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SearchAsQuickJump : Quick search without affecting 'hlsearch', search pattern and history.

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created by
Ingo Karkat
script type
I use the built-in search (/, ?, n and N) for two different purposes:
1. For quick mouseless navigation to a place not far away, or as a {motion}
   e.g. in d/{pattern}/.
2. For actual searches, when I'm looking for and examining all occurrences
   inside the buffer or even multiple windows.

Unfortunately, there's a tension in how to configure the search-related
settings: For quick searches, highlighting of matches is not important, as my
eyes are already focused on the target text, I just want to get there with the
fewest keystrokes, and figured that a search for "/:le" is faster than
"3fA4whhh". Because the search pattern is mostly incomplete, the highlighting
should not continue to distract after the search; it should be off (but
'incsearch' helps to recognize when enough of the pattern is typed to reach
the desired location). Likewise, the search pattern is useless in the search
history and as the last pattern for the n command, as I am unlikely to
repeat that search. On the other hand, for actual searches, history recall,
repeated search and highlighting of matches are vital and central to the task.

How can this be reconciled? This plugin sets up alternative mappings to the
<CR> key which normally concludes entering of the search pattern in
command-line mode. By pressing <S-CR>, a quick search is triggered instead of
a normal one. This quick search does not use search highlighting and the
search pattern is not added to the search history, so it can be used without
affecting the normal search. Likewise, in a non-search command-line, the
executed command (for example, a :substitute) does not affect the current
search pattern and search history.

Next / previous matches can be jumped to via separate mappings, but not via
the default n / N commands. (Even if the integration with the SearchRepeat
plugin is used; contrary to most other integrations, this quick search must be
explicitly activated via the gnq / gNq mapping. )

- Check out the SearchSpecial.vim plugin page (vimscript #4948) for a full
  list of special searches powered by it.
- Check out the SearchRepeat.vim plugin page (vimscript #4949) for a full
  list of custom searches that integrate with it.

/{pattern}[/]<S-CR>     When a search via / or ? is sent off by pressing
?{pattern}[?]<S-CR>     <S-CR>, a quick forward / backward search is
                        performed. Matches will not be highlighted via
                        'hlsearch', and the search pattern will not be added
                        to the search history or used as the last pattern for
                        n / N search repeats.
                        Use this for a quick search without the formality and
                        persistence of a normal search, which can still be
                        obtained by concluding the pattern input with the
                        default <CR> at the end.
                        In the :... Ex command-line (and also >... debug
                        command-line), any change to the search pattern and
                        history is undone. For example, this is useful to do a
                        substitution without affecting the current search:
                        /foo<CR> :s/X/Y/<S-CR> n (keep searching for "foo")

The special searches all start with 'go...' (mnemonic: "go once to special
match"); and come in search forward (go...) and backward (gO...) variants.

[count]goq / gOq        Search forward / backward to the [count]'th occurrence
                        of the quick search pattern. This is the equivalent to
                        the default n / N search repeat commands.

The following commands are optional; cp. the SearchAsQuickJump-configuration
section below.

q*, q#                  Search forward / backward for the [count]'th
                        occurrence of the word nearest to the cursor.
gq*, gq#                Like above, but don't put "\<" and "\>" around the
                        word. This makes the search also find matches that are
                        not a whole word.
{Visual}q*              Do a quick search forward / backward for the [count]'th
{Visual}q#              occurrence of the current selection, like the built-in
                        gstar and g# commands.

                        These mappings are based on the built-in star and
                        # commands. Like with them, 'ignorecase' is used,
                        'smartcase' is not.
install details
The code is hosted in a Git repo at
You can use your favorite plugin manager, or "git clone" into a directory used
for Vim packages. Releases are on the "stable" branch, the latest unstable
development snapshot on "master".

This script is also packaged as a vimball. If you have the "gunzip"
decompressor in your PATH, simply edit the *.vmb.gz package in Vim; otherwise,
decompress the archive first, e.g. using WinZip. Inside Vim, install by
sourcing the vimball or via the :UseVimball command.
    vim SearchAsQuickJump*.vmb.gz
    :so %
To uninstall, use the :RmVimball command.

- Requires Vim 7.0 or higher.
- Requires the SearchSpecial.vim plugin (vimscript #4948), version 1.20 or
- SearchRepeat.vim (vimscript #4949) plugin, version 2.00 or higher (optional)

If the SearchRepeat plugin is installed, a parallel set of "go now and for
next searches" mappings (starting with 'gn...' instead of 'go...') is
installed. These mappings have the same effect, but in addition re-program the
'n/N' keys to repeat this particular search (until another gn... search is

For a permanent configuration, put the following commands into your vimrc:

If you don't want additional commands like the built-in '*', 'g*', '#' and
'g#' commands (but prefixed with 'q' and not affecting the current search),
    :let g:SearchAsQuickJump_DefineStarCommands = 0

If you want to use different mappings, map your keys to the
<Plug>(SearchAsQuickJump...) mapping targets _before_ sourcing the script
(e.g. in your vimrc):
    cmap <S-CR> <Plug>(SearchAsQuickJump)
Note that the default mapping only works in GVIM, but not in the terminal. A
possible alternative would be this:
    cmap <C-g><CR> <Plug>(SearchAsQuickJump)
You can also define different mappings for terminal and GVIM:
    if ! has('gui_running')
        cmap <C-g><CR> <Plug>(SearchAsQuickJump)

    nmap q* <Plug>(SearchAsQuickJumpStar)
    nmap q# <Plug>(SearchAsQuickJumpHash)
    nmap gq* <Plug>(SearchAsQuickJumpGStar)
    nmap gq# <Plug>(SearchAsQuickJumpGHash)
    xmap q* <Plug>(SearchAsQuickJumpStar)
    xmap q# <Plug>(SearchAsQuickJumpHash)

    nmap goq <Plug>(SearchAsQuickJumpNext)
    nmap gOq <Plug>(SearchAsQuickJumpPrev)

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script versions (upload new version)

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package script version date Vim version user release notes
SearchAsQuickJump-1.10.vmb.gz 1.10 2018-10-22 7.0 Ingo Karkat - ENH: Handle /.../{offset} (instead of just ignoring the {offset}). *** You need to update to SearchSpecial.vim (vimscript #4948) version 1.20! ***
SearchAsQuickJump-1.00.vmb.gz 1.00 2017-11-20 7.0 Ingo Karkat Initial upload
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