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Vim plugin for insert mode completion of words in adjacent tmux panes


If you're using Vim in tandem with Tmux you might be familiar with this pesky situation:

You're happily editing your lovely files in Vim, when you notice you need to type a word that you can see in a different Tmux pane right next to Vim. This might be some secret key found in your REPL or the name of a failing test.

Usually the interesting text is too short to warrant switching panes and going into Tmux' copy mode, so you end typing it out again.

But fear no longer!

This plugin adds a completion function that puts all words visible in your Tmux panes right under your fingertips. Just enter insert mode, start typing any word you see and press <C-X><C-U> to the trigger user defined insert mode completion.

It also completes words that are scrolled off, hidden in background tmux windows and even different tmux sessions. And it even works from gvim or MacVim!

Third party integration

Tmux complete is automatically integrated with the following plugins:

  • asyncomplete

    To see tmux completions in your asyncomplete pop-up you will need the async plugin as well:

    Plug 'prabirshrestha/async.vim'
    Plug 'prabirshrestha/asyncomplete.vim'
    Plug 'wellle/tmux-complete.vim'

    This integration comes with sensible defaults, but you have some options to fine tune it. To start put a block like this into your vimrc:

    let g:tmuxcomplete#asyncomplete_source_options = {
                \ 'name':      'tmuxcomplete',
                \ 'whitelist': ['*'],
                \ 'config': {
                \     'splitmode':      'words',
                \     'filter_prefix':   1,
                \     'show_incomplete': 1,
                \     'sort_candidates': 0,
                \     'scrollback':      0,
                \     'truncate':        0
                \     }
                \ }

    With name you can change how it appears in the pop-up. whitelist makes it possible to enable this integration only for certain filetypes.

    The splitmode can be words, lines, ilines, or linies,words. ilines stands for "inner line", starting with a word character (ignoring special chararcters in front) and ilines,words completes both lines and words.

    If filter_prefix is enabled, we will filter candidates based on the entered text, this usually gives faster results. For fuzzy matching this should be disabled.

    If there you are using many tmux windows with a lot of text in it, completion can be slow. That's why we start showing candidates as soon as they come in. If you prefer to only see candidates once the list is complete, you can disable this by setting show_incomplete.

    sort_candidates controls whether we sort candidates from tmux externally. If it's enabled we can't get early incomplete results. If you have show_incomplete disabled, this might get slightly quicker results and potentially better sorted completions.

    If scrollback is positive we will consider that many lines in each tmux pane's history for completion.

    If 'truncate' is positive, then only prefixes of the matches up to this length are shown in the completion pop-up. Upon selection the full match is completed of course.

  • coc

    You can see tmux completions right in your coc pop-up.

  • ncm2

    You can see tmux completions right in your ncm2 pop-up.

  • neocomplete

    You can see tmux completions right in your neocomplete pop-up.

  • neocomplcache

    You can see tmux completions right in your neocomplcache pop-up.

  • deoplete

    You can see tmux completions right in your deoplete pop-up.

  • unite

    You can use tmux complete as a unite source:

    Unite tmuxcomplete       " opens a menu containing words from adjacent tmux windows
    Unite tmuxcomplete/lines " opens a menu containing words from adjacent tmux windows and lines where they were found
  • nvim-compe

    You can use tmux complete as a compe source:

    let g:compe.source.tmux = v:true


Use your favorite plugin manager.

  • Vim-plug

    Plug 'wellle/tmux-complete.vim'
  • NeoBundle

    NeoBundle 'wellle/tmux-complete.vim'
  • Vundle

    Bundle 'wellle/tmux-complete.vim'
  • Pathogen

    git clone git:// ~/.vim/bundle/tmux-complete.vim


Use the #trigger option to tune the way you interact with tmux-complete by putting one of these lines into your .vimrc:

  • By default, tmux-complete sets Vim's completefunc, that can be invoked with <C-X><C-U>.

    let g:tmuxcomplete#trigger = 'completefunc'
  • Alternatively, you can use Vim's omnifunc, that can be invoked with <C-X><C-O>. This setting also integrates with YouCompleteMe so you can see Tmux completions when hitting <C-Space>.

    let g:tmuxcomplete#trigger = 'omnifunc'
  • If you're using the neocomplete, neocomplcache or deoplete integration, you probably don't need the additional trigger.

    let g:tmuxcomplete#trigger = ''

The trigger function itself is named tmuxcomplete#complete (in case you want to call it manually).