Git jump in Neovim with Telescope

  • git
  • neovim
  • telescope
22 Mar 2023

When Git 2.40 was released on 12th March 2023, Github published again a blog article about the highlights of this release. One aspect that truly piqued my curiosity and excitement was the mention of git jump! As the Github blog article explains it:

git jump is an optional tool that ships with Git in its contrib directory. git jump wraps other Git commands, like git grep and feeds their results into Vim’s quickfix list. This makes it possible to write something like git jump grep foo and have Vim be able to quickly navigate between all matches of “foo” in your project.

The new thing in Git 2.40 from the release notes:

“git jump” (in contrib/) learned to present the “quickfix list” to its standard output (instead of letting it consumed by the editor it invokes), and learned to also drive emacs/emacsclient.

First of all, before reading this article I wasn’t aware of git jump at all. It’s a pretty nice command! A few months ago I quickly hacked together a Ruby script to achieve the same thing but with worse performance of course.

Second of all, having standard output for the git jump command enables easy usage in other tools. I will present one such use case in this blog article.

My daily code editor is Neovim with heavy usage of Telescope. One of all the amazing builtin pickers of Telescope is a picker for jumping to files that are listed via git status. This is nice, but it’s missing one important part: jumping to specific hunks. If you have a lot of changes in one file, the builtin git status does not really help.

Git status in Telescope git status only shows the file once, even if there are 3 different hunks.

Enter git jump or more precisely git jump diff:

As git jump lives in git/contrib, it’s not available by default. In order to use it, you can simply create an alias in your Git config for it.

# Alias if you're on a Mac and you're using Homebrew to install Git
  jump = "!$(brew --prefix git)/share/git-core/contrib/git-jump/git-jump"
$ git jump
usage: git jump [--stdout] <mode> [<args>]

Jump to interesting elements in an editor.
The <mode> parameter is one of:

diff: elements are diff hunks. Arguments are given to diff.

merge: elements are merge conflicts. Arguments are ignored.

grep: elements are grep hits. Arguments are given to git grep or, if
      configured, to the command in `jump.grepCmd`.

ws: elements are whitespace errors. Arguments are given to diff --check.

If the optional argument `--stdout` is given, print the quickfix
lines to standard output instead of feeding it to the editor.

With the --stdout option added, we get a quickfix style formatted list of Git hunks that we can use in scripts. Because Telescope is easy extensible, we are able to write a function that runs git jump for us and presents us with a Telescope picker. Here is the Lua code for it:

local git_hunks = function()
      finder = require("telescope.finders").new_oneshot_job({ "git", "jump", "--stdout", "diff" }, {
        entry_maker = function(line)
          local filename, lnum_string = line:match("([^:]+):(%d+).*")

          -- I couldn't find a way to use grep in new_oneshot_job so we have to filter here.
          -- return nil if filename is /dev/null because this means the file was deleted.
          if filename:match("^/dev/null") then
            return nil

          return {
            value = filename,
            display = line,
            ordinal = line,
            filename = filename,
            lnum = tonumber(lnum_string),
      sorter = require("telescope.sorters").get_generic_fuzzy_sorter(),
      previewer = require("telescope.config").values.grep_previewer({}),
      results_title = "Git hunks",
      prompt_title = "Git hunks",
      layout_strategy = "flex",
    }, {})

vim.keymap.set("n", "<Leader>gh", git_hunks, {})

– With this, you can enjoy the power of Telescope with git jump :) –

Git jump in Telescope git jump diff shows the file 3 times, once for each hunk.


  • New files won’t show up with git jump.
  • The “Grep Preview” does not show Git colors but only normal color highlighting.