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Random Talk on Random Thoughts

Switch Tmux Panes and Vim-$\rm \LaTeX$

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I use Byobu with Tmux backend.1


  • Moving across panes is inconvenient.
  • If I have a Vim vertical/horizontal split in a Tmux pane, I need to use two different sets of key bindings to navigate the adjacent panes.
  • In the copy mode, it’s great that most of the key bindings follow from those of Vim, but not the most important two:
    • start selection
    • copy


I find two articles on Giant Robots very useful.

  1. Seamlessly Navigate Vim and tmux Splits
  2. Tmux Copy & Paste on OS X: A Better Future

Therefore, I followed the steps in the first blog post, and installed Vim Tmux Navigator.

Another problem

After the installation of the Vim plugin, I got another problem while editing my VIMRC: The {Down-Mapping} didn’t work. Vim-$\rm \LaTeX$ should know the reason. I found an article describing a similar problem.2 However, I wouldn’t like to change ~/.vim/bundle/vim-latex/plugin/imaps.vim, so I got stuck at this point for hours. I tried to substitute {Down-Mapping} with <C-a>j in VIMRC, but it didn’t work.

Lessons Learnt

  1. Accept simple ways to do things

    Even though I can’t set {Down-Mapping} to <C-j>, the Vim editor command :TmuxNavigateDown isn’t so hard to type. I failed to realise that typing :tm<Tab> will do, and wasted time on that. Now I accept the use of two different sets of keystrokes for switching to the Tmux pane/Vim buffer below. We can look at this problem from another angle.

  2. Store a list of windows in a file

    A sample file can be found on Super User.3 I found that if I had run Byobu before, a session 0 would also be created on top of tmuxs. To avoid this problem, remove the first line in the sample window list and type byobu attach -t 0 starting from the second time of opening Byobu.