Jake Worth

Exit Vim "Ex" Mode

Published: April 06, 2022 2 min read

  • vim

How does one exit Vim “Ex” mode?

But first, how did you get into “Ex” mode? Probably with Q:

	    *Q* *mode-Ex* *Ex-mode* *Ex* *EX* *E501*
Q	Switch to "Ex" mode.  This is a bit like typing ":"
	commands one after another, except:
	- You don't have to keep pressing ":".
	- The screen doesn't get updated after each command.
	- There is no normal command-line editing.
	- Mappings and abbreviations are not used.

If you got into this mode by accident, as I have often done, you might miss the initial instruction:

Entering Ex mode.  Type "visual" to go to Normal mode.

And so, exit “Ex” mode with :visual or :vi.

“Ex” mode is the mode of Vim that I know the least about. I’ve been using Vim for close to a decade, and I’ve really never see it in use. I’d love to know who is using it and why.

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