github github
star 64
alert-circle 1
users 2
git-branch 4



10 days ago


A simple plugin to easily manage Neovim buffers

Neovim Lua


:warning: Important updates

To reduce the size of the repository, I have made some changes that could produce errors when updating the plugin if it was installed before these changes. One way to fix this is to reinstall the plugin completely (that is, remove and install).

The never-ending problem

I want to manage Neovim buffers easily, without the mental overhead of remembering its ids or partial names. Buffer management includes moving to a buffer and deleting/adding one or more buffers.

The proposed solution

Use a buffer-like floating window where all the open buffers are listed. To select one buffer, just hit its line number, or move to it and press <CR>. To delete the buffer, delete it from the list. To add it (predictably) add a filename to the list.


  • Neovim 0.5.0+ required
  • Install buffer_manager using your favorite plugin manager. E.g. Packer.nvim:
use 'nvim-lua/plenary.nvim'  -- basic dependency
use 'j-morano/buffer_manager.nvim'


View all buffers and go to a buffer

:lua require("buffer_manager.ui").toggle_quick_menu()

Then, move to one of them, and open it with <CR>. Alternative: press the key corresponding to its line number (notice that, in this case, 0 maps to 10, since there is no 0 line).

Add buffer/Create file

Write the filename of the new buffer.

(Some people will find this useless, but I often use this functionality together with an autocomplete for files.)

Tip: you can use the Neovim built-in file autocomplete functionality (<C-x><C-f>) to ease the opening of new files.

If the file does not exist, a new empty buffer will be created, which will be written to the specified file when it is saved.

Remove buffer

Delete it in the buffer menu.

Note: the plugin does not remove terminal buffers or modified buffers.

Reorganize buffers

The buffers can be reorganized in any way. To do it, just move the name of the buffer to the chosen line.

Go to next or previous buffer in the list

:lua require("buffer_manager.ui").nav_next()
:lua require("buffer_manager.ui").nav_prev()

Save buffer list to a file or load it

Introduce the filename interactively:

:lua require'buffer_manager.ui'.save_menu_to_file()
:lua require'buffer_manager.ui'.load_menu_from_file()

Introduce the filename directly as a function argument:

:lua require'buffer_manager.ui'.save_menu_to_file('bm')
:lua require'buffer_manager.ui'.load_menu_from_file('bm')


Plugin configuration

The plugin can be configured through the setup function:

require("buffer_manager").setup({ })

Available configuration options

  • select_menu_item_commands: Lua table containing the keys and the corresponding command to run for the buffer under the cursor.
  • line_keys: keys bound to each line of the buffer menu, in order.
  • focus_alternate_buffer: place the cursor over the alternate buffer instead of the current buffer.
  • width: Width in columns (if > 1) or relative to window width (if <= 1).
  • height: Height in rows (if > 1) or relative to window height (if <= 1).

Default configuration

    line_keys = "1234567890",
    select_menu_item_commands = {
      edit = {
        key = "<CR>",
        command = "edit"
    focus_alternate_buffer = false,

Example configuration

  line_keys = "",  -- deactivate line keybindings
  select_menu_item_commands = {
    v = {
      key = "<C-v>",
      command = "vsplit"
    h = {
      key = "<C-h>",
      command = "split"
  width = 0.8

Example keybinding for opening the buffer menu

To open the buffer menu, you can put this line in your Lua configuration file.

vim.keymap.set({ 't', 'n' }, '<M-Space>', require("buffer_manager.ui").toggle_quick_menu, {noremap = true})

Other useful settings

Reorder buffers

Since the buffer menu is just a buffer with the specific file type buffer_manager, you can define your own remaps using an autocmd for this filetype. For example, the following remaps allow to move a line up and down in visual mode with capital K and J, respectively.

autocmd FileType buffer_manager vnoremap J :m '>+1<CR>gv=gv
autocmd FileType buffer_manager vnoremap K :m '<-2<CR>gv=gv

This is very useful for reorganizing the buffers.

You can also set the previous autocmds with Lua as follows:

autocmd FileType buffer_manager vnoremap J :m '>+1<CR>gv=gv
autocmd FileType buffer_manager vnoremap K :m '<-2<CR>gv=gv

You can define custom keybindings for navigating buffers without opening the menu, but respecting the order in which the buffers appear in it.

local keys = '1234567890'
for i = 1, #keys do
  local key = keys:sub(i,i)
    string.format('<leader>%s', key),
    function () require("buffer_manager.ui").nav_file(i) end,


  • Logs are written to buffer_manager.log within the nvim cache path (:echo stdpath("cache"))
  • Available log levels are trace, debug, info, warn, error, or fatal. warn is default
  • Log level can be set with vim.g.buffer_manager_log_level (must be before setup())
  • Launching nvim with BUFFER_MANAGER_LOG=debug nvim takes precedence over vim.g.buffer_manager_log_level.
  • Invalid values default back to warn.

Contributing and reporting issues

All contributions are welcome! Just open a pull request.

Furthermore, feel free to open an issue if something is not working as expected.

All feedback is appreciated!


This plugin is based on Harpoon, an amazing plugin written by ThePrimeagen to easily navigate previously marked terminals and files.

Also, special thanks to bufdelete.nvim, for showing how to remove buffers correctly.