I write the following configuration in my /etc/vim/vimrc to run the Vundle plugin.

Why I got this errors?

Vim configuration block that I add:

set nocompatible              " be iMproved, required
filetype off                  " required

" set the runtime path to include Vundle and initialize
set rtp+=~/.vim/bundle/Vundle.vim
call vundle#begin()
" alternatively, pass a path where Vundle should install plugins
"call vundle#begin('~/some/path/here')

" let Vundle manage Vundle, required
Plugin 'VundleVim/Vundle.vim'

" All of your Plugins must be added before the following line
call vundle#end()            " required
filetype plugin indent on    " required
" To ignore plugin indent changes, instead use:
"filetype plugin on
" Brief help
" :PluginList       - lists configured plugins
" :PluginInstall    - installs plugins; append `!` to update or just :PluginUpdate
" :PluginSearch foo - searches for foo; append `!` to refresh local cache
" :PluginClean      - confirms removal of unused plugins; append `!` to auto-approve removal
" see :h vundle for more details or wiki for FAQ
" Put your non-Plugin stuff after this line

I got these errors while running .vimrc:

root@someone-System-Product-Name:/etc/vim# vim vimrc
Error detected while processing /usr/share/vim/vimrc:
line    6:
E117: Unknown function: vundle#begin
line   11:
E492: Not an editor command: Plugin 'VundleVim/Vundle.vim'
line   14:
E117: Unknown function: vundle#end
Press ENTER or type command to continue

If I run :PluginInstall, I got the error 'Not an editor command'.

  • Not it is not exist Feb 6, 2019 at 15:17

1 Answer 1


You are mixing the system-wide configuration with user configuration.

The manual of Vundle suggests adding a script to “your .vimrc”, i.e. ~/.vimrc, particularly adding a link to ~/.vim/bundle/Vundle.vim. Both these files reside in a user’s home directory (~) and do not affect other users.

However, if you put the script (including the link to a user’s home directory!) to the system-wide Vim configuration /etc/vim/vimrc, you must

  • either place the file Vundle.vim to a location that is valid system-wide (e.g. /opt, /etc/vim) and provide the path in /etc/vim/vimrc
  • or ensure that the file ~/.vim/bundle/Vundle.vim exists for any user, including root.

The home directory (~) for root is /root. So if the file /root/.vim/bundle/Vundle.vim does not exist on your machine, Vim cannot load it when processing your /etc/vim/vimrc as the root user.

I got these errors while running .vimrc:

# vim vimrc

This is likely not related to opening the vimrc file specifically, the problem impacts launching Vim as such because Vim reads its configuration files during that. It should happen even if you issue a plain vim command without any file.

By the way, be aware of each character of a filename. vimrc does not equal .vimrc, these are different files.

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