Vim emulation plug-in for IDEs based on the IntelliJ platform.
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IdeaVim is a Vim emulation plug-in for IDEs based on the IntelliJ platform. IdeaVim can be used with IntelliJ IDEA, RubyMine, PyCharm, PhpStorm, WebStorm and AppCode.



Use the IDE's plugin manager to install the latest version of the plugin. Start the IDE normally and enable the Vim emulation using "Tools | VIM Emulator" menu item. At this point you must use Vim keystrokes in all editors.

If you wish to disable the plugin, select the "Tools | VIM Emulator" menu so it is unchecked. At this point IDE will work with it's regular keyboard shortcuts.

Summary of Supported Vim Features


  • Motion keys
  • Deletion/Changing
  • Insert mode commands
  • Marks
  • Registers
  • Undo/redo
  • Visual mode commands
  • Some Ex commands
  • Some :set options
  • Full Vim regexps for search and search/replace
  • Macros
  • Digraphs
  • Command line and search history
  • Vim web help

Not supported (yet):

  • Key mappings
  • Various less used commands
  • Jump lists
  • Window commands

Please see the file index.txt for a list of commands covered with tests.

Changes to the IDE


The IdeaVim plugin uses the undo/redo functionality of the IntelliJ platform, so the behaviour of the u and <C-R> commands may differ from the original Vim. Vim compatibility of undo/redo may be improved in the future releases.


In the IDE, the <Esc> key is used during editing to cancel code completion windows, dialog windows, and parameter tooltips. While in the Vim insert mode, <Esc> is used to return back to the normal mode. If you are typing in the insert mode and a code completion window is popped up, pressing <Esc> cancel the window without exiting the insert mode.

Using <Esc> in dialog windows remains problematic. For most dialog windows the Vim emulator is put into the insert mode without the possibility to switch to the normal mode. In some dialog windows the normal mode is on by default. The usage of the Vim emulator in dialog windows is an area for improvements.

Menu Changes

In order to emulate the keystrokes used by Vim, several of the default hotkeys used by the IDE had to be changed. Below is a list of IDE menus, their default keyboard shortcuts, and their new VIM keystrokes.

     Save All                 Ctrl-S              :w

     Undo                     Ctrl-Z              u
     Redo                     Ctrl-Shift-Z        Ctrl-R
     Cut                      Ctrl-X              "+x
     Copy                     Ctrl-C              "+y
     Paste                    Ctrl-V              "+P
     Select All               Ctrl-A              ggVG

     Find                     Ctrl-F              /
     Replace                  Ctrl-R              :s
     Find Next                F3                  n
     Find Previous            Shift-F3            N

     Quick JavaDoc            Ctrl-Q              K
     Parameter Info           Ctrl-P              Ctrl-Shift-P
     Swap Panels              Ctrl-U              <None>
     Recent Files...          Ctrl-E              <None>
     Type Hierarchy           Ctrl-H              Ctrl-Alt-Shift-H

     Class...                 Ctrl-N              Alt-Shift-N
     Line...                  Ctrl-G              G
     Declaration              Ctrl-B              gd
     Super Method             Ctrl-U              Ctrl-Shift-U

     Override Methods...      Ctrl-O              Ctrl-Shift-O
     Implement Methods...     Ctrl-I              Ctrl-Shift-I
     Complete Code                                (Only in Insert mode)
          Basic               Ctrl-Space          Ctrl-Space or Ctrl-N or Ctrl-P
          Smart Type          Ctrl-Shift-Space    Ctrl-Shift-Space
          Class Name          Ctrl-Alt-Space      Ctrl-Alt-Space
     Insert Live Template     Ctrl-J              Ctrl-]

     Version Control
          Check In Project    Ctrl-K              <None>


Development Environment

  1. Fork IdeaVim on GitHub and clone the repository on your local machine.

  2. Open the project in IntelliJ IDEA 11+ (Community or Ultimate) using "File | Open... | /path/to/ideavim".

  3. Set up a JDK if you haven't got it yet. Use "File | Project Structure | SDKs | Add new JDK".

  4. Set up an IntelliJ plugin SDK using "File | Project Structure | SDKs | Add new IntelliJ IDEA Plugin SDK". The correct path to your current installation of IntelliJ will be suggested automatically. You will be prompted to select a JDK for your plugin SDK. Select the JDK from the previous step. You should name your plugin SDK IntelliJ Plugin SDK in order to match the name in the project settings stored in the Git repository.

  5. Select a project SDK for your project using "File | Project Structure | Project | Project SDK". Choose the plugin SDK you have created at the previous step.

  6. Build IdeaVim and run IntelliJ with IdeaVim enabled using the "IdeaVim" run configuration (use "Run | Run... | IdeaVim").

  7. In order to be able to run tests in your IntelliJ edition uncomment the appropriate lines in the constructor of the VimTestCase class.


See for a list of authors and contributors.


IdeaVim is licensed under the terms of the GNU Public license version 2.