:!cp % %-

Create a backup of file being edited while using vi

At the start of a vi session and *before* saving any changes use ":!cp % %-" to make a backup of the current file being edited. example: vi /data/some/long/path/file :!cp% %- creates /data/some/long/path/file-

5
By: mpb
2009-03-17 00:34:24

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What Others Think

You do realize that vim can be set to backup files, right? Aside from that, you should check out the -b option for cp.
jmcantrell · 479 weeks and 3 days ago
@jmcantrell command-line fu is about commands not config files. In any case, I have been using "!cp % %-" since 1990 (when vim did not exist) and I prefer to name the backup file to my own convention. For me, "file" and "file-" is sufficient. However, this technique could also be used to make snapshots of the file as the edit progresses: "!cp % %-1! "!cp % %-2! "!cp % $-with-function-y" etc etc
mpb · 479 weeks and 3 days ago
:w! >> file
voyeg3r · 479 weeks and 2 days ago
This may actually be a good way to create live patches of ascii files. Thanks for the idea.
denzuko · 472 weeks and 2 days ago
super handy
soupmagnet · 24 weeks ago

What do you think?

Any thoughts on this command? Does it work on your machine? Can you do the same thing with only 14 characters?

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