A neovim guide

Helping you get started with neovim

Atri Hegde published on
3 min, 513 words

Categories: Post Guide

Tags: Neovim

A neovim guide

This is a guide to get you started using neovim, replacing your IDE. We are gonna be installing neovim on a linux machine, installing plugins and customizing it to our preference.

I am still learning vim, but soon there will be a guide to make vim replace your IDE.

Configuration file

I used to use vim, without any plugins before this and am accustomed to typing vim in the terminal, so I set myself an alias in my bashrc file.

alias vim='nvim'

The configuration file for neovim is located at ~/.config/nvim/init.vim. First let us configure some basic options for neovim. I am going to createe the directory and open init.vim.

mkdir -p ~/.config/nvim
vim ~/.config/nvim/init.vim

My configuration so far:

call plug#begin()
    " Appearance
    Plug 'vim-airline/vim-airline'
    Plug 'ryanoasis/vim-devicons'
    Plug 'folke/tokyonight.nvim', { 'branch': 'main' }
    Plug 'vim-airline/vim-airline-themes'

    " Utilities
    Plug 'sheerun/vim-polyglot'
    Plug 'jiangmiao/auto-pairs'
    Plug 'ap/vim-css-color'
    Plug 'preservim/nerdtree'

    " Completion / linters / formatters
    " Plug 'neoclide/coc.nvim',  {'branch': 'master', 'do': 'yarn install'}
    Plug 'plasticboy/vim-markdown'

    " Git
    Plug 'airblade/vim-gitgutter'
call plug#end() 

These are the plugins I use

  • vim-airline - for the status bars
  • vim-devicons - provides icons
  • tokyonight.vim & vim-airline-themes - themes
  • vim-polygot - language pack for vim
  • auto-pairs - automatically pairs syntax
  • vim-css-color - hex values have colour background
  • nerdtree - tree style file explorer
  • vim-markdown - markdown related features
  • vim-gitgutter - git gutter
" Options
" set background=dark
set clipboard=unnamedplus
set completeopt=noinsert,menuone,noselect
set cursorline
set hidden
set inccommand=split
set mouse=a
set number
set relativenumber
set splitbelow splitright
set title
set ttimeoutlen=0
set wildmenu

" Tabs size
set expandtab
set shiftwidth=2
set tabstop=2

filetype plugin indent on
syntax on

" Italics
let &t_ZH="\e[3m"
let &t_ZR="\e[23m"
  • completeopt - gives more IDE like suggestion menu
  • clipboard - shared clipboard
  • hidden - hides buffers
  • mouse - mouse everywhere
  • number & relativenumber - line numbers enabled, that are relative to current line
  • syntax detection based on filetype

and as such, the rest are self-explanatory. " Italic for better italics support, when italics not working.

" Colours
colorscheme tokyonight
let g:airline_theme='base16_dracula'
let g:airline_powerline_fonts = 1
let g:airline#extensions#tabline#enabled = 1
let g:tokyonight_style = "night"
let g:tokyonight_italic_functions = 1
let g:tokyonight_sidebars = [ "qf", "vista_kind", "terminal", "packer" ]

" Nerdtree
let NERDTreeShowHidden=1
nnoremap <C-n> :NERDTree<CR>
nnoremap <C-t> :NERDTreeToggle<CR>
nnoremap <C-f> :NERDTreeFind<CR>

" Tabs
nnoremap <C-h> :tabprev<CR>
nnoremap <C-l> :tabnext<CR>

Here I have set my colorscheme, configured airlineand added some keybindings for navigating tabs and using NERDTree.

" For markdown
" Disable math tex conceal feature
let g:tex_conceal = ''
let g:vim_markdown_math = 1

" Markdown
let g:vim_markdown_folding_disabled = 1
let g:vim_markdown_frontmatter = 1
let g:vim_markdown_conceal = 0
let g:vim_markdown_fenced_languages = ['tsx=typescriptreact']

These are the markdown plugin settings


I myself am still figuring out a good workflow coming from Jetbrains IDE's. I have been using tabs on vim, by using the :tabnew command to create new tabs, selecting the required file using Nerdtree and switching between tabs using :tabprev and :tabnext.