Recursive search with vimgrep

Usually when I need to find things in multiple files, I would use grep or ack from a terminal and then open those files in vim to do whatever it is that I have to do.

This is ok, but sometimes this can be a little annoying.
Vim has a :grep function which will use the system grep command, but it also has a :vimgrep function that is built in to vim.

I had left a bunch of TODOs through out my code as a reminder to come back to them, so using :vimgrep I was able to quickly jump between them:

:vimgrep TODO **/*

This tells vim to search for the pattern TODO recursively from the current directory.
The **/ means recursive and the * means any file - therefore **/*.rb would just search the ruby scripts.

The results are loaded into the “quickfix window”. This means if you want to see all the occurences, you can open the list with :copen Naturally, :cnext, :cprevious, :cfirst, :clast, etc. will allow you to jump between them or you can use the quicklist window and press enter on the filename, or in gvim you can even use the mouse.

In addition, I use Tim Pope’s Unimpaired vim plugin, which provides the easy shortcuts [q and ]q for :cprevious and :cnext (respectively).