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Usually, when I want to open a file encrypted by ansible-vault for editing, I just run ansible-vault edit <filename> - this decrypts the file to a temporary file and opens it for editing.

However, what I want to know is how to achieve this from within vim, e.g. by running a shell command using the :! ...command... syntax. For instance, I know that I can decrypt the file by open the encrypted file in vim, then running this:

:! ansible-vault edit %

But that opens the file with ansible-vault in a different window, and then you have to press a key to return to vim.

What I want to do is to be able to open this file with vim such that I can edit it alongside other regular files or files that are encrypted with ansible-vault. Currently I'm doing this by opening several tmux panes, but that's kind of a PITA.

  • Have you tried running :r! asnsible-vault edit ... . Editing normal files within vi(m) would be :e filename – Valentin Bajrami May 19 '17 at 12:08
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I've been doing this from inside vim when editing an encrypted vault file:

:!ansible-vault --vault-password-file=~/.vault_pass decrypt %

Make a change and then re-encrypt the file:

:!ansible-vault --vault-password-file=~/.vault_pass encrypt %

The vault password goes in ~/.vault_pass as plaintext

To just view the contents and then go back to the original encrypted file (using git as the SCM and fugitive.vim plugin), first decrypt and when done:

:Git checkout %

I might create a function or aliases for those commands to make it quicker in the future. For now I do a command history search so I don't have to type the whole thing every time:

q: /decrypt N enter

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