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SpaceVim vs Spacemacs: What are the differences?


SpaceVim and Spacemacs are two popular text editors that are developed specifically for programming purposes. While both editors are designed to enhance productivity and efficiency, there are key differences that set them apart.

  1. Configuration: SpaceVim adopts the concept of "layers" where each layer contains a specific set of configurations and functionality that can be easily enabled or disabled. This allows users to have more granular control over the features they want to use. On the other hand, Spacemacs follows a modular approach with "packages" that can be added or removed to customize the editor's behavior.

  2. Vim vs Emacs: SpaceVim is based on Vim, which is known for its efficiency and speed, while Spacemacs is built on top of Emacs, which excels in extensibility and customizability. As a result, SpaceVim provides a more lightweight and minimalistic experience similar to Vim, whereas Spacemacs offers a more feature-rich and versatile environment akin to Emacs.

  3. User Interface: SpaceVim has a cleaner and more streamlined user interface by default, which makes it easier for beginners to get started with. Spacemacs, on the other hand, provides a more comprehensive set of UI elements, such as mode lines and dedicated layers for different functionalities like code completion and version control, making it more suitable for power users who require advanced features.

  4. Installation: SpaceVim aims to be quick and easy to install, requiring minimal configuration. It focuses on simplicity and provides a curated selection of essential plugins out of the box, making it convenient for users who prefer a hassle-free setup. Spacemacs, on the other hand, requires a more involved installation process and offers an extensive range of preconfigured packages, making it suitable for users who seek a fully-fledged and customized programming environment.

  5. Community and Support: SpaceVim has a growing but comparatively smaller community compared to Spacemacs. While SpaceVim has an active development team and provides documentation and support, Spacemacs has a larger and more established community with a vast ecosystem of user-contributed packages and comprehensive documentation that caters to a wider range of user needs.

  6. Emacs Ecosystem Integration: Spacemacs leverages the extensive Emacs ecosystem, which includes a wide range of existing packages and configurations. This integration allows Spacemacs users to benefit from the vast resources available within the Emacs community and take advantage of additional functionalities for various programming languages and workflows. SpaceVim focuses more on providing a simplified and self-contained experience, relying less on external packages and configurations.

In summary, SpaceVim offers a lightweight and minimalistic Vim-based experience with easy configuration and a streamlined interface, while Spacemacs provides a comprehensive and feature-rich Emacs-based environment with a wider range of customization options and extensive community support.

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Pros of Spacemacs
Pros of SpaceVim
  • 14
    Advanced support for Vim key bindings
  • 12
  • 10
    Easy setup
  • 10
    Never have to touch the mouse
  • 7
    Community-driven configuration
  • 7
  • 6
  • 5
  • 4
    Fast-paced development
  • 4
  • 4
    Nice UI
  • 2
    Git Integration
  • 1
  • 4
    Easy to get started with
  • 4
    Easy to update
  • 3
    Attractive default theme
  • 3
    Realtime Guide
  • 2
    Setting up language servers just works
  • 2
    Better default

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What is Spacemacs?

Since version 0.101.0 and later Spacemacs totally abolishes the frontiers between Vim and Emacs. The user can now choose his/her preferred editing style and enjoy all the Spacemacs features. Even better, it is possible to dynamically switch between the two styles seamlessly which makes it possible for programmers with different styles to do seat pair programming using the same editor.

What is SpaceVim?

SpaceVim is a Modular configuration, a bundle of custom settings and plugins, for Vim. It got inspired by spacemacs.

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