Super User is a question and answer site for computer enthusiasts and power users. It's 100% free, no registration required.

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

I'm writing a fair bit of interconnected non-code text in vim, and I'd like to generate my own tags to use with vim tagging.

For example, there's a file all about "foo", and ideally, whenever I'm editing the files "bar" and "baz" and the word "foo" comes up, I'd like to be able to hit ^] and jump to the foo file, and then hit ^T and jump back to wherever I was.

Is there any way for me to make my own tag files where the word "foo" points to the file "foo" and so on and so forth? Every source that I have checked just explains how to use ctags to generate tags for every programming language under the sun, but I'd just like to be able to create a simple tag file of my own.

share|improve this question
up vote 1 down vote accepted

If I understood right (and that's a capital IF) what you are looking for is basic vim help functionality. You define a tag (*some_word*) a lot of jumppoints (|jumppoint|) and that's it.

Without going into the details I'd really recommend you glance through the

:help tags

help file. It will explain a lot. I haven't done this in a while, but basically it comes down to this. You need to define tags (**), and then introduce them into vim's tag system via :helptags command. After that, don't move them, and when using jumppoints it will lead you to them via already mentioned Ctrl-] and T.

ctags and the like should not worry you ... this is completely vim's functionality, and they have nothing to do with it (they only come into the story when code comes into it ... and even then, in some cases, if you're willing to do some manual labour they can be avoided).

share|improve this answer
There was also one guy (blog) where he did exactly what you're looking to do now, but I cannot find it. When I do, I'll post a link. – Rook Jan 11 '10 at 0:27
:help tags-file-format

will give you some pointers on how to write a tags file. But you basically need lines like:

tagname TAB tagfile TAB location

The location can any Ex command; it could be a line number, but is usually a search pattern like /\<foo\>/ or /^Where is foo?$/ so that the tags don't need to be regenerated each time you edit your files.

share|improve this answer

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.