· December 2012 ·

Vim & Tmux & System Clipboard

So you use terminal vim, and you use tmux, and you want everything you yank, delete, or cut to go to your system clipboard, and you want to be able to paste code you copy from the internet. Here's what you do in 5 easy steps (assuming you're on OSX and have homebrew):

  • since the version of vim that comes with OSX does not support using the system clipboard, we'll use mvim instead. This command will also alias vim, vi, view, vimdiff, etc. (credit to @smlstvnh):
    brew install macvim --override-system-vim && brew linkapps

  • and we'll use this handy plugin to get tmux to play nice with the system clipboard:
    brew install reattach-to-user-namespace

  • tell vim to use the system clipboard:

    • in .vimrc: set clipboard=unnamed
  • tell tmux to use the system clipboard:

    • in .tmux.conf: set-option -g default-command "reattach-to-user-namespace -l bash"

View this and other helpful system configurations here

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7 Responses


brew install macvim now

over 1 year ago ·

thanks! updating

over 1 year ago ·

brew install macvim --override-system-vim && brew linkapps

This will alias vim, vi, view, vimdiff, etc.

To see all commands aliased, you might try ls -l /usr/local/bin | grep macvim

over 1 year ago ·

thanks @smlstvnh, updated!

over 1 year ago ·

Awesome! Automatically sending to tmux when I yank from vim is something I had been looking for, it totally worked. Thanks.

over 1 year ago ·
57miveqr normal

is there an equivalent package in apt-get ?

6 months ago ·

@louisgmoore so sorry for the delayed response! there was something funky going on with coderwall and it wouldn't let me comment, but now I can :).

From a quick search it looks like you might have some luck with xclip or xsel, but I haven't tested it myself.

about 2 months ago ·
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