Getting Setup with Tmux & Nvchad

The chadiestest of all chads.

This tutorial shines on the steps I pathed through to get up and running with Tmux and Neovim. If this is your first time with tmux and neovim, I recommend fiddling around with tmux and neovim beforehand. The main idea with this setup allows a programmer to keep their hands on the keyboard at all times.

We are transforming our common habits of using a mouse with GUI IDE's into keeping our hands on the keyboard at all times. This configuration allows for navigating between different windows, lint checking and many other common advancements made from GUI, but without the point and click methodology that a GUI provides.

General Requirements

Tmux Requirements

  • autoconf
  • automake
  • make
  • optional Ubuntu: libevent-dev

Neovim Requirements

TPM Requirements (Tmux Plugin Manager)

  • Tmux v1.9+
  • git
  • bash

Installing via Ubuntu Package

Note: this will install the Ubuntu version and may be behind the most recent update.

sudo apt install neovim

Note: currently, installing it via ppa didn't work for me when applying the nvchad configuration; I had to build it from Source.

Building/Installing Neovim via Source

First, be certain you have the appropriate build prerequisites.

On Ubuntu, you can do this via the following command:

You may discover new platform requirements here:

Building/Installing Tmux from Source

See the Building Neovim wiki page and supported platforms for details.

Installing Tmux from Source (optional)

I chose to build/compile Tmux as a package application like .appimage. If you would like, you may also install via Ubuntu via sudo apt install tmux.

git clone
cd tmux
./configure && make

Configure Tmux

My ~/.tmux.conf was missing, so I created one manually and re-sourced.

Make directories manually

mkdir -p ~/.tmux/plugins/tpm
nano ~/.tmux.conf

Then, copy/paste the contents of dreamsofcode config into the new file.

tmux source ~/.tmux.conf

Configure Tmux Plugin Manager

Put this at the bottom of ~/.tmux.conf

# List of plugins
set -g @plugin 'tmux-plugins/tpm'
set -g @plugin 'tmux-plugins/tmux-sensible'
# Other plugin examples:
# set -g @plugin 'github_username/plugin_name'
# set -g @plugin 'github_username/plugin_name#branch'
# set -g @plugin '[email protected]:user/plugin'
# set -g @plugin '[email protected]:user/plugin'

Initialize TMUX plugin manager (keep this line at the very bottom of .tmux.conf)

run '~/.tmux/plugins/tpm/tpm'

Then, re-source your tmux.conf

tmux source ~/.tmux.conf

Install Nerd Font for Terminal

I chose to install Hurmit.otf font via a font-manager, but you may chose the font you prefer at:

Optional: Install Font-Manager via Ubuntu PPA

sudo apt install font-manager

Extract and add the fonts to font-manager

Then, in your terminal preferences, change the font to the nerd font you downloaded. Be sure the font type doesn't end with "Mono" too make use of the purrrty icons.

Install NvChad Neovim Configuration

The following command clones and copies the neovim configuration into ~/.config/nvim.

git clone ~/.config/nvim --depth 1 && nvim

If you have an ol' config in ~/.config/nvim the above command won't work and you will need to remove the it and try again. Also, the second command launches nvim. Be sure your paths are setup correctly and or point to the ./nvim executable.

rm -rf ~/.config/nvim 
rm -rf ~/.local/share/nvim

then, test the command above again.

git clone ~/.config/nvim --depth 1

and run nvim.appimage or if installed via ppa, nvim


If you have an error with a missing directory for init.lua like I did, you may need to also remove the /share/nvim directory.

rm -rf ~/.local/share/nvim


In conclusion, we now have an up-to-date super chad terminal IDE to play in with tmux super powers.

Financial Support & Donations

I mainly debug code, drive, yak shave and deep dive into research for Linux base operating systems.

I am a Free Software Associate (FSF), privacy advocate and Cosmopolitan that enjoys philosophie, meta-physics, hacking and debugging computer hardware/software.


Tmux Source Code

Build Neovim from Source

Dreamsofcode Shared Tmux Config

Tmux has forever changed the way I write code

Tmux Cheatsheet Reference

Useful Tmux Config Examples

Turn VIM into a full featured IDE with only one command

NvChad Download

P.S. In loving memory of Bram Moolenaar