In Part 1 we learnt about buffers and how to move between them and how to view all buffers as windows in VIM.
Here is a recap of the terms buffers, windows, and tabs.
- A buffer is the in-memory text of the file that was opened using vim. It may be visible or hidden. It is identified by a buffer number and has flags to indicate whether it is current, has been modified or not etc.
- A window is a viewport on a buffer whereas
- A tab is a collection of windows
Let’s look at a couple ways of dividing the screen to windows showing same of different files for editing in VIM.
vim -o file1 file2 file3 will open the 3 files in windows laid out horizontally. If you was the screen split into vertical windows then use
vim -O file1 file2 file3
One could also use the command
:new to open a blank window or
:new file4 to open file4 in a new window that split the screen horizontally or
:vnew file4 to split the current screen vertically
Go ahead and try it now. Play with the two ways of creating windows.
CTRL-W c to close the window where the cursor is positioned.
Moving to a different window is as simples as using
One can also convert all existing windows to tabs using
Explore what happens when you start vim with multiple filenames as argument but no -o or -O switch. Check buffers using
:ls and see if you can covert the buffers to windows and then to tabs.