Questions tagged [regular-expression]

Regular expressions (often shortened to "regex") are expressions written in a declarative language used for matching patterns within strings.

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How to make regex matchers non-greedy?

I am trying to use a regex for replacing text in a file (replace a full url with just protocol/domain/): :%s/\(https\?:\/\/.*?\/\).*/\1/gc Unfortunately .*? does not match the string, even trying to ...
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54 votes
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Find and replace using regular expressions

I have a file with a bunch of user defaults in. I want to change some of the text, but I'm struggling coming up with a matcher and replacer. Using the following example: ##############################...
squarefrog's user avatar
34 votes
1 answer
12k views

Can I search for a Unicode combining character in Vim?

I have a file with the character ã (lowercase a + combining tilde). Encoding and fileencoding are both utf-8. ga shows <a> 97, hex 61, octal 141 <~> 771, Hex 0303, Octal 1403 (but ...
cxw's user avatar
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31 votes
2 answers
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Is lookaround possible in vim's regex system?

I have encountered many situations in vim where it would be useful to have lookaround statements. I have tried using the standard lookaround syntax ((?=), (?!) etc ..), but it appears vim does not ...
EvergreenTree's user avatar
26 votes
0 answers
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How does `\zs` interact with syntax matches?

Consider the text: foobarbaz First we highlight the regular expression /foobar/: :syntax match Special /foobar/ Next we highlight the regular expression /foobarbaz/: :syntax match Error /foobarbaz/ ...
Rich's user avatar
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23 votes
2 answers
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Regex in Vi: How does one use character classes inside groups? (e.g. [\s\w])

In Vim, the character class \s matches any whitespace character. When I'm using those special characters in groups e.g. [\s\w] it does not match any single whitespace or word character, it does match ...
JHK's user avatar
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20 votes
1 answer
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Deleting a range of n lines before and after a matched line?

I have a repetitive configuration file and I'd like to match a regex and delete a range of lines before, and after a match. I'd also like delete the match in one command. I can use... :g/match/-1d ...
leeand00's user avatar
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20 votes
1 answer
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Are Vim's regex magics compatible with well-known regex classes?

Many Unix tools' regular expression syntaxes are often the POSIX-codified Basic and Extended Regular Expressions (BRE and ERE, respectively), and, in some modern implementations, Perl-style (PCRE ...
muru's user avatar
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19 votes
5 answers
7k views

Vim syntax pattern to highlight python keyword argument

I'm struggling with learning vim regexps (I don't know any other regexp very well either), so the main problem is to define regexp that would match some_function_call(simple_value, keyword=value) ...
user1685095's user avatar
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19 votes
1 answer
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Why doesn't Vim regex allow more than 9 capture groups?

From :h E65 we can see that Vim doesn't allow more than 9 capture groups in a substitution command. For example the following command will work: s/\v(a)(b)(c)(d)(e)(f)(g)(h)(i)/\9\8\7\6\5\4\3\2\1 ...
statox's user avatar
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18 votes
4 answers
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What is the rationale for \r and \n meaning different things in s command?

We all know that, when searching, \n is newline and \r is carriage return (^M), but when replacing \r is newline while \n is a null byte (^@). What is the origin of this asymmetry? Given that this ...
Matteo Italia's user avatar
18 votes
2 answers
854 views

Is there a way to convert a Vim regex literal to different magic modes?

If I have a magic Vim regex in a string literal, is there a way to convert the whole regex into an alternative representation that uses a different magic mode, so I could paste that equivalent regex ...
Mu Mind's user avatar
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17 votes
3 answers
1k views

Ignore URLs and email addresses in spell file

Is there a way to have vim not flag HTTP URLs and email addresses as spelling errors? Or, more generally, a way to list regexes of valid spellings?
noffle's user avatar
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16 votes
1 answer
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Folding by regex search pattern

I got a plain text file with whitespace separated columns of values. Like this: AU 3030 .... ... .... AU 3031 .... ... .... AU 3032 .... ... .... AU 3033 .... ... .... IT 48100 ... .. ..... IT ...
guido's user avatar
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15 votes
3 answers
3k views

What's the difference between the '\zs' and '\@<=' atoms in Vim regex?

This is what I get from the documentation: \zs "starts the highlighted part" after matching the preceding regex, and \@<= "starts the highlighted part" after matching the ...
Luke Davis's user avatar
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15 votes
2 answers
509 views

How can I run :substitute on only part of the line and not all of it?

I have a line like this one: function my_function(argument, another argument, but there are spaces) I want to substitute the space characters (inside the argument's names) with underscore. I thus ...
Feffe's user avatar
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14 votes
11 answers
16k views

Substitute second occurence on line

I have a list of files: ./a.temp.txt ./a.temp.txt ./a/b.temp.txt ./a/b.temp.txt ./a/b/c.temp.txt ./a/b/c.temp.txt And I want to remove the temp. on each line, but only the second occurence, ...
nobe4's user avatar
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14 votes
2 answers
5k views

How to search literally without any regex pattern?

Does vim allow for searching raw strings? If what I want to search is in the variable string, does the following code work? call search('\V' . escape(string, '\')) Or are there other more direct ...
doraemon's user avatar
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13 votes
8 answers
10k views

How to replace a pair of brackets

I have a file, containing some lines like this: aaa bbb (ccc) ddd. Now I want to replace the pair of brackets by a pair of square brackets to make this line become aaa bbb [ccc] ddd. I think that \...
Yves's user avatar
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13 votes
1 answer
2k views

Apply normal mode command to regex matches

I am using the following regular expression to match a documentation string underneath a Clojure function definition: \vdefn.*\n\s*\zs"([^"]|\n)*" Is there a way to run the normal mode gq (format ...
user avatar
13 votes
1 answer
3k views

Sort based on comma separated words

Normal command :sort can sort lines based on column or virtual column (\%c or \%v), could the higher level logical column be used as sorting key? Using regular expression looks a little complex for ...
Thomson's user avatar
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12 votes
2 answers
42k views

Regex to match any character including newline

I frequently find myself trying to do transformations like author = {{foo bar}}, to author = {foo bar}, and I can't find a regex to match the part in ...
oarfish's user avatar
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12 votes
1 answer
34k views

Search for lines starting with given string in Vim?

I have this code snippet: # import ipdb; ipdb.set_trace() def foo(): ... import ipdb; ipdb.set_trace() ... # import ipdb; ipdb.set_trace() How should I specify search query, that it ...
niekas's user avatar
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12 votes
1 answer
4k views

Usage of the =~ operator

I'm a little confused on VimScript's regex comparison operators. If I look through :h =~? my understanding is that =~ can be used to do a regex match (with the ? making it case-insensitive). But ...
Jonathan.Brink's user avatar
11 votes
6 answers
2k views

Delete n lines skip 1 line script

I want to create a basic Vim script that simply deletes n lines, skips 1 line and repeats until the end of the document. I don't care about specific matches, I just want to delete the line. For ...
Max Copley's user avatar
11 votes
5 answers
5k views

How to replace content between two patterns from the file?

I've the following format of the file: <common> fitnes=0 genetic=1 method=0 </common> <inputs> foo=bar bar=foo </inputs> <limits> balance=200.00 </limits> and I ...
kenorb's user avatar
  • 18k
11 votes
1 answer
2k views

What is '\%' and '\@' token's name in vim regex? And what does it do?

While editing syntax file, I found something like: \s*\%(\%(:\@<!\/\/.*\)\=\|\%(\/\*.*\*\/\s*\)*\)$ I'm familiar with any other than \% and \@ there. I can't even googling because I don't know ...
Mas Bagol's user avatar
  • 517
10 votes
3 answers
346 views

Alternative to escape slashes in search and replace for long strings

Is there any alternative in vim search and replace for strings, than having to escape every special character in string. For example, If I want to match following string and replace with something [...
MohitC's user avatar
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10 votes
2 answers
4k views

How to write condition with regular expression?

I'm aware of the following comparison: if @% == "/tmp/crontab.zi5NeVPGRc" set nobackup set nowritebackup set noundofile set noswapfile endif But how can I use regular expression? For example ...
kenorb's user avatar
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10 votes
2 answers
326 views

How can I make vim stop splitting my words into chunks?

English language users probably don't have this trouble, but vim is pretty dumb when it comes to regular expressions. In my case most letters in the Turkish alphabet outside the EN alphabet don't seem ...
Caleb's user avatar
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10 votes
1 answer
3k views

Using a variable in a regex pattern [duplicate]

I'm trying to write a function that will delete each line that matches a pattern. But that pattern will change based on the words held in a list (made from a dictionary). I was thinking it would be a ...
embedded.kyle's user avatar
10 votes
2 answers
7k views

Nested matching group in regex

I have a common usecase when I transform some python expression the following way: value 1 value 2 value 3 into ['value 1', 'value 2', 'value 3'] The easiest way may be to use a mapping, but I ...
nobe4's user avatar
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9 votes
2 answers
876 views

Duplicate lines beginning with "x", replacing "x" in the duplicate with "y"?

I have a file with the following pattern: foo 111 baz foo 222 baz foo 333 baz which needs to be turned into foo 111 bar 111 baz foo 222 bar 222 baz foo 333 bar 333 baz So, duplicate all the lines ...
LB7979's user avatar
  • 301
9 votes
2 answers
836 views

How to match a word ending with uppercase letter and a specific letter?

I have words like lblSERINOd in sentences. Words are separated by white space. I want to replace the d at the end of all such words with u. So for example lblSERINOd will look like lblSERINOu. I ...
Utku's user avatar
  • 305
9 votes
2 answers
317 views

Mixed case regular expression replacement, in Vim

I often run into a situation where I have a file with a lot of mixed case. For example, CamelCase and camelCase I'm looking for a Vim regular expression replacement to produce, AnotherCase and ...
wsams's user avatar
  • 193
9 votes
1 answer
1k views

Regex that prefers shorter matches within a match? (This is more involved than non-greedy)

I'm trying to create a script for performing fuzzy search inside a buffer. The main idea is to take some input, and insert .\{-} between every pair of characters, e.g. foo becomes f.\{-}o.\{-}o. This ...
tommcdo's user avatar
  • 7,580
8 votes
4 answers
3k views

Add constant integer to visually selected numbers

I have a file like the following : two different files were yanked one after another, and the numbers subsequently don't match anymore. ... 46 atom 142 option 47 atom 143 ...
Feffe's user avatar
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8 votes
1 answer
29k views

How to search for any repeating character, X number of times

Let's say a buffer has a certain characters I know will be repeated seven (7) times. How can I search for any character repeated seven times? I know I can search for .., but those to characters won'...
user3.1415927's user avatar
8 votes
2 answers
5k views

Enable incremental search and highlight while typing a search term?

While I enter a regular expression on the vim command line, I would like to see what matches the partial expression I already wrote. For example, while writing the command :%s/regular all words ...
Volker Siegel's user avatar
8 votes
4 answers
2k views

Store the number of matches in VimScript function?

Is there any way to store the number of matches in a variable in a VIMScript function? For instance I'm using: %s/,//gn
leeand00's user avatar
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8 votes
2 answers
550 views

Define syntax in only one line

I would like the first line of some documents I have to be highlighted as a comment. I would like something like: syntax match myTypeComment /{apply only to first line}^.*$/ But I don't know how ...
Ognan's user avatar
  • 83
8 votes
1 answer
1k views

What is an atom?

I have been looking through many resources but cannot seem to find the definition of an atom. In the website link http://vimregex.com/, how does an atom defer from a character in regex? \{-} matches ...
Stephen Jacob's user avatar
8 votes
1 answer
2k views

How do I replace a character with its hex value?

I want to replace a character with its hex literal. For example before regex: h After regex: 0x68 I'm trying this: s/\([a-z]\)/\=printf("%#02x", submatch(0))/ But this replaces it with 00 ...
DJMcMayhem's user avatar
  • 17.3k
7 votes
4 answers
9k views

How to delete a multi-line match?

For testing purposes I've opened the following file: vim http://example.com/ And I'm using the following command to delete a highlighted multi-line pattern: :/<body\_.\{-}body>/d which ...
kenorb's user avatar
  • 18k
7 votes
3 answers
11k views

regular expression to find lines containing multiple specific words or patterns in any arbitrary order

Suppose we have the following very simple file: 1 x 3 x x 3 x 1 Now I'd like to have a pattern that matches all lines containing both 1 and 3. The order and position should not matter. (Note that I ...
myrdd's user avatar
  • 203
7 votes
2 answers
203 views

Executing a command on delimited lines

How can I run a command on all lines delimited, say by \begin{otherlanguage} and \end{otherlanguage}? For example, 1 This line should not be affected, 2 \begin{otherlanguage} 3 but ...
Toothrot's user avatar
  • 3,119
7 votes
1 answer
2k views

XOR two lines to see differences

I need to compute a "XOR"-like of two lines to find every char that differs between the two lines. I know the vim-diff feature can easily achieve that, but for comparing two lines I wanted to keep ...
nobe4's user avatar
  • 15.8k
7 votes
2 answers
3k views

How do I search for a line that contains a pattern at column n

In writing some Vimscript to try to answer this question, I was exploring ways to "search for a line with pattern P in position X" (P is a search pattern, X is a number). One way to do this would be ...
jalanb's user avatar
  • 656
7 votes
1 answer
6k views

Escape quotes within quotes in command

I'm trying to run a command (from within a function) that goes somewhat like this: execute a:firstline . ',' . a:last line . 'g/\(\.\|!\|?\)\()\|]\|"\|'\)*\($\|\s\)/execute "normal! v(:call ...
dbmrq's user avatar
  • 857
7 votes
3 answers
3k views

regex: how to replace "\["?

I have this sample line in the buffer: export PS1="\[${Cyan}\]$(((SHLVL>1)) && echo "${SHLVL}\[${IBlack}\].")\[${IGreen}\]\u\[${IBlack}\]@\[${Purple}\]\h\[${IYellow}\] \w \$ \[${Color_Off}\...
Kossak's user avatar
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