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I've manually installed Vim7.3 on a Linux machine. After everything is compiled and working, I've discovered that there are (optional?) patches that can (should?) be installed.

  • What's the importance of these patches?
  • Is there an example of applying all patches at once?

Thanks...

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2 Answers 2

Well, I don't know how important is it do it, but it's quite easy:

From the directory containing all patches:

cat * > ../patch.txt

And then move "patch.txt" to "src" directory, and:

patch -b -p1 < patch.txt | tee patch.log
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The patches are bug fixes and minor feature additions. Whether any of them are important to you depends on how you use Vim and which features you use.

Vim patches can be applied like patches are to any other program. The process is briefly described here.

However, Vim 7.3 is currently at patch level 762. That's a lot of patches to download and apply. A better way to keep your Vim up to date is to obtain the source from the Mercurial repository as described here. It's really easy to do; doesn't require any more knowledge of Mercurial than the three commands given on that page; and is easier and less error prone than using patches.

To install:

hg clone https://vim.googlecode.com/hg/ vim

To update:

hg pull
hg update
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Well, I have used mercurial in the past, and I like it. However, it just doesn't work for me now. Maybe this computer is behind some kind of a firewall. Strange, but command line tools like wget, ftp, hg, git or even ping fail; but full browser like lynx or firefox works... –  Zvika Jan 15 '13 at 19:20
    
Of course, I do agree that in the general case HG seems to be simpler solution... However, are you sure that being at the Latest version in HG is equivalent to applying all patches? It sounds even riskier - being on the edge. –  Zvika Jan 15 '13 at 19:22
    
Yes. When the Vim maintainer creates a patch, he sends it to the vim_dev mailing list, adds it to the patches directory at vim.sourceforge.net, and checks it in to the Mercurial repository--I don't know in what order, but all within a day. If you can't use hg, using the patches works--I used to do that--it's just not as convenient. –  garyjohn Jan 15 '13 at 20:20
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