n³ The unorthodox terminal file manager
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nnn - Supercharge your productivity!

Latest release Availability CircleCI Status GitHub CI Status Privacy Awareness License

[Features] [Quickstart] [Plugins] [Wiki]

nnn () is a full-featured terminal file manager. It's tiny, nearly 0-config and incredibly fast.

It is designed to be unobtrusive with smart workflows to match the trains of thought.

nnn can analyze disk usage, batch rename, launch apps and pick files. The plugin repository has tons of plugins to extend the capabilities further e.g. live previews, (un)mount disks, find & list, file/dir diff, upload files. A patch framework hosts sizable user-submitted patches which are subjective in nature.

Independent (neo)vim plugins - nnn.vim, vim-floaterm nnn wrapper and nnn.nvim (neovim exclusive).

Runs on the Pi, Termux (Android), Linux, macOS, BSD, Haiku, Cygwin, WSL, across DEs or a strictly CLI env.

(there's more)


  • Quality
    • Privacy-aware (no unconfirmed user data collection)
    • POSIX-compliant, follows Linux kernel coding style
    • Highly optimized, static analysis integrated code
  • Frugal
    • Typically needs less than 3.5MB resident memory
    • Works with 8 colors (and xterm 256 colors)
    • Disk-IO sensitive (few disk reads and writes)
    • No FPU usage (all integer maths, even for file size)
    • Minimizes screen refresh with fast line redraws
    • Tiny binary (typically around 100KB)
    • 1-column mode for smaller terminals and form factors
    • Hackable - compile in/out features and dependencies
  • Portable
    • Language-agnostic plugins
    • Static binary available (no need to install)
    • Minimal library deps, easy to compile
    • No config file, minimal config with sensible defaults
    • Plugin to backup configuration
    • Widely available on many packagers
    • Touch enabled, handheld-friendly shortcuts
    • Unicode support
  • Modes
    • Light (default), detail
    • Disk usage analyzer (block/apparent)
    • File picker, (neo)vim plugin
  • Navigation
    • Filter with automatic dir entry on unique match
    • Type-to-nav (turbo navigation/always filter) mode
    • Contexts (aka tabs/workspaces) with custom colors
    • Sessions, bookmarks, mark and visit a dir
    • Remote mounts (needs sshfs, rclone)
    • Familiar shortcuts (arrows, ~, -, @), quick look-up
    • cd on quit (easy shell integration)
    • Proceed to next file on file open and selection
  • Search
    • Instant filtering with search-as-you-type
    • Regex (POSIX/PCRE) and string (default) filters
    • Subtree search plugin to open or edit files
  • Sort
    • Ordered pure numeric names by default (visit /proc)
    • Case-insensitive version (aka natural) sort
    • By name, access/change/mod (default) time, size, extn
    • Reverse sort
    • Directory-specific ordering
  • Mimes
    • Preview hovered files in FIFO-based previewer
    • Open with desktop opener or specify a custom opener
    • File-specific colors (or minimal dirs in context color)
    • Icons and Emojis support (customize and compile-in)
    • Plugin for image, video and audio thumbnails
    • Create, list, extract (to), mount (FUSE based) archives
    • Option to open all text files in $EDITOR
  • Convenience
    • Detailed file stats and mime information
    • Run plugins and custom commands with hotkeys
    • FreeDesktop compliant trash utility integration
    • Cross-dir file/all/range selection
    • Create (with parents), rename, duplicate files and dirs
    • Create new file or directory (tree) on startup
    • Batch renamer for selection or dir
    • List input stream of file paths from stdin or plugin
    • Copy (as), move (as), delete, archive, link selection
    • Dir updates, notification on cp, mv, rm completion
    • Copy file paths to system clipboard on select
    • Launch apps, run commands, spawn a shell, toggle exe
    • Access context paths/files at prompt or spawned shell
    • Lock terminal after configurable idle timeout
    • Capture and show output of a program in help screen
    • Basic support for screen readers and braille displays


  1. Install nnn and the dependencies you need.
  2. The desktop opener is default. Use -e to open text files in the terminal. Optionally open detached.
  3. Configure cd on quit.
  4. Sync subshell $PWD to nnn.
  5. Install plugins.
  6. Use -x to sync selection to clipboard, show notis on cp, mv, rm and set xterm title.
  7. For a CLI-only environment, set NNN_OPENER to nuke. Use option -c.
  8. Bid ls goodbye! alias ls='nnn -de' 😎
  9. Visit the Live previews and Troubleshooting Wiki pages.

Don't memorize! Arrows, /, q suffice. Tab creates and/or cycles contexts. ? lists shortcuts.





Visit the Tracker thread for a list of features in progress and anything up for grabs. Feel free to discuss new ideas or enhancement requests.