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Learning the vi Editor (Nutshell Handbooks) [Paperback]

Linda Lamb , Linda Lamb , Arnold Robbins
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)

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Learning the vi and Vim Editors Learning the vi and Vim Editors 3.3 out of 5 stars (3)
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Book Description

11 Nov 1998 1565924266 978-1565924260 6

For many users, working in the Unix environment means using vi, a full-screen text editor available on most Unix systems. Even those who know vi often make use of only a small number of its features.

Learning the vi Editor is a complete guide to text editing with vi. Topics new to the sixth edition include multiscreen editing and coverage of four viclones: vim, elvis, nvi, and vile and their enhancements to vi, such as multi-window editing, GUI interfaces, extended regular expressions, and enhancements for programmers. A new appendix describes vi's place in the Unix and Internet cultures.

Quickly learn the basics of editing, cursor movement, and global search and replacement. Then take advantage of the more subtle power of vi. Extend your editing skills by learning to use ex, a powerful line editor, from within vi. For easy reference, the sixth edition also includes a command summary at the end of each appropriate chapter.

Topics covered include:

  • Basic editing
  • Moving around in a hurry
  • Beyond the basics
  • Greater power with ex
  • Global search and replacement
  • Customizing vi and ex
  • Command shortcuts
  • Introduction to the vi clones' extensions
  • The nvi, elvis, vim, and vile editors
  • Quick reference to vi and ex commands
  • vi and the Internet

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Product details

  • Paperback: 352 pages
  • Publisher: O'Reilly Media; 6 edition (11 Nov 1998)
  • Language: French
  • ISBN-10: 1565924266
  • ISBN-13: 978-1565924260
  • Product Dimensions: 21.6 x 16.8 x 2.2 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 509,672 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

More About the Authors

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Product Description

From the Publisher

This completely updated guide to editing with vi, the editor available on nearly every Unix system, now covers four popular vi clones and includes command summaries for easy reference. It starts with the basics, followed by more advanced editing tools, such as ex commands, global search and replacement, and a new feature, multiscreen editing.

About the Author

Arnold Robbins, an Atlanta native, is a professional programmer and technical author. He has worked with Unix systems since 1980, when he was introduced to a PDP-11 running a version of Sixth Edition Unix. He has been a heavy AWK user since 1987, when he became involved with gawk, the GNU project's version of AWK. As a member of the POSIX 1003.2 balloting group, he helped shape the POSIX standard for AWK. He is currently the maintainer of gawk and its documentation. He is also coauthor of the sixth edition of O'Reilly's Learning the vi Editor. Since late 1997, he and his family have been living happily in Israel.

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars This book covers vi, nvi, elvis, vim, and vile 25 Nov 2002
By bernie VINE VOICE
vi (visual) is probably one of the most flexible editors (notice it is an editor not a word processor) that one can use. There are several ways to accomplish the same common tasks. There are so many ways in fact that most people learn just a subset of commands and string them together to do their editing instead of learning the more exotic commands.

The advantage of an editor besides speed and simplicity is that you will not inadvertently place visually hidden code in the program as you can easily do with a word processor.

People got so used to this editor on dos based environments. You can still use the command line editor after the colon at the foot of the screen. When you find and use the abilities of vi you will wonder what you did without it.

This book is a great starting place and you may never need another.

The Topics include:

- Basic editing
- Moving around in a hurry
- Beyond the basics
- Greater power with ex
- Global search and replacement
- Customizing vi and ex
- Command shortcuts
- Introduction to vi clones' extensions
- The nvi, elvis, vim, and vile editors
- Summary of vi and ex commands
- Vi and the internet

The examples are quite clear and plentiful.
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9 of 17 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Everything that you need to know about vi 31 May 1999
By A Customer
I needed to learn to use vi and this book was a great help.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 4.7 out of 5 stars  44 reviews
24 of 24 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Very Good Intro To and Reference For vi 6 Jan 2000
By Ken of Orange - Published on
The 6th edition of this book is excellent! For the novice, it is very readable, and is able to bring a user up to speed quickly with simple, solid coverage of the basics.
It is also an excellent resource for the more advanced users, with good informative coverage of advanced editting techniques w/vi. The section on the various clones is also well done.
If you get this book, it is worth getting the little vi Editor Pocket Reference book, too, because its small size (~ 7" x 4" & 72 pages), makes it a convenient and easy to use reference book. I keep one of these little guys by the home linux machine, and another one at the office, too.
11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Essential material clearly presented 8 Nov 1999
By A Customer - Published on
Vi is a powerful yet difficult editor to learn in the beginning. Although there is an abundance of references on the web, it is very difficult to learn the editor effectively without a book. Even more difficult to learn is the advanced features of the editor. The book has definitely made the learning process as painless as possible. The chapters are arranged in such a way that the reader can learn the editor incrementally without being fed too much information at once. At the end of each chapter there is a reference so the reader can refresh what he/she has learned in the chapter. (This also makes the book a very good reference.) What I like most about the book is in Part II of the book: "Extensions and Clones." The book first gives a summary of all the common USEFUL features of the clonse. Then, in subsequent chapters, the author shows how to use the features in each of the clones. This has made my life much easier because I can look up what I need and then go to the particular chapter (in my case, vim) for the information in the sub-chapter.
10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A great book on this topic 10 Feb 2000
By A Customer - Published on
This book covers all the trick and traps to the Vi editor. It is an excellent source for anyone who wants to learn vi. It also is excellent for those who want to go beyond the basic.
12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great Introduction 9 Dec 1999
By B. Connelly - Published on
This book not only covered basic vi, but also variants such as vim, elvis, and more. I knew next to nothing going into this book, and by the end of the first few chapters, I was VERY comfortable with this often scary editor. Now that I know many of the powerful features, there's no going back to the others...
19 of 23 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars vi is addicting - impress your friends 1 July 2004
By Alexander E. Paulsen - Published on
When you see someone that knows what they are doing writing with vi you will be amazed. Get a taste of it yourself and you will be hooked.
vi is powerful beyond belief and honestly I had been using it for years before I got this wonderful book from O'Reilly. The power of vi is revealing in this easy to use and well structured reference and learning aid.
Impress your friends with some of the little known and used features and functions. The authio Linda Lamb certainly knows her way around the editor so pay careful attention to the examples she uses to illustrate functions. Many of these can be used almost as-is in your daily work.
I suppose with all the latest WYSWYG word processors vi seems a little dated, but using vi I can create, edit, copy and manipulate documents in a fraction of the time others can by clicking and drilling in a windowed application.
I love vi. It's the raw power thats addicting. Yeah sometimes you can really screw the pooch with a typo but generally vi is fairly forgiving. I should know, my typing stinks but vi is generally kind to me when I mess up.
I rated this book highly in spite of I would have liked a few more examples, but the examples Lamb included are very representative of what you as a user may need and actually use.
This is a typical O'Reilly book - excellent and a worthy addition to any serious compter professionals library.
Hey I just heard that vi is available even to Windows lamers.
Try it folks, give your mouse finger a badly needed rest. Going to vi is like getting out of Chevy Impala into an Indy car. The Chevy may have better seats and A/C, but when you touch that gas pedal you'll be hooked.
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