I regularly press q to exit the -- more -- prompt in Vim.

I often mistakenly use this same key to exit the hit-enter prompt, which then starts recording a macro after a subsequent key is typed.

I'd like to map q to <cr> when the hit-enter prompt is shown.

I unsuccessfully tried the following mapping:

noremap <expr> q mode() ==# 'r' ? "\<cr>" : 'q'

However, mode() cannot be used in this context to check for the hit-enter prompt. As mentioned in the documentation, in most uses outside of 'statusline' and remote_expr, mode() "always returns c or n."

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    From :help mode(): "This is useful in the 'statusline' option or when used with remote_expr(). In most other places it always returns c or n." – filbranden May 6 at 1:38
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    @filbranden, Thanks! I've updated the post to reflect this. – dannyadam May 6 at 2:01
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    The issue is not due to mode(); it can be used in an <expr> mapping. The issue is that mappings are ignored. From :h pager: Note: The typed key is directly obtained from the terminal, it is not mapped and typeahead is ignored. Slightly related issue. – user938271 May 6 at 16:13
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    @user938271, for the mapping I'm interested in, mode() would ideally return r for detecting the hit-enter prompt. However, I've verified that within the <expr> mapping, at the hit-enter prompt, mode() is returning n, as opposed to r. Additionally, I've verified that mappings are not ignored at the hit-enter prompt. For example, with the mapping :noremap q :qall!<cr>, vim exits when pressing q at the hit-enter prompt. – dannyadam May 6 at 19:35
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    @user938271, it appears that mappings are ignored for the -- more -- prompt, but the mapping I've attempted is for the hit-enter prompt. – dannyadam May 6 at 19:42

It's a hack, but you could try this:

augroup hit_enter_prompt | au!
    if has('nvim')
        au CmdlineLeave : call s:hit_enter_prompt_no_recording()
        au CmdlineLeave : call timer_start(0, {-> s:hit_enter_prompt_no_recording()})
augroup END
fu s:hit_enter_prompt_no_recording() abort
    if has('nvim')
        nno q <c-\><c-n>
        return timer_start(0, {-> execute('nunmap q', 'silent!')})
    if mode() isnot# 'r' | return | endif
    nno <expr> q execute('nunmap q', 'silent!')[-1]
    if exists('##SafeState')
        au SafeState * ++once sil! nunmap q
        let q = {}
        let q.timer = timer_start(10, {-> mode() isnot# 'r' && q.nunmap()}, {'repeat': -1})
        fu q.nunmap() abort
            call timer_stop(self.timer)
            sil! nunmap q
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