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Using Arrow Keys in iTerm with vi

by Oscar Sodani
September 26, 2007

Oscar Sodani is a founder of Help2Go and owner of Help2Go Networks, an IT consulting firm in the Washington D.C. area. Oscar holds the CISSP certification as well as industry certifications from Microsoft, Cisco and Novell.

If you are a Mac OS X user that is comfortable with the command line, you've probably already made the switch from to iTerm. When I made the switch, there was one major annoyance that drove me crazy: the arrow keys simply would not work in vi or vim.

I found numerous "solutions" on the web, but this is the one that worked for me on iTerm 0.9.5:

  • Click on Bookmarks, then Manage Bookmarks
  • Highlight the Default bookmark and click the edit icon
  • Change the Keyboard option to Global
That's all there is to it - when you create a new session, those pesky arrow keys will now work correctly in vi and vim.

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