Now you can take simple notes directly from your favourite editor.
Install manually by copying
simplenote.vim into your plugin folder or use the
mk_vimball.sh to generate a vimball to install.
if using Pathogen:
git clone https://github.com/mrtazz/simplenote.vim.git ~/.vim/bundle/simplenote.vim
Note for both manual and Pathogen installs you will then need to run
git submodule update --init
But it's easier to use a plugin manager:
Add Plugin 'mrtazz/simplenote.vim' to .vimrc Run :PluginInstall
Add NeoBundle 'mrtazz/simplenote.vim' to .vimrc Run :NeoBundleInstall
Add Plug 'mrtazz/simplenote.vim' to .vimrc Run :PlugInstall
Your credentials can be stored in your
let g:SimplenoteUsername = "your simplenote username" let g:SimplenotePassword = "your simplenote password"
If you don't want to have the credentials in your
vimrc (if you manage it with
git for example), you can just set the variables in a different file (like
~/.simplenoterc) and source it with
source ~/.simplenoterc in your
Alternatively, if you don't set these global variables then Simplenote.vim will prompt you for a username and password when you start using it.
By default all notes are treated as plain text. If you usually write all of your
notes in some other format (like markdown or restructured text) you can set
g:SimplenoteFiletype to the preferred vim filetype.
The plugin provides several commands to interact with your Simplenote account. In order to retrieve a list of your notes execute one of the following:
:SimplenoteList :SimplenoteList todo,shopping
The first option returns all notes, the second option shows passing a comma
separated list of tags; this will only list notes which have at least one of
those tags. This opens a new scratch buffer with a line-wise listing of your
let g:SimplenoteListSize=X set, the scratch buffer will come up X
lines tall. Alternatively when
let g:SimplenoteVertical=1 is set, it is
opened as a vertical rather than horizontal split window and
g:SimplenoteListSize=X sets the width of the list index. You can then
navigate through the with the arrow keys and enter a note on hitting
If you want to refresh the list index just run
:SimplenoteList again. With
version 2.1 an in-memory cache is used to speed up subsequent updates of the
list index. With 2.2 this is extended so any call to
updates an on-disk cache so startup is also fast (the very first load before
you have a cache can still be slow if you have a lot of notes). Also
see Single Window Mode.
Now that you see the content of the note, you can interact with this specific note:
updates the content of the current note with the content of the current buffer.
It will use Simplenote's merge functionality to merge in any remote changes that
have been made as well. The buffer write command
:w is also mapped to update
the current note, but you can still use
:w <file> and
:saveas <file> to
write out a not locally.
To display the current version and note key/ID of a note use:
If you want to retrieve a specific version of a note use:
where X is an integer version number. To restore that version of a note you
would just use
:Simplenote -u. To get back to the most recent version of a
Therefore you can also use
:Simplenote -v when no local changes have been made
to pull in the most recent changes from the remote note. To delete the note,
This moves the current note to the trash. If you want to completely delete a note, use
as it will directly delete the note and not only move it to the trash. There also exists a command to create new notes.
creates a new note with the contents of the current buffer. Once the note is
:Simplenote -u updates the newly created note, also with the contents
of the current buffer.
Tagging notes is also supported. If you enter
on a buffer containing a valid note, you get an input dialog, prefilled with
existing comma-separated tags for the note, which you can then edit. Tags have
to be comma separated and hitting
Enter will then update the note with the new
Notes can be pinned with
on a buffer containing a valid note. Likewise a note can be unpinned with
on a buffer containing a valid note.
There is also an option to open notes directly from a given key:
While this is not very useful in everyday usage, it can be used very effectively to create shortcuts to notes you use often. Example:
" add :Todo command command Todo SimplenoteOpen <yourtodonotekey>
Now you can jump to your todo note directly with
:Todo in vim.
simplenote.vim supports simple note ordering. Per default the sort order is
pinned notes first followed by modified date from newest to oldest. The order
can be changed by setting the
g:SimplenoteSortOrder variable. It should be set
to a comma separated list of values which represents the sort order. Allowed
pinned (pinned before unpinned),
tags (notes with tags before
createdate (both newer before
The format of the note titles in the list are configurable using the
Various formatting tags are supporting for dynamically building the title string. Each of these formatting tags supports a width specifier (decimal) and a left justification (-) like that supported by printf.
%F -- flags, always two characters ('*'=pinned, 'm'=markdown) %T -- tags %D -- date %N -- note title %> -- right justify the rest of the title
%N -- entire note title %50N -- note title, max width of 50 characters and right justified %-50N -- note title, max width of 50 characters and left justified
The default title format is
The format of the date string is also configurable using the
g:SimplenoteStrftime option. The default strftime is
"%a, %d %b %Y %H:%M:%S".
+conceal feature is enabled in vim then syntax highlighting is
supported for the Simplenote note list. The highlight groups supported are:
SN_NoteFlags note flags ('%F' format) SN_NoteDate last updated date of the note ('%D' format) SN_NoteTags tags assigned to the note ('%T' format) SN_NoteAgeDay note title - less than a day old ('%N' format) SN_NoteAgeWeek note title - less than a week old ('%N' format) SN_NoteAgeMonth note title - less than a month old ('%N' format) SN_NoteAgeYear note title - less than a year old ('%N' format) SN_NoteAgeAncient note title - ancient ('%N' format)
Single Window Mode
By default simplenote.vim will open notes in new windows. If you would prefer
simplenote.vim to emulate the behaviour of the Simplenote website and native
applications then set
g:SimplenoteSingleWindow (to anything) in your
and simplenote.vim will try as much as possible to re-use one window for
opening all notes. Note: due to the way Vim handles and numbers windows, this
behaviour can't be perfect and if you manually open a window between the note
index and the first note opened then this new window will be targetted for
Version 2 of the SimpleNote API relies heavily on JSON. As JSON and VimL don't really play nice together, basic parts of this plugin are implemented in python. Therefore your vim has to be compiled with python 2.7+ or 3.2+ support in order to use this plugin.
Usage behind proxy
Since the plugin uses Python's urllib2 for making HTTP requests, you just have
to add these lines (with the correct values) to your
let $HTTP_PROXY = 'http://<proxyuser>:<proxypassword>@<proxyurl>:<proxyport>' let $HTTPS_PROXY = 'http://<proxyuser>:<proxypassword>@<proxyurl>:<proxyport>'
Special issue concerning GFW
For Chinese mainland users, since the authentication service of simplenote is hosted
on appspot, a VPN connection has to be configured to use
simplenote.vim. The configurations of a VPN connection is surely beyond the scope of
this doc. But if you have done that, you can add a shell alias or script
proxychains to ease the invoking of simplenote.vim
# as for zsh alias simplenote="proxychains -q vim -c 'Simplenote -l'"