I'm needing to add 184 to multiple (but not all) columns in Vim editor. The following command only adds 184 to the very first column, even if the second or the third column is the only highlighted column in visual block mode, only the first column gets added onto. I can't use /g at the end cause there's numbers that I can't add to in each line as well

:s/\d\+/\=submatch(0) + 184
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2 Answers 2


<c-a> can be used in Visual Block mode e.g. <c-v>.

Lets say you have the following text:

1 2 3
1 2 3

You can select the 2nd column with f2<c-v>j then add your number via 184<c-a>

Then you will have:

1 186 3
1 186 3

There are other methods as well. However, I tend to favor shelling out to use awk. The following command will add 184 to the 2nd column:

awk '$2+=184' input.txt

You can do this from Vim with a range and the filter command, !. Select you lines visually then run :!awk '$2+=184'

For more help see:

:h v_CTRL-A
:h :!
:h :range

If you prefer to stay in Vim you can do:


Vim is very much line oriented. The range '<,'> specify that the substitution should only occur in the line selected.

But the \%V only match (with zero width) if the next character is within the selection.

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