Is there a way to enter into vim in insert mode, for example doing something like:

$ vim -c "startinsert"

I'm using an Automator (applescript) and I'd like to be able to click the icon to open vim without the "Vim...Bram Moolenaar" message everytime. Basically, be able to open vim and press "i" but without having to actually press i.

  • Well, you can make the startup message disappear. Is something with the command given not working? Applescript might be outside of the realm of things here, but I can try to find a decent starting point
    – D. Ben Knoble
    May 24, 2020 at 23:35
  • @D.BenKnoble I suppose as some sort of hack, just start vim and then entering a space and then deleting it, if it can't be started directly in insert mode (to remove that startup message).
    – David542
    May 24, 2020 at 23:38
  • No, there’s a setting that controls the messages. Again, does using vim +startinsert not work??
    – D. Ben Knoble
    May 24, 2020 at 23:39
  • @D.BenKnoble -- it looks like this: gyazo.com/01d0df4e81fc66c6daae94df7258f692. Doesn't look like anything's happening when I run that.
    – David542
    May 24, 2020 at 23:43
  • @David542 is it possible you are in insert mode, just airline is wrong? try to start typing qqqq and see what happens
    – Mass
    May 25, 2020 at 0:19

1 Answer 1


You may have an interfering plugin. To be sure, most plugins do not expect vim to start in insert mode (although many won't care either).

By default,

vim +startinsert

does almost what you expect. It starts insert mode, but does not clear the intro message. To also prevent the intro message, use shortmess:

vim +'set shm+=I' +startinsert

Sometimes, a plugin will prevent this from working. A work-around which might help is to use the VimEnter autocmd:

vim +'au VimEnter * startinsert'

Also, if you are looking to turn vim into a modeless editor, there is the option

set insertmode

although this has a much wider effect than just starting in insert mode.

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