I've been using the command mode for making replacements in a file. Something like :%s/foo/bar/g and to make a series of replacements:

:%s/i/1/g | :%s/j/2/g | :%s/k/3/g | :%s/l/4/g | ...

This line exists in the command history but I was curious if these commands can be pulled from a file with contents like:


If this is a possibility, it will be easy to have several replacement combinations in different files. Thanks for your thoughts and comments.

1 Answer 1


Yes. You can store the list of Ex commands to a file and then use the :source command to execute the commands in the file.

By convention, you would save the commands to a file using the *.vim extension. That will also get Vim to help you with proper syntax highlighting, automatic indentation, etc. for the vim filetype.

If you store the file under the ~/.vim directory (or some other location listed in 'runtimepath'), then you can also use the :runtime command to execute it. (It's essentially the same as :source, but you don't need to specify the full path to your runtime directory.)

If you currently have the list of commands you want to save into a script in the command history, you might want to use the q: normal mode command to open a window with the command-line history, so you can copy the commands from there and paste them into a buffer where you can edit, rearrange them and save them into a *.vim file.

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