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SCVim (> 3.5)

A vim plugin for supercollider.

This is based of the original scvim by Alex Norman (see:


  • Syntax Highlighting
  • A faked REPL via the terminal
  • Code Navigation (jump to definitions) via a global tags file "~/.sctags"
  • Auto-Completion of known words via tag completion
  • Launch the SuperCollider QT Help System


It is highly recommended to use pathogen ( to keep your .vim paths clean. See the supplied helpfile how to setup pathogen if you haven't used it before.

Make sure the folder is named 'scvim' and drop it into your "bundle" folder, e.g. "~/.vim/bundle/scvim".

Or just do: git clone git:// ~/.vim/bundle/scvim

Symlink somewhere, where SuperCollider can find it. On a mac that would be:

ln -s ~/.vim/bundle/scvim/sc/ ~/Library/Application\ Support/SuperCollider/Extensions/

And on a common supercollider debian/ubuntu installation:

ln -s ~/.vim/bundle/scvim/sc/ /usr/share/SuperCollider/Extensions/ `

Make sure you are using QT as your main GUI by adding GUI.qt; to you startup.scd file.

The rest should work automatically for mac users.

In Linux and other unix systems the vim variable g:sclangTerm should be set in your .vimrc file to let the plugin know which terminal application should it use for launching sclang. Please, read on the next section for more details.

Also, if Ruby is not installed on your linux system, install it with:

sudo apt-get install ruby or sudo yum install ruby

Plugin configuration:

ENV variables:

Path to the tags file export SCVIM_TAGFILE=/your/path this defaults to "~/.sctags"

Configurable VIM variables:

The following variables are available for configuration in your .vimrc file:

  • g:sclangTerm: Command to open a terminal window. Defaults to "open -a" on OSX, and "x-terminal-emulator -e $SHELL -ic" on Linux. On some Linux systems this value may need to changed.
  • g:sclangPipeApp: Absolute path to the plugin start_pipe script. Defaults to "~/.vim/bundle/scvim/bin/start_pipe". Change it if you have installed the plugin in other location.
  • g:sclangDispatcher: Absolute path to the plugin sc_dispatcher script. Defaults to "~/.vim/bundle/scvim/bin/sc_dispatcher". Change it if you have installed the plugin in other location.

Example .vimrc line for gnome-terminal users:

let g:sclangTerm = "gnome-terminal -x $SHELL -ic"

If for some reason vim can't find the path to the two launch scripts start_pipe and sc_dispatcher you can set them manually in your .vimrc:

let g:sclangPipeApp     = "~/.vim/bundle/scvim/bin/start_pipe"
let g:sclangDispatcher  = "~/.vim/bundle/scvim/bin/sc_dispatcher"

Using it:

To start open a file with the right extension :e Enter :SClangStart and a terminal should open with a running sclang session.

See the commands reference for general usage.

ctags support:

run :SCTags from vim or SCVim.generateTagsFile() from sclang

This gives you a couple of things:

  • You can jump to any known class or method
  • You get tags completion with ctrl-x ctrl-] (use the vim supertab plugin if this is too bothersome to type)


  • :SClangStart launch sclang
  • :SClangRecompile recompile
  • :SClangKill what it says

Key commands:

in normal mode:

  • <leader>sk recompiles the sc library
  • K on a word opens the corresponding helpfile inside the supercollider help
  • ^] jumps to a tagfile (this works for classes only so far but will be extended)

in normal/insert mode:

  • F5 to execute a block of code scvim will attempt to find the outermost bracket
  • F6 to execute the current line of code
  • F12 is a hard stop

This program is free software: you can redistribute it and/or modify it under the terms of the GNU General Public License as published by the Free Software Foundation, either version 3 of the License, or (at your option) any later version.

This program is distributed in the hope that it will be useful, but WITHOUT ANY WARRANTY; without even the implied warranty of MERCHANTABILITY or FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE. See the GNU General Public License for more details.

You should have received a copy of the GNU General Public License along with this program. If not, see