Vim files for editing Salt files
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Vim files for working on Salt files


Using the Pathogen Plugin Manager

The recommended method is to use Pathogen. Install Pathogen as described here, then do:

cd ~/.vim/bundle && \
git clone

Using the Vundle Plugin Manager

See Vundle.

Manual Method #1:

git clone
cd salt-vim && \
cp -r ftdetect ftplugin syntax  ~/.vim/

Manual Method #2:

Alternately, files can be copied into any other directory where Vim looks for its runtime files, like /etc/vim/. The command :set runtimepath will show all such paths. Read :help runtimepath for more info.

For all installation methods:

You will also need to specify the following settings in your ~/.vimrc:

syntax on
set nocompatible
filetype plugin indent on

Note: It's possible you may be presented with an error stating something similar to:

"E319: Sorry, the command is not available in this version: filetype plugin indent on"

If you get this, specify the following settings in your ~/.vimrc instead:

syntax on
set nocompatible
set tabstop=2
set shiftwidth=2
set expandtab

Too slow?

Note that the default yaml highlighting that ships with vim is very slow with long lines (e.g., ssh keys, or certificates). You might want to switch to a faster yaml highlighter, like vim-yaml.


By default, the syntax file will search for the existence of a Jinja syntax file (as described in the Jinja docs or via a Vim bundle) in the runtimepath, and load that if found. If it is not found, the Django template syntax file (which is slightly different, but bundled with Vim) will be used. You can force using either syntax file using the global variable g:sls_use_jinja_syntax. If it is set, autodetection will be turned off.

Valid values:

Use the Django syntax file.
Use the Jinja syntax file, regardless of whether it exists or not.

Example section of ~/.vimrc:

" Force using the Django template syntax file
let g:sls_use_jinja_syntax = 0


Syntax file for editing YAML + Jinja SLS files.

Filetype plugin with good default config for SLS files. Configures suitable wrapping, folding and indenting. Added features:

  • All tabs are converted to spaces.
  • Tab key indents by 2 spaces.
  • Comments are hardwrapped (with added leading #). This is done by setting formatoptions.
  • <Space> key will try to fold/unfold an area.
  • Visually selected block might be indented and unindented by keys < and >, keeping the visual selection selected.
  • Improved indenting of YAML expressions with custom indenting function.
  • Visual warning for non-ASCII characters (which are not allowed in YAML).
Detect SLS files by the file extension .sls, and Saltfile files by an exact filename match.

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