slimv in a container
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  • slimv (Superior Lisp Interaction Mode for Vim) with sbcl (common lisp interpreter) and tmux (terminal multiplexer) in a Docker container


  • setting up slimv the first time took me a few hours and that could be an impediment to someone attempting to use slimv so i wanted to remove the impediment for first time slimv users


  • you need to have docker installed

    • it is a pretty easy installation

    • instructions for ubuntu:

    • there are also instructions for fedora, debian, centos, etc.

    • you'll probably want to follow the instructions referenced by "Continue to Linux postinstall to allow non-privileged users to run Docker commands and for other optional configuration steps."

  • then i would create an alias in your .bashrc like this

    • if you want to use the image straight from the docker hub registry:
   alias vv='docker run --rm -it -v `pwd`:/mnt justin2004/slimv_box'
  • or if you build the image yourself
   alias vv='docker run --rm -it -v `pwd`:/mnt slimv_box'
  • replacing "slimv_box" with the tag name you used
  • cd to the directory where you have some common lisp source files you want to edit

  • run "vv"

    • the first time you do this it will need to download the image from docker hub
  • now you should be in the container and vim should be running inside tmux

  • either create a new file ":e newfile.lisp" or open an existing one ":e oldfile.lisp"

  • press ,c to start swank

  • TODO reference slimv tutorial


  • only files in the /mnt directory (in the container) are saved when you leave vim!

  • don't run vv from within an existing tmux session or else you'll end up with an embedded tmux session

  • you'll need to know how to use:

    • vim
    • tmux
    • common lisp
    • docker (well you just need docker ce installed and your user account needs to be in the docker group)
  • TODO maybe i should add gvim and/or xterm support so that the slimv menu is visible and clickable because i bet some users would prefer the GUI-ish approach to slimv