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:cherry_blossom: A command-line fuzzy finder

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fzf - a command-line fuzzy finder travis-ci

fzf is a general-purpose command-line fuzzy finder.

It's an interactive Unix filter for command-line that can be used with any list; files, command history, processes, hostnames, bookmarks, git commits, etc.


  • Portable, no dependencies
  • Blazingly fast
  • The most comprehensive feature set
  • Flexible layout
  • Batteries included
    • Vim/Neovim plugin, key bindings and fuzzy auto-completion

Table of Contents


fzf project consists of the following components:

  • fzf
  • fzf-tmux
    script for launching fzf in a tmux pane
  • Shell extensions
    • Key bindings (
      , and
      ) (bash, zsh, fish)
    • Fuzzy auto-completion (bash, zsh)
  • Vim/Neovim plugin

You can download fzf executable alone if you don't need the extra stuff.

Using Homebrew or Linuxbrew

You can use Homebrew or Linuxbrewto install fzf.

brew install fzf # To install useful key bindings and fuzzy completion: $(brew --prefix)/opt/fzf/install

fzf is also available via MacPorts:

sudo port install fzf

Using git

Alternatively, you can "git clone" this repository to any directory and runinstall script.

git clone --depth 1 ~/.fzf ~/.fzf/install

Using Linux package managers

| Package Manager | Linux Distribution | Command | | --- | --- | --- | | APK | Alpine Linux |

sudo apk add fzf

| | APT | Debian 9+/Ubuntu 19.10+ |

sudo apt-get install fzf

| | Conda | |

conda install -c conda-forge fzf

| | DNF | Fedora |

sudo dnf install fzf

| | Nix | NixOS, etc. |

nix-env -iA nixpkgs.fzf

| | Pacman | Arch Linux |

sudo pacman -S fzf

| | pkg | FreeBSD |

pkg install fzf

| | pkg_add | OpenBSD | `pkg_add fzf

| | XBPS | Void Linux |

sudo xbps-install -S fzf

| | Zypper | openSUSE |

sudo zypper install fzf` |

Shell extensions (key bindings and fuzzy auto-completion) and Vim/Neovim plugin may or may not be enabled by default depending on the package manager. Refer to the package documentation for more information.


Pre-built binaries for Windows can be downloaded here. fzf is also available via Chocolatey and Scoop:

| Package manager | Command | | --- | --- | | Chocolatey |

choco install fzf

| | Scoop |

scoop install fzf


Known issues and limitations on Windows can be found on the wiki page.

As Vim plugin

If you usevim-plug, add this line to your Vim configuration file:

Plug 'junegunn/fzf', { 'do': { -\> fzf#install() } }

makes sure that you have the latest binary, but it's optional, so you can omit it if you use a plugin manager that doesn't support hooks.

For more installation options, see

Upgrading fzf

fzf is being actively developed and you might want to upgrade it once in a while. Please follow the instruction below depending on the installation method used.

  • git:
    cd ~/.fzf && git pull && ./install
  • brew:
    brew update; brew reinstall fzf
  • macports:
    sudo port upgrade fzf
  • chocolatey:
    choco upgrade fzf
  • vim-plug:
    :PlugUpdate fzf

Building fzf



fzf will launch interactive finder, read the list from STDIN, and write the selected item to STDOUT.

find \* -type f | fzf \> selected

Without STDIN pipe, fzf will use find command to fetch the list of files excluding hidden ones. (You can override the default command with



vim $(fzf)

Using the finder

  • CTRL-J
    ) to move cursor up and down
  • Enter
    key to select the item,
    to exit
  • On multi-select mode ( ```
  • m
    Shift-TAB ``` to mark multiple items
  • Emacs style key bindings
  • Mouse: scroll, click, double-click; shift-click and shift-scroll on multi-select mode


fzf by default starts in fullscreen mode, but you can make it start below the cursor with



vim $(fzf --height 40%)

Also check out




options if you prefer "top-down" layout instead of the default "bottom-up" layout.

vim $(fzf --height 40% --reverse)

You can add these options to


so that they're applied by default. For example,

export FZF\_DEFAULT\_OPTS='--height 40% --layout=reverse --border'

Search syntax

Unless otherwise specified, fzf starts in "extended-search mode" where you can type in multiple search terms delimited by spaces. e.g.

^music .mp3$ sbtrkt !fire

| Token | Match type | Description | | --------- | -------------------------- | ------------------------------------ | |


| fuzzy-match | Items that match


| |


| exact-match (quoted) | Items that include


| |


| prefix-exact-match | Items that start with


| |


| suffix-exact-match | Items that end with


| |


| inverse-exact-match | Items that do not include


| |


| inverse-prefix-exact-match | Items that do not start with


| |


| inverse-suffix-exact-match | Items that do not end with



If you don't prefer fuzzy matching and do not wish to "quote" every word, start fzf with




option. Note that when


is set,


-prefix "unquotes" the term.

A single bar character term acts as an OR operator. For example, the following query matches entries that start with


and end with either




, or



^core go$ | rb$ | py$

Environment variables

    • Default command to use when input is tty
    • e.g.
      export FZF\_DEFAULT\_COMMAND='fd --type f'
    • Default options
    • e.g.
      export FZF\_DEFAULT\_OPTS="--layout=reverse --inline-info"


See the man page (

man fzf

) for the full list of options.


If you learn by watching videos, check out this screencast by @samoshkin to explore




Many useful examples can be found on the wiki page. Feel free to add your own as well.



fzf-tmux is a bash script that opens fzf in a tmux pane.

# usage: fzf-tmux [LAYOUT OPTIONS] [--] [FZF OPTIONS] # See available options fzf-tmux --help # select git branches in horizontal split below (15 lines) git branch | fzf-tmux -d 15 # select multiple words in vertical split on the left (20% of screen width) cat /usr/share/dict/words | fzf-tmux -l 20% --multi --reverse

It will still work even when you're not on tmux, silently ignoring


options, so you can invariably use


in your scripts.

Alternatively, you can use

--height HEIGHT[%]

option not to start fzf in fullscreen mode.

fzf --height 40%

Key bindings for command-line

The install script will setup the following key bindings for bash, zsh, and fish.

  • CTRL-T
    • Paste the selected files and directories onto the command-line
    • Set
      to override the default command
    • Set
      to pass additional options
  • CTRL-R
    • Paste the selected command from history onto the command-line
    • If you want to see the commands in chronological order, press
      again which toggles sorting by relevance
    • Set
      to pass additional options
  • ALT-C
    • cd into the selected directory
    • Set
      to override the default command
    • Set
      to pass additional options

If you're on a tmux session, you can start fzf in a tmux split pane or in a tmux popup window by setting



-d 40%

). See

fzf-tmux --help

for available options.

More tips can be found on the wiki page.

Fuzzy completion for bash and zsh

Files and directories

Fuzzy completion for files and directories can be triggered if the word before the cursor ends with the trigger sequence which is by default



# Files under current directory # - You can select multiple items with TAB key vim \*\*<tab>

# Files under parent directory
vim ../**<tab>

# Files under parent directory that match `fzf`
vim ../fzf**<tab>

# Files under your home directory
vim ~/**<tab>

# Directories under current directory (single-selection)
cd **<tab>

# Directories under ~/github that match `fzf`
cd ~/github/fzf**<tab>

Process IDs

Fuzzy completion for PIDs is provided for kill command. In this case, there is no trigger sequence, just press tab key after kill command.

# Can select multiple processes with <tab> or <shift-tab> keys
kill -9 <tab>

Host names

For ssh and telnet commands, fuzzy completion for host names is provided. The names are extracted from /etc/hosts and ~/.ssh/config.

ssh \*\*<tab>
telnet **<tab>

Environment variables / Aliases

unset \*\*<tab>
export **<tab>
unalias **<tab>


# Use ~~as the trigger sequence instead of the default \*\* export FZF\_COMPLETION\_TRIGGER='~~' # Options to fzf command export FZF\_COMPLETION\_OPTS='+c -x' # Use fd ( instead of the default find # command for listing path candidates. # - The first argument to the function ($1) is the base path to start traversal # - See the source code (completion.{bash,zsh}) for the details. \_fzf\_compgen\_path() { fd --hidden --follow --exclude ".git" . "$1" } # Use fd to generate the list for directory completion \_fzf\_compgen\_dir() { fd --type d --hidden --follow --exclude ".git" . "$1" } # (EXPERIMENTAL) Advanced customization of fzf options via \_fzf\_comprun function # - The first argument to the function is the name of the command. # - You should make sure to pass the rest of the arguments to fzf. \_fzf\_comprun() { local command=$1 shift case "$command" in cd) fzf "[email protected]" --preview 'tree -C {} | head -200' ;; export|unset) fzf "[email protected]" --preview "eval 'echo \$'{}" ;; ssh) fzf "[email protected]" --preview 'dig {}' ;; \*) fzf "[email protected]" ;; esac }

Supported commands

On bash, fuzzy completion is enabled only for a predefined set of commands (

complete | grep \_fzf

to see the list). But you can enable it for other commands as well by using


helper function.

# usage: \_fzf\_setup\_completion path|dir|var|alias|host COMMANDS... \_fzf\_setup\_completion path ag git kubectl \_fzf\_setup\_completion dir tree

Custom fuzzy completion

(Custom completion API is experimental and subject to change)

For a command named "COMMAND", define


function using



# Custom fuzzy completion for "doge" command # e.g. doge \*\*<tab>
_fzf_complete_doge() {
  _fzf_complete --multi --reverse --prompt="doge&gt; " -- "[email protected]" &lt; 
<li>The arguments before <pre class="">--</pre> are the options to fzf.</li>
<li>After <pre class="">--</pre>, simply pass the original completion arguments unchanged (<pre class="">"[email protected]"</pre>).</li>
<li>Then write a set of commands that generates the completion candidates and
feed its output to the function using process substitution (<pre class="">&lt; ).</pre>

<p>zsh will automatically pick up the function using the naming convention but in
bash you have to manually associate the function with the command using
<pre class="">complete</pre> command.
<pre class="sh">[-n "$BASH"] &amp;&amp; complete -F _fzf_complete_doge -o default -o bashdefault doge
<p>If you need to post-process the output from fzf, define
<pre class="">_fzf_complete_COMMAND_post</pre> as follows.
<pre class="sh">_fzf_complete_foo() {
  _fzf_complete --multi --reverse --header-lines=3 -- "[email protected]" &lt; 
<h2>Vim plugin</h2>

<p>See <a href=""></a>.</p>

<h2>Advanced topics</h2>


<p>fzf is fast and is <a href="">getting even faster</a>. Performance should not be
a problem in most use cases. However, you might want to be aware of the
options that affect the performance.</p>

<pre class="">--ansi</pre> tells fzf to extract and parse ANSI color codes in the input and it
makes the initial scanning slower. So it's not recommended that you add it
to your <pre class="">$FZF_DEFAULT_OPTS</pre>.</li>
<pre class="">--nth</pre> makes fzf slower as fzf has to tokenize each line.</li>
<pre class="">--with-nth</pre> makes fzf slower as fzf has to tokenize and reassemble each
<li>If you absolutely need better performance, you can consider using
<pre class="">--algo=v1</pre> (the default being <pre class="">v2</pre>) to make fzf use a faster greedy
algorithm. However, this algorithm is not guaranteed to find the optimal
ordering of the matches and is not recommended.</li>

<h3>Executing external programs</h3>

<p>You can set up key bindings for starting external processes without leaving
fzf (</p>
<pre class="">execute</pre>, <pre class="">execute-silent</pre>).
<pre class="bash"># Press F1 to open the file with less without leaving fzf
# Press CTRL-Y to copy the line to clipboard and aborts fzf (requires pbcopy)
fzf --bind 'f1:execute(less -f {}),ctrl-y:execute-silent(echo {} | pbcopy)+abort'
<p>See <em>KEY BINDINGS</em> section of the man page for details.</p>

<h3>Preview window</h3>

<p>When the </p>
<pre class="">--preview</pre> option is set, fzf automatically starts an external process 
with the current line as the argument and shows the result in the split window. 
Your <pre class="">$SHELL</pre> is used to execute the command with <pre class="">$SHELL -c COMMAND</pre>. 
The window can be scrolled using the mouse or custom key bindings.
<pre class="bash"># {} is replaced to the single-quoted string of the focused line
fzf --preview 'cat {}'
<p>Since the preview window is updated only after the process is complete, it's
important that the command finishes quickly.</p>
<pre class="bash"># Use head instead of cat so that the command doesn't take too long to finish
fzf --preview 'head -100 {}'
<p>Preview window supports ANSI colors, so you can use any program that
syntax-highlights the content of a file, such as 
<a href="">Bat</a> or
<a href="">Highlight</a>:</p>
<pre class="bash">fzf --preview 'bat --style=numbers --color=always --line-range :500 {}'
<p>You can customize the size, position, and border of the preview window using
<pre class="">--preview-window</pre> option, and the foreground and background color of it with
<pre class="">--color</pre> option. For example,
<pre class="bash">fzf --height 40% --layout reverse --info inline --border \
    --preview 'file {}' --preview-window down:1:noborder \
    --color 'fg:#bbccdd,fg+:#ddeeff,bg:#334455,preview-bg:#223344,border:#778899'
<p>See the man page (</p>
<pre class="">man fzf</pre>) for the full list of options.

<p>For more advanced examples, see <a href="">Key bindings for git with fzf</a>
(<a href="">code</a>).</p>


<p>Since fzf is a general-purpose text filter rather than a file finder, <strong>it is
not a good idea to add <pre class="">--preview</pre> option to your <pre class="">$FZF_DEFAULT_OPTS</pre></strong>.</p>
<pre class="sh"># *********************
# *********************
export FZF_DEFAULT_OPTS='--preview "bat --style=numbers --color=always --line-range :500 {}"'

# bat doesn't work with any input other than the list of files
ps -ef | fzf
seq 100 | fzf
history | fzf

<h4>Respecting <pre class="">.gitignore</pre>

<p>You can use <a href="">fd</a>,
<a href="">ripgrep</a>, or <a href="">the silver
searcher</a> instead of the
default find command to traverse the file system while respecting
<pre class="">.gitignore</pre>.
<pre class="sh"># Feed the output of fd into fzf
fd --type f | fzf

# Setting fd as the default source for fzf
export FZF_DEFAULT_COMMAND='fd --type f'

# Now fzf (w/o pipe) will use fd instead of find

# To apply the command to CTRL-T as well
<p>If you want the command to follow symbolic links, and don't want it to exclude
hidden files, use the following command:</p>
<pre class="sh">export FZF_DEFAULT_COMMAND='fd --type f --hidden --follow --exclude .git'
<h4>Fish shell</h4>

<pre class="">CTRL-T</pre> key binding of fish, unlike those of bash and zsh, will use the last
token on the command-line as the root directory for the recursive search. For
instance, hitting <pre class="">CTRL-T</pre> at the end of the following command-line
<pre class="sh">ls /var/
<p>will list all files and directories under </p>
<pre class="">/var/</pre>.

<p>When using a custom </p>
<pre class="">FZF_CTRL_T_COMMAND</pre>, use the unexpanded <pre class="">$dir</pre> variable to
make use of this feature. <pre class="">$dir</pre> defaults to <pre class="">.</pre> when the last token is not a
valid directory. Example:
<pre class="sh">set -g FZF_CTRL_T_COMMAND "command find -L \$dir -type f 2&gt; /dev/null | sed '1d; s#^\./##'"
<h2>Related projects</h2>


<h2><a href="">License</a></h2>

<p>The MIT License (MIT)</p>

<p>Copyright (c) 2013-2020 Junegunn Choi</p>

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