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Apart from the vim command, the vIm packages may also provide gvim, the Gnome version of vim. Beginning users might find this easier to use, because the menus offer help when you forgot or don't know how to perform a particular editing task using the standard vim commands.‌


6.2. Using the Vim editor

6.2.1. Two modes

The vi editor is a very powerful tool and has a very extensive built-in manual, which you can activate using the :help command when the program is started (instead of using man or info, which don't contain nearly as much information). We will only discuss the very basics here to get you started.

What makes vi confusing to the beginner is that it can operate in two modes: command mode and insert mode. The editor always starts in command mode. Commands move you through the text, search, replace, mark

blocks and perform other editing tasks, and some of them switch the editor to insert mode.

This means that each key has not one, but likely two meanings: it can either represent a command for the editor when in command mode, or a character that you want in a text when in insert mode.

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