Posts tagged 'tags'

Smarter tag search in Vim

published on November 01, 2017.

As part of my Vim setup for PHP development, I use the vim-php-namespace plugin to add use statements in my PHP code.

vim-php-namespace uses the tags file to find the class and the namespace it belongs to, and then adds it to the rest of the use statements.

It all works great, but there are times when it shows too much possibilities.

For example, when I want to import the namespace for the Transaction class, it finds the correct Transaction class, but it also finds functions called transaction in my codebase, and then gives me a choice what I want to import:

See? One class (kind c), and two functions (kind f).

I could exclude functions from being generated in tag files, but that’s not really an option because there are times when I need the functions tags.

I dove into the vim-php-namespace source code, determined to get rid of this “functionality”.

Turns out the plugin actually uses a Vim command, called ptjump, to search the tags file and show the preview window, so the user can pick out the correct tag in case there’s more than one.

Of course there’s an option for that

Then I started reading the help pages for tags in more detail, and after a while I found the answer: tagcase.

To quote the help file:

This option specifies how case is handled when searching the tags file.

And it has the following options:

  • followic Follow the ‘ignorecase’ option
  • followscs Follow the ‘smartcase’ and ‘ignorecase’ options
  • ignore Ignore case
  • match Match case
  • smart Ignore case unless an upper case letter is used

I’ve set it to smart and, well, now it does what I want it to do:

set tagcase=smart

It correctly finds only one match for the Transaction class and the plugin inserts the use statement for it. Yey!

Happy hackin’!

Tags: namespace, php, plugin, tags, vim.
Categories: Development, Software.

Tags for PHP in Vim

published on March 09, 2016.

One thing I was missing for a long time in Vim is to be able to “jump to definition” in an easy and painless way.

The other thing I wanted to improve is to be able to tell easily where am I actually in the code base; to see the current class and method name of wherever the cursor was.

With a bit of googling and poking around, I finally came up with a perfect combo of 5 plugins (yep, five!) that enables me to do both, and a little bit of extra.

Tags made easy

Gutentags  is a brilliant Vim plugin that makes it so easy to have tags. Just install the plugin and boom! Tags! It will figure out things on it’s own and just generate the tags in the background. I use it daily for a fairly large code base and I never had any problems with the tags, or with Vim being unresponsive while the tags are being generated.

The only two settings I have set for it is what to exclude and where to store the tag files to not pollute the current project with them.

let g:gutentags_exclude = ['*.css', '*.html', '*.js']
let g:gutentags_cache_dir = '~/.vim/gutentags'

That’s it.

Jump to definition

Pair gutentags with CtrlP and it’s CtrlPTag method and we get jump to definition.

map <silent> <leader>jd :CtrlPTag<cr><c-\>w

Move to the method name we’re interested in, hit <leader>jd and it will jump to it’s definition. Tip: <C->w means “insert word under cursor”.

Where the hell am I?

My second requirement for displaying the current class and method name was a bit more difficult to fulfill. It takes the tagbar, tagbar-phpctags and lightline plugins as well as the phpctags tag generator to accomplish that.

Let the tagbar plugin know where the phpctags bin is:

let g:tagbar_phpctags_bin='~/.vim/phpctags'

This will make the tagbar plugin use phpctags to generate tags for the current file. To finally display the current tag in lightline, I wrote a simple tagbar component for it:

'tagbar': '%{tagbar#currenttag("[%s]", "", "f")}'

My complete lightline settings at the time of writing this can be found here.

Robert Basic

Robert Basic

Software engineer, consultant, open source contributor.

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