In the beginning of this post, I asked myself: why Vim and why I would like to cut my fingers? (Joke). An answer to this question is simple: I met with a number of situations in my life where I actually edit the file on the server or on a specific device connected to the network. But how to do it when there are no possibilities of installing any external text editor?
Everyone has their own toolbox, which is a set of tools that uses in everyday work and even after work. Sometimes it is so that incoming to the company/job anyone could ask a simple question. What tools do you use? So then what you say? In my opinion, either in the work of the tester, programmer or system administrator and any other work related to IT, it is important to know well and use a text editor. And the text editor in both Linux and Unix is Vim. Some will say that the Vi, but for simplicity, I will say that Vi and Vim mean to me almost the same thing.
For the moment someone says, but he is the best Emacs text editor, again, another person can say that Atom is really great. OK, I agree with all the views, but … There are some cons. Especially on any Linux and UNIX machine. If I log onto the production machine likely I’m will not even have the right to install any additional software but use this one that is already available. Of course, we can look around and see what happens but it will be hard with installing there any additional software. However, we will not use such editors as, for example, nano the text editor is often used on Ubuntu, but Red Hat or CentOS no longer can be a pre-installed editor, which is relatively easy to use.
Vim is free. If we have one machine – our beloved laptop we don’t need to pay for the license. We have 10,000 servers – is still free on each of these machines, there are no hidden costs involved.
The third reason – Vim is super customizable. The ability to install plugins, write your own and the engine itself can not be compared with any paid tool.
Another important thing is that Vim does not require a graphical user interface. Most servers do not have a graphical user interface installed, the X server so inevitably we can not run anything that will allow you to display icons, Eclipse, or are other java-based editors. We can never assume what we have installed on the server.
The last reason: Vim is a fast tool for editing code or editing files. If you’ve ever seen a user who has for several years used the Vim and how he can make changes in the code you were a probably very impressed. There is a competition which aims to see how quickly the participants can do the right things in Vim.
There is one disadvantage, the learning curve but in the end, it is worth it.