The complete guide for using vim editor (recommended for beginners)

August 5, 2022

Before using Vim Editor, you must know how it works. Vim is an excellent text editor, especially for programmers, coders, and system administrators. It allows you to edit files in multiple windows, which is convenient for editors and programmers. In this guide, you will learn how to use Vim's main modes and learn the most commonly used commands.

The Basics of Using the Vim Editor

vim editor

The Vim editor is a free screen-based text editor. It is an improved version of Bill Joy's vi editors. Vim was created by Bram Moolenaar, who took inspiration from the Stevie editor and released it for public use in 1991. The editor includes several useful features, including visual and command modes. It also supports Backslash and Text objects. This article will cover the basics of using the editor and how to switch between these modes.

Command mode

When editing text in the vim editor, you may use command mode to move from line to line or insert or remove text. While in command mode, the arrow keys will be used to navigate. To enter the line-wise visual mode, you should press v or ctrl-v. Then, simply type i to insert text in the line. By default, command mode allows you to use the arrow keys to navigate within the editor.

When you first open a vim document, it will be in COMMAND mode. You should spend the majority of your time in command mode. The arrow keys are not functional while in INSERT mode. You can also use the 'e' command to open or save different files. This will open a file in the current directory or create a new one if needed. While this mode will be your primary navigation mode, it will be useful for many users.

Another way to use command mode is to replace words or lines. To do this, first, type a colon and then a letter. Then, type the new text in any length. Then, press Esc to exit command mode. You will notice that the cursor moves to the new position. Using command mode, you can replace words and lines with the help of command keys. Just remember to replace the characters correctly.

Visual mode

The first step to using the Vim editor in visual mode is to start the Vim console and type "v" (for visual). Then press a key to enter Visual mode and continue typing. There are other ways to enter Visual mode as well. Using a mouse will open the "mouse" option, which lets you enter the 'n' or 'a' character. Using these shortcuts will save you a lot of time!

When you're in visual mode, you can perform a wide range of operations on the text. The highlight follows your cursor's position. This means that you can insert multiple blocks at once or append text to a single line. Another option is to use o or k to expand a block of text. These two keys share many operations with their normal counterparts. The only difference is the location of the cursor.

When you're working in visual mode, you'll be able to highlight specific text, such as a single word or phrase. Visually identified text can be deleted, changed, and rearranged with other Vim editing commands. You'll also be able to yank, put, and delete highlighted text. While you're in Visual mode, you'll have access to the same help as when working in normal mode.


The backslash is a metacharacter that replaces special characters with standard ones. It has a special meaning in search patterns, so you should place it inside brackets. In vim, you can use the backslash in two different positions. The following command searches for two consecutive backslashes and replaces them with hyphens. Once you have the right backslash, you can begin searching your code.

You can also use this character to filter a line. The / command searches down the file. The n commands repeat the search. The backslash is also required before certain characters, such as "/one" and "/two".

Another useful feature of the vim editor is the ability to place "mark" characters in the text. It can insert up to 26 marks, and they're completely invisible. Once you use a mark, you move your cursor to the beginning of the marked column. It is especially useful when working on two parts of a file simultaneously. It's also useful when you need to jump to the beginning of a function.

The backslash in vim editor is represented by "" and the double backslash is represented by ''. The backslash is only useful if you have cpoptions without the 'B' flag. In vim, using the backslash is equivalent to entering command mode. You can start an insert mode by typing "g" or '#' in a search string.

Text objects

The Vim editor has several useful features for coders, including creating, modifying, and deleting text objects. Text objects are well-defined objects that represent different parts of a document. Vim offers many text-object operations, such as deleting words or changing the insides of a code block or string. There are two types of text objects: the visual text object, which allows you to change the entire object, and the inner text object, which provides motion for an operator.

Vim's text objects give you unprecedented precision. Editing by motions is slow, tedious, and often clumsy. For instance, changing a misspelled character one by one is a time-consuming and tedious task. Vim's text object conventions make using these tools intuitive and efficient. Once you've learned how to use them, they become muscle memory. And they're easy to use.

Another useful feature of the Vim editor is its ability to display the entire contents of a document. This function is often called 'visual mode', and comes in handy when editing text. Vim supports three versions of visual mode: block mode, character mode, and line mode. Replace mode allows you to replace a particular character with another one. To enter replace mode, enter normal mode, and then place your cursor on the first character of the text you're replacing.


A text object is a structured piece of text. These objects in a document domain model include words, sentences, paragraphs, blocks, and (HTML) tags. Vim provides building blocks to create various text objects. When used with operators, these objects can be powerful and simple. The following are a few common examples. Let's take a look at a few common text object operations. We'll cover each of these in turn.

ctp stands for change till p. This means that you should delete everything up to the letter p. Other examples of text objects include 3dk, which moves the cursor to the left four positions, k to move it upward by one line, and U, which returns the last line to its original state. Those are just a few examples of common text object commands that can make your life easier in Vim.

Another way to customize Vim is to look for other people's dotfiles. These can be found on GitHub and can be useful for customizing the editor. You can also ask instructors for their own configs or read blog posts on customization. Just make sure to read them and apply what you want. This will save you a lot of time in the long run. This article covers some of the most common custom Vim editor objects.


There are numerous Vim editor plugins. Gitgutter is a popular plugin that allows you to jump between changed lines in a single block. Another useful vim plugin is vtreeexplorer, which acts as a tree-based file explorer. It keeps track of file status and avoids buffer duplication. Plugins like netrw also make using vim easier, as it replaces the default status line with a colorful, lively one.

A vim plugin manager is a handy tool for installing plugins. Plugins are stored in a directory dedicated to each plugin. These directories are added to the runtime path of the vim editor. Some of them also have examples to show you how to list their sources. If you aren't sure how to install a plugin, look at the GitHub page. These plugins are organized in different folders.

If you're looking for new ways to extend the functionality of Vim, consider installing a plugin. These extensions can add new features, speed up your workflow, or make your editor more useful. These add-ons can be downloaded for free on GitHub and enable Vim to work like a full-blown IDE. A vast community of developers and users create plugins for Vim. Some of them are published on GitHub and managed by plugin managers.

Vim Features for Beginners

Vim is a mighty text editor that allows users to create and modify files in various formats quickly. This section will show you how to use Vim to write code, format documents, and much more.

The Command Line Interface (CLI)

Vim is a command line interface (CLI) where you type commands into the terminal window instead of using menus and icons. You can also add plugins to extend Vim's functionality.

Searching with: grep

If you're looking for something specific, use the: grep command. It searches through files and returns only those lines that match our needs.

Editing Text with Visual Mode

To enter visual mode, press v. You'll see a cursor appear at the beginning of the line. Press i to insert text after the cursor—Press Esc to exit visual mode.

5 Things You Didn't Know About The Vim Editor

Vim is an advanced text editor allowing users to edit multiple files simultaneously. Its features include syntax highlighting, automatic indentation, and line numbering.

Vim Is Not Just For Linux Users Anymore.

Vim is not just for Linux users anymore; several versions of Vim are now available for Windows, Mac OS X, and even iOS devices. It means that more people are using Vim as a text editor.

Vim Has A Built In Web Server.

If you use Vim, you probably know how powerful it is. It has an incredible set of features and is easy to learn. However, there are some things you might not know about Vim. One of them is that it comes with its web server.

You can use Vim To Create Websites.

Vim is a text editor designed initially to replace vi (the original version of Unix). It's been around since the early 1980s, and it's still used by millions of people today. It's also mighty, and it's often used to create websites.

Vim Is An IDE Too.

Vim is an Integrated Development Environment (IDE) too. That means it has all the features of a modern IDE, such as syntax highlighting, code completion, and debugging tools. In addition, it supports multiple languages, so you can use it to write Python, Ruby, PHP, JavaScript, HTML, CSS, XML, SQL, and more.

Vim Is Free Software.

Vim is free software, meaning anyone can download and install it. However, it isn't open source, and this means that you cannot modify the source code yourself. Instead, you must contact the developers directly to request changes.

5 Ways To Improve Your Vim Skills

You might be wondering how to improve your Vim skills. You should first know that this editor has many features and functions. Getting the most out of it, however, requires some time. Here are five ways to improve your Vim skills. Hopefully, this section will help you to improve your vim skills. But remember, not all of these methods will work for everyone. Depending on your experience level, some may take a bit longer to learn.

Learn the Basics

If you're new to using Vim, there's no need to worry. You can learn the basics by reading through our tutorial. Once you've mastered the basics, you can start customizing your settings.

Master the Command Line Interface.

There are two main parts to learning how to use Vim effectively: learning the commands and learning the shortcuts. Learning the commands will help you navigate the file system, edit text, search for files, and more. Learning the shortcuts will allow you to perform common tasks quickly and efficiently.

Know Your Text Editor's Keybindings.

Once you've learned the basics, you should look at what other people do with Vim. You can learn a lot by watching others work. If you're interested in seeing some examples, check out our list of top 50 Vim tips.

Customize Your Environment.

There's no one right way to use Vim, so there's no right environment. However, there are some things you can customize to make your life easier.

Practice Regularly.

If you're going to spend any significant amount of time using Vim, you should practice regularly. It's easy to forget how to do something after not using it for a while.

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