I'm trying to use :mkview with 'viewdir'.

I set 'viewdir' as the help page said:

set viewdir='C:/Users/MyPC/vimfiles/view'

and made sure that C:/Users/MyPc/vimfiles/view exists, but I still get error messages when I use :mkview:

E739: Cannot create directory: 'C:/Users/MyPc/vimfiles/view'
E190: Cannot open "'C:/Users/MyPc/vimfiles/view'\~=+vimfiles=+view=+vi=" for writing.

How can I use 'viewdir' with :mkview?

  • 3
    Don't use quotes around the file name. Commented Aug 27, 2021 at 9:24
  • 2
    Please do not post images of text. Instead, please edit and provide the actual content you want to be viewed.
    – D. Ben Knoble
    Commented Aug 27, 2021 at 11:46
  • 1
    Thanks @JürgenKrämer I removed the quotes and it worked
    – Pham Hung
    Commented Aug 28, 2021 at 0:44
  • @PhamHung you should post and accept an informative self-answer to help others who might benefit from your solution. Commented Sep 7, 2021 at 17:18

2 Answers 2


My problem here is caused by my single quote in viewdir

So I removed it and it's ok.


My problem was that set viewdir cannot be a list, like backupdir, directory, undodir all can.

" apply same list pattern as I use for other *dir options
set viewdir^=~/myViewDir/ " fails, because its a string. results in: 
                          " `~/myViewDir/home/user/.vim/view` ... that is,
                          " new path prefixing old path.

" override default with my choice, without fallback
set viewdir=~/myViewDir/ " works

The upside is that viewdir creates its own dir if missing, unlike some of the other options. So a fallback is less important there. (tested on vim9)

  • 2
    ^= concatenates strings in non-list values.
    – D. Ben Knoble
    Commented May 17 at 0:16
  • @D.BenKnoble correct. those vars are all "string", but for backupdir default is ".,~/tmp,~/" and the help text calls it a "List". for viewdir it calls it a "Name".
    – gcb
    Commented May 17 at 1:17
  • Let me be more explicit: :help :set^= says "Multiply the {value} to a number option, or prepend the {value} to a string option. When the option is a comma-separated list, a comma is added, unless the value was empty." So my point was that your inline comment "joins everything if you treat it as a list" is (pedantically) incorrect.
    – D. Ben Knoble
    Commented May 17 at 12:59
  • @D.BenKnoble thanks! A list in vim is an actual list... I try to avoid anything complex in vimscript. since I always saw the list represented as a string, I assumed vim treated strings with commas as list :)
    – gcb
    Commented May 17 at 17:13

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