Run Vim Macro on Visual Selection

3/19/2021

Sometimes you want to run a macro in vim on a visual selection. Here is how 😁

# Setup VIM

Add the following to your .vimrc.

xnoremap @ :<C-u>call ExecuteMacroOverVisualRange()<CR>

function! ExecuteMacroOverVisualRange()
  echo "@".getcmdline()
  execute ":'<,'>normal @".nr2char(getchar())
endfunction

Now you can select lines with V in vim and execute macros on all selected lines - eg. with @q.

# Example

Let's say we have the following piece of code.

// public function doSomething() {
//     echo "something";
// }

public function doSomethingElse() {
     echo "something else";
}

// public function doSomethingMore() {
//     echo "something more";
// }

Then we could record the following while we uncomment the first line of the doSomething method.

I<Del><Del><Del><Esc>j

Then the method would look like the following and your cursor would be on the second line.

public function doSomething() {
//     echo "something";
// }

Now press V in command mode to select the current line and select the rest of the method by pressing j one time. Next you can run the macro you just recorded - eg. with @a.

This should run the sequence I<Del><Del><Del><Esc>j on all selected lines.

Now go ahead and try it out with the other commented out method 👨‍🏫

Awesome right? 😁