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I have to work on a really old AIX workstation with vi version 3.10 in it. I have done a little work in vim, but that was much more easy to use than the old vi (atleast untill I get used to the old vi).

Since I have been using the backspace key to erase my previous character for ever since I was born, I would like to have that functionality in vi as well.

I did search for a solution.

I found the following:

  1. :set backspace=2 (:set all does not have a backspace option, nor nocompatible)

  2. stty erase ^? (Didn't work)

  3. In .exrc file in my home directory, I can set up a mapping. ie, map .

However, in the edit mode in vi, pressing backspace actually takes my cursor to one position on the left, but does not remove it.

How do I map a supposedly arrow key to make it perform the function of a backspace?

AIX Version: 5 5300 something. uname -a gives AIX << hostname >> 3 5

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In the insert mode: backspace = move cursor one step left del = Change case of character In the command mode: backspace = function of delete or x del = Change case of character – Shashank Singh Mar 27 '13 at 11:45
When you enter new characters after pressing backspace in edit mode, do they replace old ones? Also, AIX gurus may want to know that AIX version are you using. – sendmoreinfo Mar 27 '13 at 19:18
No they dont. It simply places the cursor to one char left of the current, without deleting it. I believe version is AIX 5 – Shashank Singh Mar 28 '13 at 6:21


:map Backspace  X

You’ll have to type a Ctrl+V immediately before the Backspace, and so the command will probably look like

:map  ^H  X

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