How to do case insensitive search in Vim – Dev

The best answers to the question “How to do case insensitive search in Vim” in the category Dev.


I’d like to search for an upper case word, for example COPYRIGHT in a file. I tried performing a search like:

/copyright/i    # Doesn't work

but it doesn’t work. I know that in Perl, if I give the i flag into a regex it will turn the regex into a case-insensitive regex. It seems that Vim has its own way to indicate a case-insensitive regex.


As well as the suggestions for \c and ignorecase, I find the smartcase very useful. If you search for something containing uppercase characters, it will do a case sensitive search; if you search for something purely lowercase, it will do a case insensitive search. You can use \c and \C to override this:

:set ignorecase
:set smartcase
/copyright      " Case insensitive
/Copyright      " Case sensitive
/copyright\C    " Case sensitive
/Copyright\c    " Case insensitive


:help /\c
:help /\C
:help 'smartcase'


You can use the \c escape sequence anywhere in the pattern. For example:

/\ccopyright or /copyright\c or even /copyri\cght

To do the inverse (case sensitive matching), use \C (capital C) instead.


You can issue the command

:set ignorecase

and after that your searches will be case-insensitive.


You can set the ic option in Vim before the search:

:set ic

To go back to case-sensitive searches use:

:set noic

ic is shorthand for ignorecase