After using Sublime for almost a year, I thought it was time to add some tools to the ole’ productivity suite that is my favorite text editor. Interested in snazzing up the look, feel and functionality of your Sublime Text 2 as well? You can do so with plugins, and this guide will get you up and running in minutes.
It’s possible to install plugins via Github and other sources, but the easiest route for managing your plugins is via Sublime Package Control. This open source package controller is (in my experience), the simplest way to install and manage packages for Sublime Text 2. Benefits include auto updates and instant availability (you don’t have to restart Sublime Text 2 to get a plugin running).
Install Package Manager
You have two options for installing the Sublime Text 2 Package Manager.
Install via Sublime Console
The first option is to open your sublime console and copy and paste the following code.
import urllib2,os; pf='Package Control.sublime-package'; ipp=sublime.installed_packages_path(); os.makedirs(ipp) if not os.path.exists(ipp) else None; urllib2.install_opener(urllib2.build_opener(urllib2.ProxyHandler())); open(os.path.join(ipp,pf),'wb').write(urllib2.urlopen('http://sublime.wbond.net/'+pf.replace(' ','%20')).read()); print 'Please restart Sublime Text to finish installation'
Another option is to install the package manually. To do so:
- Go to the menu and click Preferences –> Browse Packages
- Browse up one directory in your folder list to navigate into the Installed Packages directory.
- Download Package Control.sublime-package and copy it into Installed Packages (where you currently are).
- Restart Sublime Text.
- When Sublime Text opens again nothing will look different. Go ahead to the next step though to verify proper installation.
Note: If you have issues or want alternative installation methods, go to this website and
How to Install A New Package
After you have the Sublime Package Manager set up, installing new plugins is extremely fast.
- Type command + shift + p in Sublime Text 2. An intense search-looking box will pop up. (If you’re using Windows you’ll need to type ctrl+shift+p instead of cmd+shift+p in all instances it is mentioned throughout this article.)
- When it does, type ‘package control: install package’. Because everything auto-completes, chances are you won’t have to type the entire thing.
- Go ahead and click on ‘Package Control: Install Package’. You’ll see a little ASCII loading action on the bottom bar of Sublime Text 2.
- Scroll through the plethora of plugins available for download. When you find one you want to install just click on it. The bottom bar will let you know when the package has been installed.
How to Edit Package Settings After Install
After you’ve installed a plugin, you can find it by going to Sublime Text 2 in the menu –> Preferences –> Package Settings. In my experience all packages have Default and User settings, and some include a README.
A Few Sublime Text 2 Packages To Get You Started
Markdown Preview – If you write in Markdown this package is a must. This package automatically saves and previews Markdown files in your browser with just a few short keystrokes. (For reference, those keystrokes are cmd+shift+p, then search for Preview in Browser.)
BrowserRefresh – This plugin adds a key command that saves your current file and refreshes the page in your browser in one fell swoop. Magic.
Remove a Package You No Longer Want or Need
Regretting that last Sublime Text 2 package? Package Control makes it easy to remove something you don’t want anymore. Here’s how to remove a package.
- Press Command + Shift + p on your Mac (Note the command is cmd+shift+p if you’re using Windows. You’ll be using this key combination a lot from here on out).
- Go to Package Control: Remove Package in that top bar.
- Your installed packages will show up automatically. Click on the one you wantt o remove. The bottom bar will flash some text and in a second or two, confirm that the package has been sucessfully removed.
If you have any other questions, this source answered all my package manager questions thoroughly.
Your favorite text editor just got a lot sweeter. Enjoy.