I am using NERDTree to open files. If I am on a file path in vim and I hit gf this works fine for files. For folders, gf opens a new NERDTree buffer in this folder which is fine. I can then choose a file. I am having a hard time to make this NERDTree buffer disappear again: Hitting :bd as suggested here does not do anything.

Recently, I found out the following: When doing :buffers I can find the number of the buffer that I want to delete. Suppose the NERDTree buffer is 5, I can do then :5bd, and the NERDTree buffer is gone.

This works fine. However, when I try to make it easier by getting the number of the current buffer, from :execute bufnr("%") "bd" <CR>, it does not work.

In that context, I saw that the numbers from :buffer and :echo bufnr("%") are different for these NERDTree buffers.

Did anyone ever encounter this and/or has a solution?

Cheers and many thanks,


  • What is the reason you want to get rid of Nerdtree buffer? Is your objective is to make the file opened via Nerdtree the only file shown in vim screen?
    – tivn
    Commented Sep 17, 2018 at 10:38
  • Hi tivn, the reason I want to get rid of the Nerdtree buffer is that I just do not need it anymore after the operation (opening a specific file) is done. When cycling through the open buffers with :bprevious/:bnext, I usually do not need the Nerdtree buffer to be open all the time.
    – Timmi
    Commented Sep 18, 2018 at 11:22
  • You're not meant to close the NERDTree buffer (or most plugin-created buffers) in that manner. Use :NERDTreeToggle or :NERDTreeClose as @tivn suggested.
    – ZeroKnight
    Commented Sep 19, 2018 at 6:59

1 Answer 1


NERDTree provides two command that basically can be used to make it disappear: :NERDTreeClose and :NERDTreeToggle. Can you try them?

NERDTree buffer is unlisted -- which can be confirmed by indicator u when you type :buffers! . That means it is normally not included in :bprevious and :bnext. So just by making its window disappear using two commands above is sufficient I guess.

  • Hi tivn, many thanks for your suggestion. I tried it and :NERDTreeClose works for the first time, opening the NERDTree buffer as I described. However, when opening again a folder with gf it opens a new NERDTree buffer which I cannot close anymore. This buffer then also prevents me from cyclig through it: I cannot use :bprevious/:bnext to cycle through it. So what you say is sufficient for only opening one folder. Do you have an idea what to do when opening a second NERDTree buffer via gf? Many thanks in advance.
    – Timmi
    Commented Sep 19, 2018 at 14:13
  • @Timmi Sorry, what you said is quite confusing to me. Can you type :buffers! (note the exclamation mark) at the time you are being prevented and then take a screenshot of this?
    – tivn
    Commented Sep 19, 2018 at 17:07
  • Hi @tivn, many thanks for your patience. I did what you suggested and when prevented to cycle through all open buffers, I obtain: timsdata.firewall-gateway.com/index.php/s/NZwSzSMNHbnXwmq (sorry if this is not the correct way to provide the screenshot!) Thesis.html and myfile are files. test is a folder. Do you need any other information? Many thanks in advance!
    – Timmi
    Commented Sep 20, 2018 at 19:20

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