Let's say I have been working in a given Vim session for some time, and come to a point where I really would like to have everything I am looking at in GVim instead.

The actual use-case is a terminal Vim session with a large number of windows... I'd like to click-activate them instead of going through Ctrl-W each time, something that can be done in GVim but not Vim (not mine, at least).

Is there a way to take the buffers / windows / tabs currently open in Vim, and open them in GVim instead?

  • All nice and well, but completely unnecessary to solve the actual use-case problem: set mouse=a activates mouse support for terminal Vim as well, making Vim windows click-activateable...
    – DevSolar
    Jun 26, 2014 at 13:14

2 Answers 2


You can use the :gui command to open the current session in GVim.

See :help :gui for the gory details.

  • I actually found Ingo's answer to be more helpful overall, as I didn't know about sessions and could see where they can be useful outside the scope of my actual question. But you did answer the actual question more precisely, so I feel you should get the checkmark of honor.
    – DevSolar
    May 20, 2014 at 12:02

That's what sessions are for. In terminal Vim, you save your current setup via :mksession Session.vim, quit Vim, and then launch GVIM with that session: $ gvim -S Session.vim.

You can influence what gets persisted via 'sessionoptions'. I'd recommend to remove storing the mappings, that reduces the session size significantly: :set sessionoptions-=options. Also, there are plugins like session.vim - Extended session management for Vim that simplify the handling.

  • So simple, yet so powerful. I don't think I will ever stop being amazed by Vim. Thanks!
    – DevSolar
    May 20, 2014 at 9:06

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