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Vim notes

How to set up vim

There are two config files: one for vim, otherone for nvim

  • vim: ~/.vimrc
  • nvim: ~/.config/nvim/init.vim

I cannot find at this point a config file for vim O.o So, I will just create a .vimrc under my home:

Now, given that I have installed in my computer vim and nvim, the way that the configuration files interact, seems that nvim takes prevalence.

So, all the changes I made in the ~/.vimrc are not going to be stablished unless I source the vimrc in the init.vim

As an example, this is the way my init.vim looks like:

" =============================
" Source vimrc
" ============================
source ~/.vimrc

" =============================
" Plugins
" =============================
call plug#begin()
 Plug 'JuliaEditorSupport/julia-vim'
 Plug 'kdheepak/JuliaFormatter.vim'
 Plug 'jpalardy/vim-slime'
 Plug 'neoclide/coc.nvim', {'branch': 'release'}
 Plug 'morhetz/gruvbox'
call plug#end()

" =============================
" VIM Slime
" =============================
let g:slime_target = "neovim"

Creating and modifying the vimrc

vim ~/.vimrc

Settings for vim

First I'm going to edit the vimrc file. One trick to try the configurations that I want, is that if I'm working on vim I can go to normal mode and try for example :set relative number and that will include the modification for that vim session.

Customizing vim (plugins)

Plugins are for this. Different from the settings that are things that comes already with vim, the plugins are made for this.

To use plugins, we need a plugin manager. One of the most used ones is the vim-plug

In order to use plugins (after installing the vim-plug) our .vimrc file should contain a section that starts and finish with this:

call plug#begin('~/.vim/plugged')

call plug#end()

Now, if we want to install a plugin, we should write in the middle of those two calls the plugin. Save and then run


And that's it. It will download and install the files needed. As an example, to change a color scheme we can do:

call plug#begin('~/.vim/plugged')
Plug 'gruvbox-community/gruvbox'
call plug#end()

After the installation, we can set:

:colorscheme gruvbox

If I want to know the pluggins installed, and given that we are using the vim-plug we can check the pluggins in use with:


Working with vim and git

Is kind of bothering to exit vim in order to commit changes in the git repository, so a way to do it is to use the bang :! to execute shell commands.

:!git status
:!git commit -m "Ref #2 my changes done"
:!git push

Here we can use the % to indicate current file:

:!git add %
:!git checkout %

To be honest, its easier to open a new window with tmux and execute all terminal commands from there than from the vim session. It's less tipying.


When changing the .vimrc file


Section with some of the errors that I have faced and followed steps to solve them.

.coc nodejs not executable

When opening a vim session, always this message will pop-up:

"node" is not executable, checkout

To install nodejs and avoid this problem, I did:

curl -fsSL | sudo -E bash -
sudo apt-get install -y nodejs

rf not starting R session

Given that the rf is not working when opening a R file, one of the solutions is to indicate the R path in the .vimrc file, so I included it

let R_path = '~/R/x86_64-pc-linux-gnu-library/4.2'

Nonetheless, it's still not working.

New start

So, given that my configuration wasn't working who knows why, I just commented all the .vimrc file and start over again checking what worked and what no.

After commenting my .vimrc, I reloaded it. I opened a vim_test.R file, hit \rf and it worked!

Now that it worked, I went through the .vimrc and start uncommenting some of the things that I thought would not affect again nvim-r. The final file looks like this one:

" No compatibility with vi to avoid problems
"set nocompatible

" Source vimrc file if specific project have one
"set exrc

" Cursor as a block
set guicursor=

" Use relative numbers in files
set relativenumber

" Line where I'm positioned is the real line number
set nu

" Avoid leaving highligth after a search is done
"set nohlsearch

" No saving or keeping buffer in the background
set hidden

" Indentetation configuration
set tabstop=4 softtabstop=4
set shiftwidth=4
set expandtab
set smartindent

" Start scrolling until 8 spaces away
set scrolloff=8

" Create extra column
set signcolumn=yes

" Mark 80 characters line
set colorcolumn=80

" Enable type file detection
"filetype on

" Enable plugins and load plugins for the detected filetype
"filetype plugin on

" Load an indent file for the detected file type
"filetype indent on

" Set the leader key
"let mapleader=" "

" Set encoding
"set encoding=utf-8

" Plugins
" gruvbox to change color schema
" powerline to obtain bar in bottom with git/project status
call plug#begin()
"Plug 'gruvbox-community/gruvbox'
Plug 'jalvesaq/Nvim-R'     " To work with vim and R
Plug 'preservim/nerdtree'  " View the files
Plug 'ncm2/ncm2'           " Auto-complete R commands
Plug 'gaalcaras/ncm-R'     " Auto complete R commands
call plug#end()

" NERDTree configuration test
nnoremap <C-n> :NERDTree<CR>

" Set the R path for plugin nvim-r
"let R_path = '~/R/x86_64-pc-linux-gnu-library/4.2'

vim workflow for R projects

Ok, I don't want to spend more time on this configuration thing. So I started using vim to work on my R project just to feel the main pains when switching from RStudio. Along the way, if there is too much pain because of lack of some sort of functionality that I was too attached to it, I will change the .vimrc file to try to relieve some pain.

\rf Connect to R Console

\rq Quit R Console

\d Run current line and move to the next line

\l Run current line, but cursor will stay on the same line.

\pp Run paragraph. But cursor will stay on the same block.

\pd Runs block and move to the next one

\ss Execute a block of selected code. This has to be done with visual mode

\aa Run entire script

\ro Open the "Global Environment"

ctrl + w + l Jump to left panel

ctrl + w + h Jump to right panel

If I made a change on the ~/.vimrc file, I can source it with :source ~/.vimcr

If I have installed the pluggin NERDTree, I need to remap some keys. At the moment I have in my ~/.vimrc file the line: nnoremap <C-n> :NERDTree<CR>, so I don't have to do :NERDTree to open the file browser. Now this can be done with:

ctrl + n Open file browser on left side by default.

Inside the file tree browser, I can move with the arrows. To expand one folder and show contents, I can hit ENTER. Doing the same in an open folder, will close it.

To move out from the NERDTree browser I can ctrl + w + w so I will be jumping panels from left to right.


Plugin repos


Sites that can be useful:

Using NerdTree

When I have a nvim session open, I can open a NerdTree panel with:


Once I have to or panels open, I can move between them with Ctrl + w

If I'm browsing the files, and I want to open them, this can be useful:

enter = open the file in the current window
s = open file in vertical split window
i = open file in horizontal split window