If I want to change the tab size, I can do that with set tabstop=<number>. I have that in my .vimrc to make it 4 instead of 8.

However, when I indent/deindent text by highlighting it then using >, it still uses the default tab size of 8. How can I make this be 4 too?

1 Answer 1


See :h >:

 >{motion}              Shift {motion} lines one 'shiftwidth' rightwards.
 >>                     Shift [count] lines one 'shiftwidth' rightwards.

So you need to set shiftwidth to affect this:

set shiftwidth=4
" or, to use the value of 'tabstop'
set shiftwidth=0
  • Ok, I see it now, in the documentation for shiftwidth. When shiftwidth is 0, it uses the value for tab stop. All right, thanks a lot.
    – felwithe
    Commented Apr 8, 2018 at 15:31

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