Could anyone suggest me how to open multiple files in a vim with a double click from filesystem. Currently I can open multiple files in vim using:

  1. :tabe
  2. NERDTree file navigation
  3. using gVim

But I don't like these solutions. All I want is a simple technique that when I double click a file, will open as a new tab in a vim instead of a new terminal instance of vim. The mechanism simple code-editors like sublime-text follows for example.

Thank you.

  • I don't see this working. Vim runs in the terminal and I guess you're double clickung in some file manager, right? I dont't think this "link" can be made. What I usually do is "vim foo.*" and then ":tab all" in vim. Also, typing ":tabnew bar" in vim shouldn't be much slower (actually it should be faster) than grabbing the mouse and double clicking.
    – fpnick
    Commented Aug 30, 2018 at 10:13
  • @fpnick - you are right, its fast to open when the file is in same directory using :tabe but when I have to go to completely different folder its little bit harder.
    – Dharma
    Commented Aug 30, 2018 at 10:25

1 Answer 1


Vim has a :help client-server feature built-in. For terminal Vim, this needs access to the X server (:help x11-clientserver), and you need explicitly specify a servername when launching Vim:

$ vim --servername target

Then, in a different terminal (or via a shell script that you register for "double-clicks from filesystem", e.g. via a Nautilus plugin), you can make the first Vim edit passed file(s):

$ vim --servername target --remote /path/to/file [...]
  • Thank you for your answer. But this is not what I want, I want a simple feature like opening multiple files in gedit in tabs from double click on filesystem. But I will stick to NerdTree for now.
    – Dharma
    Commented Sep 20, 2018 at 8:44
  • Well, what looks like a simple feature in other editors usually involves a similar kind of inter-process communication; it's just better hidden from you. The things I've outlined are not that complex (if you know what to do) - of course, you're free to skip the learning experience for now if you have another working alternative. Commented Sep 20, 2018 at 8:55

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