character with modifiers.

                                                        'character'
'c'             A single ASCII character.

                                                        CTRL-{char}
CTRL-{char}     {char} typed as a control character; that is, typing {char}
                while holding the CTRL key down.  The case of {char} does not
                matter; thus CTRL-A and CTRL-a are equivalent.  But on some
                terminals, using the SHIFT key will produce another code,
                don't use it then.

                                                        'option'
'option'        An option, or parameter, that can be set to a value, is
                enclosed in single quotes.  See options.

                                                        quotecommandquote
"command"       A reference to a command that you can type is enclosed in
                double quotes.
command       New style command, this distinguishes it from other quoted
                text and strings.

                                        key-notation key-codes keycodes
These names for keys are used in the documentation.  They can also be used
with the ":map" command (insert the key name by pressing CTRL-K and then the
key you want the name for).

notation        meaning             equivalent  decimal value(s)        
-----------------------------------------------------------------------
<Nul>           zero                    CTRL-@    0 (stored as 10) <Nul>
<BS>            backspace               CTRL-H    8     backspace
<Tab>           tab                     CTRL-I    9     tab Tab
                                                        linefeed
<NL>            linefeed                CTRL-J   10 (used for <Nul>)
<FF>            formfeed                CTRL-L   12     formfeed
<CR>            carriage return         CTRL-M   13     carriage-return
<Return>        same as <CR>                            <Return>
<Enter>         same as <CR>                            <Enter>
<Esc>           escape                  CTRL-[   27     escape <Esc>
<Space>         space                            32     space
<lt>            less-than               <        60     *<lt>*
<Bslash>        backslash               \        92     backslash <Bslash>
<Bar>           vertical bar            |       124     <Bar>
<Del>           delete                          127
<CSI>           command sequence intro  ALT-Esc 155     <CSI>
<xCSI>          CSI when typed in the GUI               <xCSI>

<EOL>           end-of-line (can be <CR>, <LF> or <CR><LF>,
                depends on system and 'fileformat')     <EOL>

<Up>            cursor-up                       cursor-up cursor_up
<Down>          cursor-down                     cursor-down cursor_down
<Left>          cursor-left                     cursor-left cursor_left
<Right>         cursor-right                    cursor-right cursor_right
<S-Up>          shift-cursor-up
<S-Down>        shift-cursor-down
<S-Left>        shift-cursor-left
<S-Right>       shift-cursor-right
<C-Left>        control-cursor-left
<C-Right>       control-cursor-right
<F1> - <F12>    function keys 1 to 12           function_key function-key
<S-F1> - <S-F12> shift-function keys 1 to 12    <S-F1>
<Help>          help key
<Undo>          undo key
<Insert>        insert key
<Home>          home                            home
<End>           end                             end
<PageUp>        page-up                         page_up page-up
<PageDown>      page-down                       page_down page-down
<kHome>         keypad home (upper left)        keypad-home
<kEnd>          keypad end (lower left)         keypad-end
<kPageUp>       keypad page-up (upper right)    keypad-page-up
<kPageDown>     keypad page-down (lower right)  keypad-page-down
<kPlus>         keypad +                        keypad-plus
<kMinus>        keypad -                        keypad-minus
<kMultiply>     keypad *                        keypad-multiply
<kDivide>       keypad /                        keypad-divide
<kEnter>        keypad Enter                    keypad-enter
<kPoint>        keypad Decimal point            keypad-point
<k0> - <k9>     keypad 0 to 9                   keypad-0 keypad-9
<S-...>         shift-key                       shift <S-
<C-...>         control-key                     control ctrl <C-
<M-...>         alt-key or meta-key             meta alt <M-
<A-...>         same as <M-...>                 <A-
<D-...>         command-key (Macintosh only)    <D-
<t_xx>          key with "xx" entry in termcap
-----------------------------------------------------------------------

Note: The shifted cursor keys, the help key, and the undo key are only
available on a few terminals.  On the Amiga, shifted function key 10 produces
a code (CSI) that is also used by key sequences.  It will be recognized only
after typing another key.

Note: There are two codes for the delete key.  127 is the decimal ASCII value
for the delete key, which is always recognized.  Some delete keys send another
value, in which case this value is obtained from the termcap entry "kD".  Both
values have the same effect.  Also see :fixdel.

Note: The keypad keys are used in the same way as the corresponding "normal"
keys.  For example, <kHome> has the same effect as <Home>.  If a keypad key
sends the same raw key code as its non-keypad equivalent, it will be
recognized as the non-keypad code.  For example, when <kHome> sends the same
code as <Home>, when pressing <kHome> Vim will think <Home> was pressed.
Mapping <kHome> will not work then.

                                                                <>
Examples are often given in the <> notation.  Sometimes this is just to make
clear what you need to type, but often it can be typed literally, e.g., with
the ":map" command.  The rules are:
 1.  Any printable characters are typed directly, except backslash and '<'
 2.  A backslash is represented with "\\", double backslash, or "<Bslash>".
 3.  A real '<' is represented with "\<" or "<lt>".  When there is no
     confusion possible, a '<' can be used directly.
 4.  "<key>" means the special key typed.  This is the notation explained in
     the table above.  A few examples:
           <Esc>                Escape key
           <C-G>                CTRL-G
           <Up>                 cursor up key
           <C-LeftMouse>        Control- left mouse click
           <S-F11>              Shifted function key 11
           <M-a>                Meta- a  ('a' with bit 8 set)
           <M-A>                Meta- A  ('A' with bit 8 set)
           <t_kd>               "kd" termcap entry (cursor down key)

If you want to use the full <> notation in Vim, you have to make sure the '<'
flag is excluded from 'cpoptions' (when 'compatible' is not set, it already is
by default). 
        :set cpo-=<
The <> notation uses <lt> to escape the special meaning of key names.  Using a
backslash also works, but only when 'cpoptions' does not include the 'B' flag.

Examples for mapping CTRL-H to the six characters "<Home>": 
        :imap <C-H> \<Home>
        :imap <C-H> <lt>Home>
The first one only works when the 'B' flag is not in 'cpoptions'.  The second
one always works.
To get a literal "<lt>" in a mapping: 
        :map <C-L> <lt>lt>

For mapping, abbreviation and menu commands you can then copy-paste the
examples and use them directly.  Or type them literally, including the '<' and
'>' characters.  This does NOT work for other commands, like ":set" and
":autocmd"!

==============================================================================
5. Modes, introduction                          vim-modes-intro vim-modes

Vim has six BASIC modes:

                                        Normal Normal-mode command-mode
Normal mode             In Normal mode you can enter all the normal editor
                        commands.  If you start the editor you are in this
                        mode (unless you have set the 'insertmode' option,
                        see below).  This is also known as command mode.

Visual mode             This is like Normal mode, but the movement commands
                        extend a highlighted area.  When a non-movement
                        command is used, it is executed for the highlighted
                        area.  See Visual-mode.
                        If the 'showmode' option is on "-- VISUAL --" is shown
                        at the bottom of the window.

Select mode             This looks most like the MS-Windows selection mode.
                        Typing a printable character deletes the selection
                        and starts Insert mode.  See Select-mode.
                        If the 'showmode' option is on "-- SELECT --" is shown
                        at the bottom of the window.

Insert mode             In Insert mode the text you type is inserted into the
                        buffer.  See Insert-mode.
                        If the 'showmode' option is on "-- INSERT --" is shown
                        at the bottom of the window.

Command-line mode       In Command-line mode (also called Cmdline mode) you
Cmdline mode            can enter one line of text at the bottom of the
                        window.  This is for the Ex commands, ":", the pattern
                        search commands, "?" and "/", and the filter command,
                        "!".  Cmdline-mode

Ex mode                 Like Command-line mode, but after entering a command
                        you remain in Ex mode.  Very limited editing of the
                        command line.  Ex-mode

There are six ADDITIONAL modes.  These are variants of the BASIC modes:

                                Operator-pending Operator-pending-mode
Operator-pending mode   This is like Normal mode, but after an operator
                        command has started, and Vim is waiting for a {motion}
                        to specify the text that the operator will work on.

Replace mode            Replace mode is a special case of Insert mode.  You
                        can do the same things as in Insert mode, but for
                        each character you enter, one character of the existing
                        text is deleted.  See Replace-mode.
                        If the 'showmode' option is on "-- REPLACE --" is
                        shown at the bottom of the window.

Virtual Replace mode    Virtual Replace mode is similar to Replace mode, but
                        instead of file characters you are replacing screen
                        real estate.  See Virtual-Replace-mode.
                        If the 'showmode' option is on "-- VREPLACE --" is
                        shown at the bottom of the window.

Insert Normal mode      Entered when CTRL-O given in Insert mode.  This is
                        like Normal mode, but after executing one command Vim
                        returns to Insert mode.
                        If the 'showmode' option is on "-- (insert) --" is
                        shown at the bottom of the window.

Insert Visual mode      Entered when starting a Visual selection from Insert
                        mode, e.g., by using CTRL-O and then "v", "V" or
                        CTRL-V.  When the Visual selection ends, Vim returns
                        to Insert mode.
                        If the 'showmode' option is on "-- (insert) VISUAL --"
                        is shown at the bottom of the window.

Insert Select mode      Entered when starting Select mode from Insert mode.
                        E.g., by dragging the mouse or <S-Right>.
                        When the Select mode ends, Vim returns to Insert mode.
                        If the 'showmode' option is on "-- (insert) SELECT --"
                        is shown at the bottom of the window.

==============================================================================
6. Switching from mode to mode                          mode-switching

If for any reason you do not know which mode you are in, you can always get
back to Normal mode by typing <Esc> twice.  This doesn't work for Ex mode
though, use ":visual".
You will know you are back in Normal mode when you see the screen flash or
hear the bell after you type <Esc>.  However, when pressing <Esc> after using
CTRL-O in Insert mode you get a beep but you are still in Insert mode, type
<Esc> again.

                                                        i_esc
                TO mode                                             
                Normal  Visual  Select  Insert    Replace   Cmd-line  Ex 
FROM mode                                                                
Normal                  v V ^V    *4     *1        R gR     : / ? !   Q
Visual           *2               ^G     c C        --        :       --
Select           *5     ^O ^G            *6         --        --      --
Insert           <Esc>    --      --              <Insert>    --      --
Replace          <Esc>    --      --    <Insert>              --      --
Command-line     *3       --      --     :start     --                --
Ex               :vi      --      --     --         --        --

-- not possible

*1 Go from Normal mode to Insert mode by giving the command "i", "I", "a",
   "A", "o", "O", "c", "C", "s" or S".
*2 Go from Visual mode to Normal mode by giving a non-movement command, which
   causes the command to be executed, or by hitting <Esc> "v", "V" or "CTRL-V"
   (see v_v), which just stops Visual mode without side effects.
*3 Go from Command-line mode to Normal mode by:
   - Hitting <CR> or <NL>, which causes the entered command to be executed.
   - Deleting the complete line (e.g., with CTRL-U) and giving a final <BS>.
   - Hitting CTRL-C or <Esc>, which quits the command-line without executing
     the command.
   In the last case <Esc> may be the character defined with the 'wildchar'
   option, in which case it will start command-line completion.  You can
   ignore that and type <Esc> again.  {Vi: when hitting <Esc> the command-line
   is executed.  This is unexpected for most people; therefore it was changed
   in Vim.  But when the <Esc> is part of a mapping, the command-line is
   executed.  If you want the Vi behaviour also when typing <Esc>, use ":cmap
   ^V<Esc> ^V^M"}
*4 Go from Normal to Select mode by:
   - use the mouse to select text while 'selectmode' contains "mouse"
   - use a non-printable command to move the cursor while keeping the Shift
     key pressed, and the 'selectmode' option contains "key"
   - use "v", "V" or "CTRL-V" while 'selectmode' contains "cmd"
   - use "gh", "gH" or "g CTRL-H"  g_CTRL-H
*5 Go from Select mode to Normal mode by using a non-printable command to move
   the cursor, without keeping the Shift key pressed.
*6 Go from Select mode to Insert mode by typing a printable character.  The
   selection is deleted and the character is inserted.

If the 'insertmode' option is on, editing a file will start in Insert mode.

        CTRL-\_CTRL-N i_CTRL-\_CTRL-N c_CTRL-\_CTRL-N v_CTRL-\_CTRL-N
Additionally the command CTRL-\ CTRL-N or <C-\><C-N> can be used to go to
Normal mode from any other mode.  This can be used to make sure Vim is in
Normal mode, without causing a beep like <Esc> would.  However, this does not
work in Ex mode.  When used after a command that takes an argument, such as
f or m, the timeout set with 'ttimeoutlen' applies.

        CTRL-\_CTRL-G i_CTRL-\_CTRL-G c_CTRL-\_CTRL-G v_CTRL-\_CTRL-G
The command CTRL-\ CTRL-G or <C-\><C-G> can be used to go to Insert mode when
'insertmode' is set.  Otherwise it goes to Normal mode.  This can be used to
make sure Vim is in the mode indicated by 'insertmode', without knowing in
what mode Vim currently is.

                                    Q mode-Ex Ex-mode Ex EX E501
Q                       Switch to "Ex" mode.  This is a bit like typing ":"
                        commands one after another, except:
                        - You don't have to keep pressing ":".
                        - The screen doesn't get updated after each command.
                        - There is no normal command-line editing.
                        - Mappings and abbreviations are not used.
                        In fact, you are editing the lines with the "standard"
                        line-input editing commands (<Del> or <BS> to erase,
                        CTRL-U to kill the whole line).
                        Vim will enter this mode by default if it's invoked as
                        "ex" on the command-line.
                        Use the ":vi" command :visual to exit "Ex" mode.
                        Note: In older versions of Vim "Q" formatted text,
                        that is now done with gq.  But if you use the
                        vimrc_example.vim script "Q" works like "gq".

                                        gQ
gQ                      Switch to "Ex" mode like with "Q", but really behave
                        like typing ":" commands after another.  All command
                        line editing, completion etc. is available.
                        Use the ":vi" command :visual to exit "Ex" mode.
                        {not in Vi}

==============================================================================
7. The window contents                                  window-contents

In Normal mode and Insert/Replace mode the screen window will show the current
contents of the buffer: What You See Is What You Get.  There are two
exceptions:
- When the 'cpoptions' option contains '$', and the change is within one line,
  the text is not directly deleted, but a '$' is put at the last deleted
  character.
- When inserting text in one window, other windows on the same text are not
  updated until the insert is finished.
{Vi: The screen is not always updated on slow terminals}

Lines longer than the window width will wrap, unless the 'wrap' option is off
(see below).  The 'linebreak' option can be set to wrap at a blank character.

If the window has room after the last line of the buffer, Vim will show '~' in
the first column of the last lines in the window, like this:

        +-----------------------+
        |some line              |
        |last line              |
        |~                      |
        |~                      |
        +-----------------------+

Thus the '~' lines indicate that the end of the buffer was reached.

If the last line in a window doesn't fit, Vim will indicate this with a '@' in
the first column of the last lines in the window, like this:

        +-----------------------+
        |first line             |
        |second line            |
        |@                      |
        |@                      |
        +-----------------------+

Thus the '@' lines indicate that there is a line that doesn't fit in the
window.

When the "lastline" flag is present in the 'display' option, you will not see
'@' characters at the left side of window.  If the last line doesn't fit
completely, only the part that fits is shown, and the last three characters of
the last line are replaced with "@@@", like this:

        +-----------------------+
        |first line             |
        |second line            |
        |a very long line that d|
        |oesn't fit in the wi@@@|
        +-----------------------+

If there is a single line that is too long to fit in the window, this is a
special situation.  Vim will show only part of the line, around where the
cursor is.  There are no special characters shown, so that you can edit all
parts of this line.
{Vi: gives an "internal error" on lines that do not fit in the window}

The '@' occasion in the 'highlight' option can be used to set special
highlighting for the '@' and '~' characters.  This makes it possible to
distinguish them from real characters in the buffer.

The 'showbreak' option contains the string to put in front of wrapped lines.

                                                        wrap-off
If the 'wrap' option is off, long lines will not wrap.  Only the part that
fits on the screen is shown.  If the cursor is moved to a part of the line
that is not shown, the screen is scrolled horizontally.  The advantage of
this method is that columns are shown as they are and lines that cannot fit
on the screen can be edited.  The disadvantage is that you cannot see all the
characters of a line at once.  The 'sidescroll' option can be set to the
minimal number of columns to scroll.  {Vi: has no 'wrap' option}

All normal ASCII characters are displayed directly on the screen.  The <Tab>
is replaced with the number of spaces that it represents.  Other non-printing
characters are replaced with "^{char}", where {char} is the non-printing
character with 64 added.  Thus character 7 (bell) will be shown as "^G".
Characters between 127 and 160 are replaced with "~{char}", where {char} is
the character with 64 subtracted.  These characters occupy more than one
position on the screen.  The cursor can only be positioned on the first one.

If you set the 'number' option, all lines will be preceded with their
number.  Tip: If you don't like wrapping lines to mix with the line numbers,
set the 'showbreak' option to eight spaces:
        ":set showbreak=\ \ \ \ \ \ \ \ "

If you set the 'list' option, <Tab> characters will not be shown as several
spaces, but as "^I".  A '$' will be placed at the end of the line, so you can
find trailing blanks.

In Command-line mode only the command-line itself is shown correctly.  The
display of the buffer contents is updated as soon as you go back to Command
mode.

The last line of the window is used for status and other messages.  The
status messages will only be used if an option is on:

status message                  option       default    Unix default    
current mode                    'showmode'      on          on
command characters              'showcmd'       on          off
cursor position                 'ruler'         off         off

The current mode is "-- INSERT --" or "-- REPLACE --", see 'showmode'.  The
command characters are those that you typed but were not used yet.  {Vi: does
not show the characters you typed or the cursor position}

If you have a slow terminal you can switch off the status messages to speed
up editing:
        :set nosc noru nosm

If there is an error, an error message will be shown for at least one second
(in reverse video).  {Vi: error messages may be overwritten with other
messages before you have a chance to read them}

Some commands show how many lines were affected.  Above which threshold this
happens can be controlled with the 'report' option (default 2).

On the Amiga Vim will run in a CLI window.  The name Vim and the full name of
the current file name will be shown in the title bar.  When the window is
resized, Vim will automatically redraw the window.  You may make the window as
small as you like, but if it gets too small not a single line will fit in it.
Make it at least 40 characters wide to be able to read most messages on the
last line.

On most Unix systems, resizing the window is recognized and handled correctly
by Vim.  {Vi: not ok}

==============================================================================
8. Definitions                                          definitions

  screen                The whole area that Vim uses to work in.  This can be
                        a terminal emulator window.  Also called "the Vim
                        window".
  window                A view on a buffer.

A screen contains one or more windows, separated by status lines and with the
command line at the bottom.

        +-------------------------------+
screen  | window 1      | window 2      |
        |               |               |
        |               |               |
        |= status line =|= status line =|
        | window 3                      |
        |                               |
        |                               |
        |==== status line ==============|
        |command line                   |
        +-------------------------------+

The command line is also used for messages.  It scrolls up the screen when
there is not enough room in the command line.

A difference is made between four types of lines:

  buffer lines          The lines in the buffer.  This is the same as the
                        lines as they are read from/written to a file.  They
                        can be thousands of characters long.
  logical lines         The buffer lines with folding applied.  Buffer lines
                        in a closed fold are changed to a single logical line:
                        "+-- 99 lines folded".  They can be thousands of
                        characters long.
  window lines          The lines displayed in a window: A range of logical
                        lines with wrapping, line breaks, etc.  applied.  They
                        can only be as long as the width of the window allows,
                        longer lines are wrapped or truncated.
  screen lines          The lines of the screen that Vim uses.  Consists of
                        the window lines of all windows, with status lines
                        and the command line added.  They can only be as long
                        as the width of the screen allows.  When the command
                        line gets longer it wraps and lines are scrolled to
                        make room.

buffer lines    logical lines   window lines    screen lines 

1. one          1. one          1. +-- folded   1.  +-- folded
2. two          2. +-- folded   2. five         2.  five
3. three        3. five         3. six          3.  six
4. four         4. six          4. seven        4.  seven
5. five         5. seven                        5.  === status line ===
6. six                                          6.  aaa
7. seven                                        7.  bbb
                                                8.  ccc ccc c
1. aaa          1. aaa          1. aaa          9.  cc
2. bbb          2. bbb          2. bbb          10. ddd
3. ccc ccc ccc  3. ccc ccc ccc  3. ccc ccc c    11. ~ 
4. ddd          4. ddd          4. cc           12. === status line ===
                                5. ddd          13. (command line)
                                6. ~ 

==============================================================================
 vim:tw=78:ts=8:ft=help:norl:

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