Replace tree

This bash function gives you a better tree optimizing for the height of the screen:

function tree {
     br -c :pt "$@"


This function supports most broot arguments:

tree with args

Search deeper

The search normally stops after some time, or when it found enough matches (that is a few times what can be displayed, in order to only show the ones with the best ranking).

Sometimes, you want a more exhaustive search:

Then, you can hit ctrls, which does a :total_search and ensures the whole tree is searched and all matches are displayed.

The downside is it takes time and the most relevant matches may be hard to find among hundred of less relevant ones which wouldn't be shown otherwise.

A generic fuzzy finder

The goal here is to have a function you can use in shell to give you a path.

Step 1: create a file ~/.config/broot/select.toml with this content:

verbs: [
        invocation: "ok"
        key: "enter"
        leave_broot: true
        execution: ":print_path"
        apply_to: "file"
invocation = "ok"
key = "enter"
leave_broot = true
execution = ":print_path"
apply_to = "file"

Step 2: create a shortcut of some type, for example using ~/.bash_aliases

alias bo="br --conf ~/.config/broot/select.toml"

Step 3: you can then use broot as a selector in other commands:

echo $(bo)


echo $(bo some/path)

Here, the configuration file was used to ensure you can select a file with the enter key.

You may use the same configuration file to also specify colors to remember yourself you're not in a standard broot.

dcd : Deep fuzzy cd

When you want to cd to a deep directory, using br is fast and easy enough:

But when you frequently go to a few specific places, you may prefer a shortcut.

As broot can be driven by commands, you can define this function:

# deep fuzzy cd
function dcd {
    br --only-folders --cmd "$1;:cd"

(paste this for example in your .bashrc)

This is the "I'm feeling lucky" of broot, you can use it to directly jump to directories you know, when you don't need the interactive search of br.


dcd ruleset

Focus a new directory but keep the current filter

When you hit enter on a directory, it's focused and the filter is reset.

If you want to keep the filter, for example to search deeper, you may use :focus instead (or you can bind it to a key shortcut).

Go to the directory containing the selected file

Suppose you filter to find a file, and it's in a deeper directory, you may want to see it "more closely", that is, keeping the filter, to make its parent directory the current root.

This can be done with the :focus verb which can be called with ctrlf.

Run a script or program from broot

If your system is normally configured, doing alt-enter on an executable will close broot and executes the file.

Change standard file opening

When you hit enter on a file, broot asks the system to open the file. It's usually the best solution as it selects the program according to the file's type following settings you set system wide.

You might still wish to change that, for example when you're on a server without xdg-open or equivalent.

Here's an example of configuration changing the behaviour on open:

verbs: [
        invocation: edit
        key: enter
        external: "$EDITOR {file}"
        leave_broot: false
        apply_to: file
invocation = "edit"
key = "enter"
external = "$EDITOR {file}"
leave_broot = false
apply_to = "file"

(the apply_to line ensures this verb isn't called when the selected line is a directory)

If you need to use a different application for some kind(s) of file, you may additionally filter by extension.

Git Status

If you want to start navigating with a view of the files which changed, you may do

br -ghc :gs

Then just hitting the esc key will show you the normal unfiltered broot view.

(note: this isn't equivalent to git status. Most notably, removed files aren't displayed)

From there you may use the :gd verb (:git_diff) to open the selection into your favourite diff viewer.

If you want more: Use broot and meld to diff before commit.

Use negative filters

Here's a (real) example of how negative filters and combination can help you navigate.

Here's the initial view of a directory in which you land:

initial view

Type !txt to hide unwanted files:

without txt

(it's filtered as you type so you stop at !tx, it's enough)

Now let's add & then some letters of what we want.

on target

We can also select the desired file with arrow keys at this point.

When you grasped the basic logic of combined filters, navigation is incredibly efficient.

Use composite searches in preview

You can apply composition and negation to searches in the preview panel which is convenient when filtering, for example, a log file.

In this example I show lines containing "youtube" but not "txt" nor " 0 ms".

search log

Escape key

Broot usage, just like vim, relies a lot on the esc key. If you're a frequent user of the terminal, you may want to remap an easy to reach and otherwise useless key (for example caps-lock) to esc.

This brings a lot of comfort, not just in broot.

Vim integration/plugin

In case you want to use broot for opening files fuzzily in vim (and potentially replace netrw), check out: broot.vim