Is there any way to show non-printable characters by default, for all windows, buffers, tabs, opened inside Vim (including man pages, netrw buffers, etc.)?

Additionally I also like to see the non-printable characters for all the buffers. And here goes my _vimrc lines for that:

    scriptencoding utf-8
    set listchars+=space:·
    set listchars=eol:¶,tab:» ,trail:~,extends:>,precedes:<,space:·
    set list 

And again, this is working for all the file buffers. As soon as I open up a manual page or netrw directory listing or NERDTree buffer, I have to run :se list for each buffer.

Can anybody help me or at least give me some hint to get this setting done?

1 Answer 1


You can get 'list' on all the windows by using the following:

augroup setList
   au BufWinEnter *  set list
augroup END

The (long) explanation of why it doesn't work only by setting it on the vimrc can be found at :help local-options.

  • Thanks for showing me the light...now i can understand...how to use au...and how implement as well....
    – Cylian
    Feb 11, 2016 at 19:00
  • @Cylian Glad I could help :)
    – mMontu
    Feb 11, 2016 at 19:06

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