Consider editing the code

foo = long_function_name(var_one, var_two, var_three, var_four)

where the textwidth 'column' occurs just after var_two.

I would like to be able to press gqq on the line and it get formatted to:

foo = long_function_name(var_one, var_two, 
                         var_three, var_four)

Currently it does this:

foo = long_function_name(var_one, var_two, 
    var_three, var_four)

How can this be done?

1 Answer 1


Assuming you are editing a file recognized by Vim as source code and therefore Vim's more sophisticated indenting is enabled1 (check with :set cindent?) you can just do this:

:set cinoptions=(0

With :set textwidth=50 I get this formatting of your example line:

foo = long_function_name(var_one, var_two,
                         var_three, var_four)

cinoptions allows you to tune how Vim indents various code constructs.

The (N option is described, in part, in :h cino-( thusly...

(N    ... When N is 0 or the unclosed parentheses
      is the first non-white character in its line, line up with the
      next non-white character after the unclosed parentheses.

But for this particular case the help for WN (:h cino-W) actually has a (counter) example that is more in line with your case:

WN    When in unclosed parentheses and N is non-zero and either
      using "(0" or "u0" ...

    cino=(0                         cino=(0,W4
      a_long_line(                    a_long_line(
                  argument,               argument,
                  argument);              argument);
      a_short_line(argument,          a_short_line(argument,
                   argument);                      argument);

We want it to look like the example on the left so cinoptions=(0.

Take a look at :h cinoptions-values for heaps of other ways to tune the indentation.

1 This doesn't apply to all languages. See the comments/chat for discussion about Python files having nocindent by default.

  • This doesn't work for me but I may be missing something. I have :set cindent? returning cindent and :set cinoptions? returning cinoptions=(0. Is there something else I am missing to get it to work?
    – rwolst
    Apr 10, 2018 at 12:28
  • What do you see when you use gqq after setting this?
    – B Layer
    Apr 10, 2018 at 12:30
  • 1
    I don't use Python so not quite sure why but Vim doesn't set cindent automatically when I open a .py file...Okay, I found this: stackoverflow.com/questions/16570737/… See if that helps you.
    – B Layer
    Apr 10, 2018 at 12:47
  • 1
    Thanks for the help, I found a Python fix if I run setlocal cino=(0. I would be really interested in what is going on that means I have to use this. This thread is relevant but I don't completely understand it vim.1045645.n5.nabble.com/….
    – rwolst
    Apr 10, 2018 at 12:52
  • 1
    Oh, you know, since indentation/formatting matters in Python maybe they figured having a lot of customizability isn't a good default configuration.
    – B Layer
    Apr 10, 2018 at 13:00

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