The Mouse, the Screen, and the Vim

A tale many years in the making…

I have been lacking two things for so long, now that I can do it, I wonder if I will ever remember to use it!

The Problem

I use a MacBook Pro with OS X Mavericks. I log into my Linux servers with SSH. I use GNU screen to allow me to save sessions, detach, and come back later without closing running programs and what not. BUT, I can’t use the mouse scrolling for the terminal output or to scroll through files opened with Vim.

The Solution

I finally found the pieces missing to make this possible. All with a couple of lines of code and a new SIMBL bundle.

To get the scroll working in screen, just add this line to your .screenrc



It’s not perfect. If you have multiple windows in a screen session, then the history buffers get all meshed together. But I usually just need to see info from a command output that is longer than the screen window, and this will let me see it. Finally! Thanks Slapitjack! See here for an explanation of the code.

To get the scroll back in Vim, whether using screen or not. You first need to install SIMBL. The version for Snow Leopard works with Mavericks. Then grab a copy of MouseTerm. The installer didn’t work, but you just need to copy the MouseTerm.bundle to /Library/Application Support/SIMBL/Plugins folder (or ~/Library/Application Support/SIMBL/Plugins if needed for just your user account). Restart your Terminal and you’re good to go.

Viola! Vim and scrolling, GNU screen and scrolling! Live as it was meant to be…

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