How to get colored syntax in Vim on Debian

· by Peter · Read in about 2 min · (251 words) ·

I’m using Debian Linux as a second operating system. Previously I was using it only for my servers, but now I’ve decided to start doing some software development on it. As I love bash environment, the choice of text editor was pretty obvious, Vim, the greatest editor ever made. But problem was that I like my syntax to be colored, it’s easier to write program code then. No problem, I thought, quick searching via Google gave me the “:syntax on” command which should enable what I’ve wanted. After typing it in my Vim I’ve received a message “command not available in this version”, WTF? So I’ve searched and searched, and searched a little more:) And finally solved it!

To have colored syntax in Vim on Debian:
1. Login as root.
2. Execute “apt-get install vim-full”.
3. Edit “/etc/vim/vimrc” and uncomment line with “syntax on, by simply deleting ” sign.

That’s it! It’s working now. Last step (3) is not necessary, but it gives colored syntax to all users without need of typing “:syntax on” command every time Vim is started. Hope it would help somebody, because it took me a while to find this solution, so maybe I would spare this to you. I know it’s not best solution, because it’s installing a lot of stuff which you (and I) will probably never use, but for now it’s the only one I have. If you know how to get same result with less things to be installed, please let me know.