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Intro ~~~~~ These are my personal settings. I have found them useful for general editing and for working with PHP files specifically. You are free to use them, but remember that you can and should change them according to your standards or liking. All the settings and functions in .vimrc and .vim/ directory are commented and hopefully contain enough info to explain what is going on. If you are in doubt, put your cursor on a command or an option name, do: :help <Ctrl-R><Ctrl-W> and hit <Enter>. This will pull up help for the topic that's under the cursor. Installation ~~~~~~~~~~~~ The .vimrc and .vim/ directory should be usable as-is, if you copy them into your home directory. However, since you are likely to have some customization settings already, I would advise looking through the contents of the files I provide and copying only the portions you want. The files in .vim/plugin/ can be copied directly (make sure to copy additional plugin files that may be in .vim/doc/ and .vim/after/ directories). Some plugins have accompanying documentation. To include it into VIM's help system, issue this command: :helptags ~/.vim/doc After this you can pull up help for a plugin by doing: :help <file> Where <file> is the name of the file in the .vim/doc/ directory. You can also get :help on specific commands. PHP highlighting ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ I have specific tastes for PHP highlighting which are expressed in .vim/after/syntax/php.vim. Delete the file or change it to your liking. PHP indentation ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ I do not particularly like the way VIM's built-in PHP indenting works, so I turn it off in .vim/after/indent/php.vim and use C-style indenting instead. If you wish to use PHP-style indenting, comment out those lines. Exuberant Ctags ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Download Exuberant Ctags from http://ctags.sourceforge.net/. After you compile and install it, edit .vim/ftplugin/php.vim, find the line with "ctags" and change the executable name to point to you particular file path (if you name it something else). Also, edit .vim/after/plugin/general.vim and change the Tlist_Ctags_Cmd value as well. You can use <F4> key to re-build the tags file from inside vim. Make sure to save your current file before invoking <F4> so that ctags picks up any new identifiers you may have added. The mapping will start the scan from the directory of the file you are editing and process all the files from that point recursively. The actual tags file is created in the same directory as the file you are editing. Exuberant Ctags currently treats class methods as simple functions. This affects a couple of areas, including completion. For example, if you have: $foo = new Foo(); $foo-><Ctrl-X><Ctrl-O> The popup window will contain all the functions from the tags file as well as all the methods of built-in PHP objects. Hopefully, ctags will fix this soon. Until then, I find it helpful to reduce the list by removing the built-in object methods. You can do this by uncommenting indicated lines in .vim/after/ftplugin/php.vim. Plugins ~~~~~~~ This distribution bundles a few plugins that I have found useful. NERD_tree.vim matchit.vim oscan.vim (0scan) project.vim snippetsEmu.vim taglist.vim command-t.vim You can read more about them on this site: http://vim.sourceforge.net/scripts/ Note that I bind <Ctrl-B> as the expansion key for snippets. You can change this in .vim/after/plugin/general.vim. Xdebugger ~~~~~~~~~ The xdebug support inside VIM is provided via plugin by Seung Woo Shin. In order to use it, your VIM needs to have +python feature (run vim --version to see whether it is present). The files are in xdebugger/ directory. In your php.ini file these settings need to be present: xdebug.remote_enable = On xdebug.remote_host = localhost ; host or IP name of the machine running VIM xdebug.remote_port = 9000 ; port on which debugger.py is listening xdebug.remote_mode = "req" ; connect on request start xdebug.remote_handler = "DBGp" See this article for some additional info: http://2bits.com/articles/using-vim-and-xdebug-dbgp-for-debugging-drupal-or-any-php-application.html I made some slight modifications to the scripts. The trace window was taking up space, so it is turned off. If there is an exception condition from debugger.py, it will not be shown. If you do want trace window, search for every place where 'tracewin' is used in debugger.py and uncomment those lines. The debugger control keys are remapped to start with <Leader>, which should be backslash (\) by default. So, instead of hitting <F5>, you need to to hit \<F5>. This is done because a lot of other plugins map function keys to their commands. Feel free to change these mappings if you want to. I would advise placing the debugger scripts in ~/.vim/xdebugger directory, so that they are not loaded for every vim session. Instead load it explicitly with: vim -c ":source $HOME/.vim/xdebugger/debugger.vim" After that you can do: :e /path/to/my/file.php and start debugging.