created 2006 · complexity basic · author Andreas Hübner · version 7.0
When working on projects with other people, you may need to quickly highlight various whitespace usage issues.
The following script can identify any combination of four types of whitespace issues:
- Trailing whitespace (space or tab) at end of line.
- Spaces used for indenting (if project should use only tabs for indenting).
- Spaces before a tab (probably should be removed or converted to tabs).
- Tabs not at the start of the line (that is, not used for indents).
After sourcing the following script, you can type \ws (assuming the default leader key) to toggle whitespace highlighting on/off. The buffer local variable b:ws_flags determines what is highlighted (see "default" below).
" Highlight whitespace problems. " flags is '' to clear highlighting, or is a string to " specify what to highlight (one or more characters): " e whitespace at end of line " i spaces used for indenting " s spaces before a tab " t tabs not at start of line function! ShowWhitespace(flags) let bad = '' let pat =  for c in split(a:flags, '\zs') if c == 'e' call add(pat, '\s\+$') elseif c == 'i' call add(pat, '^\t*\zs \+') elseif c == 's' call add(pat, ' \+\ze\t') elseif c == 't' call add(pat, '[^\t]\zs\t\+') else let bad .= c endif endfor if len(pat) > 0 let s = join(pat, '\|') exec 'syntax match ExtraWhitespace "'.s.'" containedin=ALL' else syntax clear ExtraWhitespace endif if len(bad) > 0 echo 'ShowWhitespace ignored: '.bad endif endfunction function! ToggleShowWhitespace() if !exists('b:ws_show') let b:ws_show = 0 endif if !exists('b:ws_flags') let b:ws_flags = 'est' " default (which whitespace to show) endif let b:ws_show = !b:ws_show if b:ws_show call ShowWhitespace(b:ws_flags) else call ShowWhitespace('') endif endfunction nnoremap <Leader>ws :call ToggleShowWhitespace()<CR> highlight ExtraWhitespace ctermbg=darkgreen guibg=darkgreen
- Highlight unwanted spaces other methods to display unwanted whitespace
The original tip had a script with quite a nice toggle, but it highlighted all tabs as well as trailing whitespace. That didn't seem any better than Highlight unwanted spaces, so I've replaced the script and done a very quick test. Please add any thoughts on the code below (bugs? useful?). --JohnBeckett 11:10, 26 August 2008 (UTC)