I'm using this minimal setup for easy repro:

call plug#begin()
Plug 'nvim-tree/nvim-tree.lua'
lua require('nvim-tree-init')
call plug#end()

Running neovim results in this error upon opening of neovim:

Error detected while processing C:\Users\myUser\AppData\Local\nvim\init.vim:
line    3:
E5108: Error executing lua ...rs\myUser\AppData\Local\nvim/lua/nvim-tree-init.lua:9: module 'nvim-tree' not found:
    no field package.preload['nvim-tree']
    no file '.\nvim-tree.lua'
    no file 'C:\Program Files\Neovim\bin\lua\nvim-tree.lua'
    no file 'C:\Program Files\Neovim\bin\lua\nvim-tree\init.lua'
    no file '.\nvim-tree.dll'
    no file 'C:\Program Files\Neovim\bin\nvim-tree.dll'
    no file 'C:\Program Files\Neovim\bin\loadall.dll'
stack traceback:
    [C]: in function 'require'
    ...rs\myUser\AppData\Local\nvim/lua/nvim-tree-init.lua:9: in main chunk
    [C]: in function 'require'
    [string ":lua"]:1: in main chunk
Press ENTER or type command to continue

This error disappears when lua require line is called after call plug#end() line.

Why does this happen?

For nvim-tree-init.lua, I'm using code from here.

Why am I doing this?

I use config model in which every source plugin is coupled with all of that plugins settings in separate file for each plugin. I don't want lua require(plugin) to be decoupled from all other plugin settings (which are all in plug#begin()-plug#end() block).

  • 3
    I suspect that vim-plug plays with the vim runtime path (rtp) that is only restored after the plug#end() call. Dec 18, 2023 at 12:31

1 Answer 1


This is by design. You can start requiring lua modules only after plug#end() is called where &runtimepath is updated w.r.t. the registered plugins.

vim-plug is not very suited for configuring Lua plugins in a modular way; in many vim plugins configs are expected to sourced before the plugin sources (plugin/*.vim) are executed, but for Lua plugins it's not the case. If you still want to make the plugin declaration and config stay closer, then your option includes:

  1. Defer the execution, e.g.:
  1. Use the autocmd that will be fired when plugin loads:
vim.api.nvim_create_autocmd('User', {
  pattern = 'nvim-tree',
  callback = function()
    -- ... setup

and many more. After all, you may want to use a different plugin manager.

  • 2
    I wanted to stick to vim-plug since I try my best for config to be valid on both vanilla and neovim
    – Fedja
    Jan 19 at 17:28

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