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Kakoune Edit or Dir

Deprecated in favour of alexherbo2/explore.kak

@alexherbo2's implementation does the same thing but better 💚

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Sometimes, when I use :edit command in Kakoune, I press enter too early. Kakoune complains foo is a directory. I know Kakoune, thank you very much. What if editing directory would show you interactive file browser instead?

GIF time!



Source edit-or-dir.kak from your kakrc or use plug.kak.

For convenience I recommend aliasing :edit-or-dir command to :e. I do not recommend aliasing or overriding built-in :edit command, since it might broke other scripts. Replacing :e alias is fine, scripts should not relay on aliases anyway.

unalias global e edit
alias global e edit-or-dir


edit-or-dir [PATH]

PATH - relative or absolute path to file or directory.
       . means current directory
       .. means parent directory
       If PATH is directory, file browser in temporary buffer *dir* will be opened

When in *dir* buffer you can use following bindings:

  • Return: Open selected files
  • Backspace: Go to parent directory
  • Alt h: Toggle hidden files
  • Escape: Close file browser

You can open multiple files by selecting them with x or other selection method like %sregexReturn

Related plugins


  • 0.1 2018-09-26:
  • 0.2 2018-09-27:
    • FIX Replace basename with substitution, PR #1
  • 0.3 2018-09-28:
    • ADD Hidden files toggle, PR #2
    • ADD New bindings, PR #2
    • ADD EditorConfig for developers
    • FIX Remove new line from end of *dir* buffer
    • FIX Apply changes proposed by ShellCheck
  • 0.4 2018-10-13:
    • ADD support to edit multiple files, PR #4
    • ADD CONTRIBUTING document, PR #4
    • ADD edit-or-dir-{forward,back} internal (hidden) commands, PR #4
    • FIX Fix Typos, improve style and formatting of README, PR #4
    • CHANGE rename edit-or-dir-display-dir (internal command, not breaking), PR #4
    • CHANGE refactoring, PR #4
  • 0.5 2018-11-05:
    • Kakoune v2018.10.27
    • ADD issue template
    • CHANGE switch to directory layout with scripts in rc subdirectory (breaking: update source path in kakrc)
    • FIX remove --group-directories-first flag from ls call (MacOS compatibility)
  • 0.6 2019-06-16:
    • ADD expand ~ in :edit-or-dir #11
    • FIX don't show .. in root PR: #12
    • CHANGE refactoring PR: #11 #12
  • 2020-01-02 DEPRECATED


File browser for Kakoune








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