Unfortunately nnoremap ab gd: doesn't work on my machine.

When I hit ab, the gd: remap selects the words under the cursor as gd (or gD) should do but it doesn't enter into command mode after as : usually does. If I type the sequence gd: orgD: directly in neovim, it works fine and enters into command mode after selecting the words under the cursor.

When I replace gd with gg, nnoremap ab gg: works fine. It moves to the beginning and enters command mode. Any ideas why gg: works while gd: doesn't?

My goal is to make a map such as:

nnoremap gR gD:%s/<C-R>///gc<left><left><left>

for global search and replace

I am using:

$ vim --version

NVIM v0.2.2
Build type: RelWithDebInfo
LuaJIT 2.0.4
Compilation: /usr/bin/x86_64-linux-gnu-gcc -g -O2 -fPIE -fstack-protector-    strong -Wformat -Werror=format-security -Wdate-time -D_FORTIFY_SOURCE=2 -DDISABLE_LOG -Wdate-time -D_FORTIFY_SOURCE=2 -Wconversion -U_FORTIFY_SOURCE -D_FORTIFY_SOURCE=1 -DNVIM_UNIBI_HAS_VAR_FROM -O2 -g -DMIN_LOG_LEVEL=3 -Og -g -Wall -Wextra -pedantic -Wno-unused-parameter -Wstrict-prototypes -std=gnu99 -Wvla -fstack-protector-strong -fdiagnostics-color=auto -DINCLUDE_GENERATED_DECLARATIONS -D_GNU_SOURCE -I/build/neovim-HJnLxJ/neovim-0.2.2/build/config -I/build/neovim-HJnLxJ/neovim-0.2.2/src -I/usr/include -I/usr/include -I/usr/include -I/usr/include -I/usr/include -I/usr/include -I/usr/include -I/build/neovim-HJnLxJ/neovim-0.2.2/build/src/nvim/auto     -I/build/neovim-HJnLxJ/neovim-0.2.2/build/include
Compiled by [email protected]

Features: +acl +iconv +jemalloc +tui 
See ":help feature-compile"

   system vimrc file: "$VIM/sysinit.vim"
  fall-back for $VIM: "/usr/share/nvim"

Run :checkhealth for more info

My full plugin free ~/.config/nvim/init.vim looks like this (where ab doesn't work and ba does work):

set guicursor=
nnoremap ab gD:
nnoremap ba gg:


nnoremap ab gD:

gD means 'go to definition'. This fails when this command is executed at the defintion itself. It works only when: the selected word is not the first occurence.

A simple workaround is to use a search with * instead of 'go to definition' nnoremap ab *:. search and replace would then be:

nnoremap gR *:%s/<C-R>///gc<left><left><left>

1 Answer 1


Not sure what's going wrong with your map. It works for me (but I don't use Neovim).

However, rather than relying the side effects of gd or * (that they set the search register "/), you could instead insert the word into the search command more directly:

nnoremap gR :%s/\V\<<C-R><C-W>\>//gc<left><left><left>

N.B. I'm using very-nomagic \V in the regular expression for consistency with your original command, gd.

This utilises the command-line editing command Ctrl-RCtrl-W, which inserts the word currently under the cursor into the command-line. (See :help c_CTRL-R_CTRL-W)

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