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Right now, I make everyone do ~/.vimrc and put their settings there.

How can I make a global, default .vimrc for new users?

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migrated from Nov 8 '09 at 4:10

This question came from our site for professional and enthusiast programmers.

up vote 37 down vote accepted

usually by creating /etc/vimrc or /etc/vim/vimrc. Depends on your version of vim and linux/unix

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I am using CentOS – Alex Nov 1 '09 at 2:12
should be /etc/vimrc on CentOs – ennuikiller Nov 1 '09 at 2:16
It is /etc/vimrc – Alex Nov 1 '09 at 2:21

to create a default ~/.vimrc for all new users, you should be able to drop it into /etc/skel

If I recall correctly, that provides the template for new user's home directories.

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In Debian, it appears the file you are looking for is:


It might be different in a different distro (though I think that is not much likely).

Good luck.

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By default it sources /etc/vim/vimrc.local which would be safer for updates – vvondra Nov 5 '15 at 14:05

See :help system-vimrc:

For Unix, MS-DOS, MS-Windows, OS/2, VMS, Macintosh, RISC-OS and Amiga the system vimrc file is read for initializations. The path of this file is shown with the ":version" command. Mostly it's "$VIM/vimrc". Note that this file is ALWAYS read in 'compatible' mode, since the automatic resetting of 'compatible' is only done later. Add a ":set nocp" command if you like.

So, put your system configurations in this file. Type :help version in vim to see where, or echo $VIM at the shell to see if $VIM is defined. (Note that you may have to set $VIM for all users, such as in a system bashrc file.)

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