Top 5 Reasons to use the vi/vim editor

1
by on July 12, 2012 at 4:24 pm

It is debatable as to what the ‘best’ editor is in Unix/Linux world.  I’m not going to attempt to answer that here, as it’s very subjective and besides the point.  What I will do is outline the top 5 reasons that you should use vi, or at least familiarize yourself with it’s commands and basic usage.

1:

It’s free!

2:

Commands are quick and intuitive.  After you’ve acquainted yourself with the commands, the built in functionality covers just about any task you can complete with a mouse.

3:

Color syntax highlighting.  If your terminal supports color, integrated syntax highlighting makes reading and editing scripts a much easier proposition.

4:

You never have to leave your terminal.  Most servers and production systems are located in a cold room with funny lighting, somewhere far away.  If you’re working from a non-free operating system (GASP!), there’s nothing more annoying than having to upload the same file several times while you’re trying to tweak a setting.  If you posses vi skills, you’ve already made your changes, saved the new file, and restarted your application, all before your mouse can even find the locally saved file!

5:

It’s a ubiquitous application.  It’s available on just about any *nix machine you’re likely to find in production today.  If you work on or in a mixed OS environment, then you know it’s not very often your tools are so portable.  Learn vi, and you’re covered for just about any appliance you can ssh into!

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  • KurrKurrentent

    I agree. I use vim on my Ubuntu server and it is by far the easiest to use for me. Here are some tips for Ubuntu.
    Launch it
    sudo vim [file]
    Close it without saving
    [Esc]
    [Shift] : q!
    [Enter]
    Save after editing
    [Esc]
    [Shift] : w
    [Enter]

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