OK - I am linux newbie - I am trying to edit a file from bash via edit <filename> command in whatever the default mode is (I am assuming 'vi'?).

Problem is for the hell of me I cannot how to save and out of edit mode - this cheatsheet seems to suggest ESC should do the trick but it doesn't seem to work.

I am connecting via ssh from a mac to a linux suse enterprise 11 box.

Any help appreciated!

  • 1
    Additionally I would setup some aliases in your .bashrc if you plan to continue using edit so you can specify which editor is used when using the edit command. Personally I just type in vim preceeding a file that I want to edit but to each their own. – Wilshire Jun 19 '11 at 18:45

Esc will only throw you back into command mode in VI or Vim. To Save and quit press Shift + Z + Z, :wq, or :x in command mode. If you are opening the file in read only mode you will have to hit :q!.

Consider looking at this cheatsheet as well for more macros VI cheatsheet

  • 4
    :wq to quit and save. – petrus Jun 19 '11 at 20:13
  • 1
    :x does the same as :wq - but you save one key :) – faker Jun 19 '11 at 22:43
  • shift + Z worked for me :) – James111 Dec 12 '15 at 0:48

If you are new to Linux I would suggest using something other than vi. For instance, nano is fairly user-friendly, although much less powerful. Also, vim is a variant of vi that has some more features (like syntax highlighting) and is slightly easier to use.


In the bash to save the code press esc after esc press the con+x and the alert of do you want to save will appear press "y" over there and hit the enter button.May this help you..

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.