Vi Ref Web

vitutor invokes a tutorial for vi
vi filename enter vi to edit a file

Saving and Exiting

ZZ Quit and save :q! Quit and ignore edit changes
:wq Quit and save :w Save changes and stay in file

Positioning the Cursor in Text

G Go to the last line in the file e End of the current word
nG Go to line number n ( Beginning of the previous sentence
:n Go to line number n ) Beginning of the next sentence
b Back one word { Beginning of the previous paragraph
w Start of next word } Beginning of the next paragraph


H Home-top line on screen ^F Scroll forward one screen
M Middle line on screen 0 (zero) Go to first position on current line
L Last line on screen $ Go to last position on current line
^B Scroll back one screen k Move up one line
^U Scroll back half screen h Move left one character
^ Go to first position on current line j Move down one line
^D Scroll forward half screen l Move right one character

Inserting New Text

i Insert before cursor o Insert one line below cursor
I Insert at beginning of line O Insert one line above cursor
a Appends text after cursor position J Joins current line with following line
A Appends text to end of line Esc Terminate insert mode

Deleting and Copying Text

x Delete single character at current cursor position ndd Delete n lines
dw Delete a word ndw Delete n words
dd Delete a current line Y or yy Copy current line to new location
d0 (zero) Delete back to the beginning of a line p Place last deleted text after cursor
D Delete remainder of line P Place last deleted text before cursor

Changing Text

rx Replace a character with x cw Change word
R Replace beginning at cursor location cc Change line
c0 Change to beginning of line C Change to end of line


/string Search forward for string
?string Search backward for string
:s/old/new/n Search and replace n times

Miscellaneous Commands

:!command Issue UNIX command from within vi . Repeat the last command
:r file Append file into vi u Undo the last command
:f file Change current filename to file z Redraw the screen

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Last Updated: 03/16/2018 14:41:45