I've been using tmux for a while, and recently tried :term in Neovim for a few days.

Aside from some small trivial differences, it seems mostly the same to me? What is the advantage of using :term? What can I do with it that I can't do with tmux.

1 Answer 1


This is obviously an opiniated question. Here's my opinion.

Advantages of neovim (or Vim) terminal:

  • Normal mode gives the power of Vim inside a terminal window
  • Can use vimscript to customize mappings and commands

Advantages of tmux:

  • Allows persistent sessions
    • IMHO this is the most important aspect of tmux, because:
    • It allows to detach a session, then leave the computer, log on from a different computer and continue the session from where we left it
    • It also helps when working through bad network connections, since one may always reconnect to the tmux session if the network connection is lost
  • Fits better into a workflow where Vim is only one of many useful tools. I often use tmux even if I don't work with text editing at all.
  • I agree with you but, about the normal mode in vim terminal, it's not as useful as a normal buffer because you can't edit text and you're not able to move the cursor. All mappings are not available in terminal, like autocompletion or <C-o>. Anyway, I know there is no absolute answer. Thanks for your opinion.
    – Dougui
    Commented Dec 21, 2017 at 20:08

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