Listed here is "each mode" for vim.

I did not see "search" in the list, but I should think that search (/ or ?) would be a mode on its own.

I have to make a very formal presentation about my internship, and I had some space on my poster, so I decided to put a small section regarding how important text editors are for coders since they are in them so much. Since I learned a lot, as I would look up things at home and occasionally at work regarding how to do something, I decided to put a little about vim. So, this seemingly trivial question is actually fairly important to me currently ... and I wouldn't wan to to mislead anyone :P (despite the fact that no one will care and it is, indeed, extremely trivial).

ps I didn't notice a "search-mode" tag for stackexchange tags below. Does that mean that I have already guess the answer?

... What do you all think? Is search a "true" mode?

2 Answers 2


These few commands that are only available while searching via / / ? with 'incsearch': <c-l>, <c-g>, and <c-t>.

I am not sure 3 commands constitute a mode, but maybe it does. If we look at the documentation it is listed as a command mode mapping and there is no special map variant to make more such mappings, e.g. nmap for normal or xmap for visual. So it maybe more of a battle of semantics.

Note: there maybe more search only mappings/commands, but I can not think of any.

See the following for more help:

:h /_CTRL-L
:h /_CTRL-G
:h /_CTRL-T
  • OK! (1) » I was not aware of these search-... eh whatever mappings! Thank you so very much! (2) » Maybe I just feel like since I am using search a lot, it feels like a mode. I still find myself grasping for straws regarding if this should be considered a mode or not. I suppose it doesn't really matter, but thanks for your input! … AND for your awesome tips!
    – dylnmc
    Commented Jul 26, 2017 at 0:26
  • btw! Presentation was a big hit — although vim was not the center of attention :P
    – dylnmc
    Commented Jul 28, 2017 at 18:22
  • @dylnmc: I am glad. If want and are able you may want to post your presentation on vim's subreddit, r/vim. It would be neat to have more resources to point newer vimmer towards. Commented Jul 28, 2017 at 18:31

help: search-commands returns the stuff I type to execute searches.

Since these are all commands, I always thought of / and ? as commands, used in command mode.

  • OK! Thanks for your two cents! I suppose I won't use it as a mode of its own. It would take up more space than it's worth anyway! Cheers, dylnmc
    – dylnmc
    Commented Jul 26, 2017 at 13:41

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