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amo release github release

Make Firefox/Thunderbird look and behave like Vim

To beginners: Welcome to the Vimperator-labs!
This README isn't written usage and help for the add-on itself. Try :help command after installing add-on for details.

End of Life and Alternatives

Vimperator will stop working in up-to-date copies of Firefox with the release of Firefox 57 on November 14th due to a large breaking change in how extensions and add-ons are written (#705).

It's not all doom and gloom, though! Here are your options (#729):

  • Stay with vimperator, but use an older release of Firefox or a Firefox fork

    • Basilisk, Pale Moon, and Waterfox Classic are community-maintained forks of Firefox that merge security patches and intend to maintain compatibility with XUL/XPCOM add-ons like vimperator. A similar add-on, Pentadactyl, specifically targets Basilisk and Pale Moon and sees more development.
  • Use an add-on compatible with the new webextension API

    • It is not currently possible to match the vimperator feature list in a WebExtension. Some work is being done to rectify this[1][2]
    • cVim (Chrome/Chromium only) - features regex search, commandline with completion, autocmds (via site in the config), custom commands through javascript eval
    • Tridactyl (Firefox only) - aims to eventually match the vimperator experience with working beta versions currently available on AMO
  • Use a less fully-featured add-on compatible with the new WebExtension API

    • These add-ons provide great, configurable, vim-like shortcuts and hints mode
    • By design they do not offer insert or command mode, custom commands, autocmds, vim-style maps and so on
    • Vimium - "The Hacker's Browser. Vimium provides keyboard shortcuts for navigation and control in the spirit of Vim."
    • Saka-key - "Put away your mouse. Saka Key lets you control your browser with keyboard shortcuts."
    • Vim Vixen - "An add-on which allows you to navigate with vim-like bindings."
  • Surrender your other add-ons and use a browser with built-in vim bindings

    • Tabbed
      • Qutebrowser - "A keyboard-driven, vim-like browser based on PyQt5 and Qt."
      • Luakit - "A fast, simple to use micro-browser framework extensible by Lua using the WebKit engine and the GTK+ toolkit."
    • Not tabbed (Use a tabbed window manager or something that supports XEmbed)
      • vimb - "A fast and lightweight vim-like web browser based on the webkit engine and the GTK toolkit."
      • surf - "A simple web browser based on WebKit2/GTK+."
      • uzbl - "A web browser that adheres to the unix philosophy."

Muttator is not affected by these changes.


See also Home page.

Writing efficient user interfaces is the main maxim, here at Vimperator labs. We often follow the Vim way of doing things, but extend its principles when necessary.
Towards this end, we've created the liberator library for Mozilla based applications, to encapsulate as many of these generic principles as possible, and liberate developers from the tedium of reinventing the wheel.

Currently, these applications are using this library:


Vimperator, the flagship project from Vimperator labs, creates a Vim-like Firefox.

Vimperator is a Firefox browser extension with strong inspiration from the Vim text editor, with a mind towards faster and more efficient browsing. It has similar key bindings and you could call it a modal web browser, as key bindings differ according to which mode you are in. For example, it has a special Hint mode, where you can follow links easily with the keyboard only. Also most functionality is available as commands, typing :back will go back within the current page history, just like hitting the back button in the toolbar.


Muttator is to Thunderbird what Vimperator is to Firefox. Combines the best aspects of Vim and Mutt.

Muttator is a free add-on for the Thunderbird mail client, which makes it look and behave like the Vim text editor. It has similar key bindings and you could call it a modal mail client, as key bindings differ according to which mode you are in. For example, it the same keys can select the next message while the message list has focus or can scroll down an existing message when the message preview is selected. It also adds commands for accessing most Thunderbird functionality. E.g., :contact -lastname "Vimperator" will add Vimperator's mailing list to your address book.

Features (Vimperator)

  • Vim-like keybindings (h, j, k, l, gg, G, 0, $, ZZ, etc.)
  • Ex commands (:quit, :open, ...)
  • Tab completion available for all commands with support for 'longest' matching when set in 'wildmode'
  • Extensions! Yes, you can extend Vimperator's functionality with scripts just like you can extend Firefox with extensions
  • Explore JavaScript objects with :echo window and even context-sensitive tab completion
  • Hit-a-hint like navigation of links (start with f to follow a link)
  • Advanced completion of bookmark and history URLs (searching also in title, not only URL)
  • Vim-like statusline with a wget-like progress bar
  • Minimal GUI (easily hide useless menubar and toolbar with :set gui=)
  • Ability to :source JavaScript files, and to use a ~/.vimperatorrc file
  • Easy quick searches (:open foo will search for "foo" in google, :open ebay terminator will search for "terminator" on ebay) with support for Firefox keyword bookmarks and search engines
  • Count supported for many commands (3<C-o> will go back 3 pages)
  • Beep on errors
  • Marks support (ma to set mark 'a' on a webpage, 'a to go there)
  • QuickMarks support (quickly go to previously marked web pages with go{a-zA-Z0-9})
  • :map and :command support (and feedkeys() for script writers)
  • :time support for profiling
  • Move the text cursor and select text with vim keys and a visual mode
  • External editor support
  • Macros to replay key strokes
  • AutoCommands to execute action on certain events
  • A comprehensive :help, explaining all commands, mappings and options
  • Much more...

Installation (Vimperator)

Note that Vimperator doesn't support multi-process aka Electrolysis (e10s), it's necessary to disable e10s to use the add-on.

  • Download signed add-on from (AMO) 1

    1. Enter Add-ons page.
    2. Click Continue to Download button.
    3. Click Add to Firefox button.
  • Download unsigned 2 add-on from (Github)

    1. Enter Releases page.
    2. Click vimperator-3.N.N.xpi link under Downloads topic.
  • Build own version (and signing) See Build own version topic.

1 If the version on AMO is older than the latest release, you can build your own version and use it until AMO release is updated.

2 Since version 48, installing add-on to Firefox has required signing. Unsigned add-on is for Unbranded Builds. See mozilla wiki.

Build own version

Unsigned (for Unbranded Builds)


Signed (for Firefox 48+)

Instructions for building this can be found in vimperator/ See also MDN document ( for details about signing and distribution.

There are necessary four steps to use own version.

  1. Prepare "AMO API key" and "jpm" if first time
  2. Build unsigned add-on
  3. Submit unsigned add-on to AMO
  4. Install signed add-on to Firefox
  5. Addition: Use Command-line interface (CLI) to build and submit

Prepare AMO API key and jpm

  • AMO API key (require Firefox Account)

  • jpm (require node.js):

    npm install -g jpm

Build unsigned add-on

Clone repository and create

git clone
cd vimperator-labs/vimperator

Then edit so that it looks something like:

VERSION       := $(VERSION).$(shell date '+%Y%m%d%H%M%S')
UUID           = vimperator@<uniqueid> # e.g. vimperator@<yourdomain>
AMO_API_KEY    = <your API key> # AKA "Issuer"
AMO_API_SECRET = <your API secret>

Then run:

make xpi

The unsigned XPI should appear in ../downloads/vimperator-3.N.N.yyyymmddhhmmss.xpi.

Submit unsigned add-on to AMO

Have you ever submitted own version to AMO?How to submit
No, I'd like to register own version. Enter How to Distribute this Version, upload the XPI selecting On your own button.
Yes, I'd like to update own version. Enter Manage My Submissions, upload the XPI from your Vimperator's New Version link.

Then the validation starts. Finally, automatically validation XPI finishes, click Sign add-on button to sign.

Install signed add-on to Firefox

Install it via the link in your AMO developer account (find your Vimperator's Manage Status & Versions). The new UUID makes it a new add-on, so don't forget to disable the old version.

Use CLI to build and submit

After once you signed the add-on, you are able to update the add-on using CLI.

cd vimperator-labs/vimperator
make sign


Vimperator is in need of collaborators! Help bring vimperator into the age of e10s!

Please check existing issues for similar issues before opening a new issue. See for details.


Vimperator-labs is released under the MIT license, see License.txt.

Links URL
Home page
Add-ons (Vimperator)
Add-ons (Muttator)
Github repository