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FAR with LUA -- Version 3.0 of File Manager

News Less is More: Orthodox File Managers as Sysadmin IDE Recommended Links OFM Book History of FAR development Orthodox file managers standards OFM Standard 1999
FAR Keyboard Map Far Keyboard Macros FAR Macrovariables Far Keyboard Macros Far Plugins Tips Etc

FAR written by Eugene Roshal  is a very impressive -- simply great-- classic OFM Win32 API implementation. Most of its features were available in version 1.5 that was released in late 1997, but now they are much better integrated, debugged and polished. Initially it was shareware implementation, now it is a leading source implementation with BSD license. The best open source implementation of OFM manager in Windows environment available...

It was actively developed approximately until 2001 (v. 1.65) but the author probably decided that this distracts him from the RAR -- his main project and moved development to the selected group of contributors.  Like many other OFMs it looks like it might not survive the defection of the principal developer. Currently the development is stalled is for several years the only new version available is beta version 1.70.  Versions 2.0 that was released a couple of years ago was mostly conversion to Unicode and has problems with compatibility of old plugins. Version 3.0 released in  November 2012 integrates some improvements, but again it is clear that project is severely lacking resources. Among notable changes in version 3.0:

Far was definitely influenced by VC, DN, MC and FC. At the same time is it a very clean implementation with its own "face" and an excellent compatibility with OFM doctrine. Implementation by a very talented programmer. Very strong implementation of FTP VFS, archive VFS ( Eugene Roshal is also the author of RAR -- one of the best compression programs on the market).

Built-in editor can work with Windows Clipboard. Some new useful keys were added to the standard OFM keymap. For example the key to insert  file name with a full path (Ctrl-F). From the very beginning there was keyboard macro support (see  Far Keyboard Macros )

Panelize command and temp VFS support (Like in NC5 temp VFS is most useful as a target of the panel command from search) are implemented and can be used (via macro) to provide an Xtree VFS implementation (just search *.* everything in the subtree). But it would be better to implement Xtree VFS directly binding it to Ctrl-D. 

Unfortunately the temporary panel stores full path not just a file name so in order to use it it's better make panels asymmetrical in width with target for panelize wider that regular one (Ctrl-Left arrow or Ctrl-Right arrow).

FAR has one of the best good history implementation including history of searches, selections, visited folders and viewed/edited files. Currently it can be considered as a leader among the 32-bit classic OFM implementations.

Despite being the leader in classic OFM implementations FAR is a relative newcomer and is one of  the youngest implementations discussed in this chapter.

The greatest idea implemented in FAR is a concept of plug-ins -- a concept similar to Netscape.  In this respect1 FAR was pioneer implementer of this feature. For a long time FAR had no competitors and was the only OFM with a rich set of plug-in. Several dozens plug-ins for FAR were available almost instantly. Now several other OFMs use this concept too (Total Commander in one example)

The greatest idea implemented in FAR is a concept of plug-ins -- a concept similar to Netscape.  In this respect FAR is a unique OFM and until recently has no competitors (since appox 2001 (v. 4.5) Total Commander now uses this concept too). Several dozens plug-ins for FAR already exist.  See an official list of plugins for more information. This is a revolutionary feature that makes FAR a class of its own.

If you are a programmer, you will feel how good Eugene is -- FAR behave very intelligently even in very complex situations.

But FAR is showing its age as it was not greatly changed since version 1.65 -- the last Eugene Roshal has relases before passing the codebase tot he team of maintainers. One major drawback is outdated system of macrovariables. Also built-in editor does not have user menu implemented.

Again, I would like to stress that currently codebase of FAR is open sourced. It is the only top implementation in Windows world with open sourced codebase and as such it is guarantied a long software life span.   

Among advanced features that FAR support are:


It would be nice if you can click on current file in the panel information line (last line in the panel) OFM should select all files with this extension and place extension in the select history list.  Double clicking should produce selection of the files with just this extension (this is achievable via Ctrl-I, but clumsy and thus underused).

Also the file history is implemented differently from panel and does not support regular panel operations. sorting and quick search might be very useful in this panel. Generally this is where FAR is largely inferior to XTree implementations.

FAR deviations from OFM1999 and shortcomings

FAR 1.62 deviates from OFM1999 standard is several minor ways. 

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Old News ;-)

[Mar 05, 2020] Far Manager as IDE - Codeforces

Mar 05, 2020 |
  1. Deep Thoughts with Richard Schoen: Using Midnite Commander ... commander -on-ibm-i-via.html

    Jan 14, 2018 · If you used Norton Commander back in the day you probably remember this DOS utility with a side -by-side directory list. It saved my life back in the early days of PCs. I discovered Midnite Commander a few years ago which functions as a functional equivalent to Norton Commander in Linux. There is also an AIX version so now that I have SSH working I thought I would give it a try.

[Mar 29, 2017] Far PlugRing - category information

Mar 29, 2017 |

Regular Expression Search and Replace
- Regular Expression search/replace from panels - Grep, Renaming, Renumbering in panels - Regular Expression search/replace in Editor - Editor filtering, transliteration - Scripting languages support - Many, many more
File tags management
Registry browser
This FAR plugin allows you to do with registry keys and variables exactly the same things as with directories and files.There are two operation modes: "keys as directories" and "keys as files". The keys treated as files have the standard .REG format; REGEDIT.EXE is called automatically to transform keys to files and to import them back to registry (when editing or copying)...
This Far Manager plugin allows to browse and edit Windows Registry.
Rating : 0 | Updated : 01-10-2014 | Total downloads : 8221
View and edit tables content of SQLite database. Latest versions are available on the site
Rating : 0 | Updated : 25-09-2014 | Total downloads : 9243
The simple network sniffer that runs as a plugin for Far Manager. Intercepted IP4 packets are represented as files in the emulated file system. Latest versions are available on the site
Rating : 0 | Updated : 25-09-2014 | Total downloads : 3011
Показ информации о EXE/DLL файлах в универсальной колонке (C0)
Rating : 0 | Updated : 21-09-2014 | Total downloads : 337
LUA File List
Генерация списка файлов по пользовательскому шаблону.
Rating : 0 | Updated : 20-09-2014 | Total downloads : 804
LuaFAR for Editor
LuaFAR for Editor: organizer of user's scripts and script packets
Rating : 0 | Updated : 11-09-2014 | Total downloads : 4645
Environment Manager
Allows configuring and easy enabling/disabling of environment variable groups.
Rating : 0 | Updated : 28-08-2014 | Total downloads : 3581
Air Brush
Air Brush is a fast syntax highlighting plugin for FAR Manager.
Rating : 32 | Updated : 10-09-2013 | Total downloads : 2250
Plugin that allows you to run processes with various privileges. Analogue command "sudo" / "su" in linux. Relevant for MS Vista/Seven systems with enabled UAC.
mc-light dark theme from sergxt
mc-light dark theme Mc-light (aka midnight commander MP ) is lightweight unix file manager. Its theme is awesome I've ever seen. Original screenshots you can see at I'd changed only cursor color to green.
User manager
With this plugin you can:- manage access control lists for files and folders;- manage shares;- manage local and global users and groups;- manage rights.
Rating : 100 | Updated : 23-03-2013 | Total downloads : 2699 New system option Smart folder panel monitor...

by Mauro72 " Tue 26 Jun, 2012 22:22

More info of this option please. So i can understand and translate to my language.
Enabling this option, i can't see the effect.

Re: New system option: Smart folder panel monitor...

by DrKnS " Tue 26 Jun, 2012 23:00

If enabled, far will not monitor changes in folders that are currently opened on panels if it's window not in focus.
Panels will be updated only when you switch back into far.

As a result, these folders will not be locked by far and you will be able to move or delete them using some other programs. How to import Far2 configuration into Far3

by thorsten " Sat 24 Dec, 2011 14:24

I'd like to try the new, coming Far3, but Far3 uses local files to store its settings (and not the Registry). How can I export my settings in Far2 to be able to import it in Far3?


Posts: 1
Joined: Sat 24 Dec, 2011 14:18
Last Visit: Tue 27 Dec, 2011 18:15

Re: How to import Far2 configuration into Far3

by Игорь Юдинцев " Mon 26 Dec, 2011 07:19

%FARHOME%\SaveSettings.cmd exports the settings to a .REG file.
This set of Perl scripts imports FAR 2 settings into FAR 3 either from a .REG file or directly from the registry.
(the same scripts as EXE's).
Игорь Юдинцев
Posts: 612
Joined: Sun 03 Apr, 2005 22:00
Last Visit: Fri 30 Nov, 2012 23:36
Location: Казань

Re: How to import Far2 configuration into Far3

by HaRT " Mon 26 Dec, 2011 13:24

Discussion (in Russian)

Фар есть инструмент, а не нянька. © 2009 DrKnS

Posts: 5040
Joined: Tue 30 Aug, 2005 17:21
Last Visit: Fri 30 Nov, 2012 20:58
Location: Санкт-Петербург

Re: How to import Far2 configuration into Far3

by Anakunda " Thu 29 Dec, 2011 11:10

I have tried 2x3_converterC and it seems to transfer most of old settings successfully, but the import was not perfect.
Transparency flags of Files highlighting and sort groups were not imported, No panel modes were imported.
Associations, color scheme look like imported fully.
Environment variables were removed from folder shortcuts.

Last edited by Anakunda on Thu 29 Dec, 2011 11:21, edited 1 time in total.

Posts: 58
Joined: Sun 01 Feb, 2009 09:22
Last Visit: Sat 24 Nov, 2012 20:58

Re: How to import Far2 configuration into Far3

by Игорь Юдинцев " Thu 29 Dec, 2011 11:15

Check for newer versions: viewtopic.php?f=3&t=6809&start=75#p87749
Игорь Юдинцев
Posts: 612
Joined: Sun 03 Apr, 2005 22:00
Last Visit: Fri 30 Nov, 2012 23:36
Location: Казань

Re: How to import Far2 configuration into Far3

by Anakunda " Thu 29 Dec, 2011 11:31

Tried the latest version and file panel modes still seem reset to default. I have customized some panel modes already then used the importer (import all).
Don't know why but all panel modes were reset to default layout after conversion.
Posts: 58
Joined: Sun 01 Feb, 2009 09:22
Last Visit: Sat 24 Nov, 2012 20:58

Re: How to import Far2 configuration into Far3

by mrQQ " Tue 06 Nov, 2012 19:30

how to transfer the main configuration, e.g. all the options etc?

[Nov 17, 2012] Far PlugRing - plugin information

Title : LuaFAR Search
Description : Search and replace in the editor and from panels.
Votes : 0
Rating : 0
Created : 30-10-2012
Added : 16-11-2012
Updated : 16-11-2012
Total downloads : 13
Forum url :
Authors : Shmuel Zeigerman
Categories : Search, Editor.Find, S&R, Far 3.x, x86, x64, Unicode
Programming language : C/C++, Lua

[Nov 17, 2012] Far PlugRing - plugin information

Title : Visual Compare
Description : Визуальное сравнение файлов и каталогов
Votes : 0
Rating : 0
Created : 22-03-2010
Added : 15-11-2012
Updated : 16-11-2012
Total downloads : 0
Forum url :
Plugin homepage url :
Authors : Max Rusov
Categories : Shell, Far 2.x, Far 3.x, x86, x64, Unicode
Programming language : Pascal/Delphi
Detailed description : Плагин предназначен для сравнения каталогов и текстовый файлов. Результаты сравнения отображаются в виде наглядного двухколоночного списка, в котором все различия выделены цветом.

[Nov 17, 2012] Far PlugRing - plugin information

Title : LuaFAR for Editor
Description : LuaFAR for Editor: организатор скриптов и пакетов скриптов пользователя.
Votes : 0
Rating : 0
Created : 05-11-2008
Added : 14-11-2012
Updated : 16-11-2012
Total downloads : 43
Forum url :
Plugin homepage url :
Authors : Shmuel Zeigerman
Categories : Editor, Addons, Far 3.x, x86, x64, Unicode
Programming language : Lua

[Nov 11, 2012] The first stable build of Far Manager 3.0 is now available

Integrates LUA. That's a pioneering development !!!. Far Manager settings and native (3.x) plugins settings are stored in SQLiteDB. See also FarManager - conemu-maximus5 - Windows Console Emulator, Far Manager plugins - Google Project Hosting

Among notable changes:

[Nov 11, 2012] In versions 1.xx and 2.xx Filter does not work if you try to select range of dates as a filtering criteria

The implementation is still very raw and undebugged. In a way it is unusable.

But there are two great ideas in FAR implementation:

[Nov 11, 2012] FAR allows one panel to be full screen and the other half screen. In this case tab essentially expands the other panel to full screen

This is an interesting consequence of having wide mode and it is also present in MC. I come across it quite accidentally testing mc for compatibility with OFM1999 standard.

[Nov 1, 2012] My new favorite tool, the Far File manager

Jun 21, 2010 |Just A Programmer

Strange things excite me, things even other programmers would consider strange to be excited about. Every once in a while, something comes along that excites me in multiple ways. One of those things is the orthodox file manager, Far.

The far manager was developed by Eugene Roshal, who created WinRar. It was originally shareware, but has recently been made open source.

I've known about Far for a while. I first discovered it looking for a file manager that could handle a directory with thousands of files at a job where I was doing ETL operations. It was installed on my machine by a developer of ReSharper who was troubleshooting a very strange bug on my system remotely. Also I worked in a company where several Russian's used it daily.

However, while I toyed with it several times, I never took the time to really get to know it until a few weeks ago. By really getting to know it I meant installing several plugins, and experiencing the "theres a plugin for that" joy several times over.

Overview Far is a command line based file manager with two columns and a command prompt. The command prompt behaves similar to cmd.exe, but not exactly. For example, in a standard command prompt typing "cd e:foo" whike you are on the c: drive will change the current directory on the E: drive but you still have to type e: to get to that folder. In Far typing cd e:foo does both. One other difference, that bothered my unix sensibilities, is "cd ~" changes to the folder that far is installed to. In unix this changes to the users home directory so I was expecting similar behavior. There are probably many other useful command line enhancements that I've yet to discover yet as well.

Far File Manager Installing Far and plugins. Far is available on There is a 1.7 and 2.0 version. The 2.0 version supports unicode asnd the 1.7 version us the legacy ascii version. You can get 64 bit binaries for both versions. You can install far via an MSI, or a 7-zip archive.

After you install Far, you will want to install several plugins. I will highlight my favorite ones here. ote that while binaries compiled against the far 1.7 SDK will work with Far 2.0, 32 bit plugins will not work with 64 bit far. For this reason you probably want to install the 32 bit version of Far, unless you are like me and like pain.

Except where mentioned, these plugins can either be found at the plugring site, or for 64 bit binaries, the evil programmers google code project. I will go through some of the plugins I like below.

7-Zip As far as I know, there is no 64 bit version of this available yet. However, I probably just haven't found it yet. If you install far without this plugin, you can browse the contents of most archives in Far. However, you will not be able to copy files out of them. I've yet to try getting the built-in archive support full working. However, with all the archives supported by 7-zip, I'm in no hurry to.

Event Viewer This works like a text mode only version of eventvwr.exe. I've yet to find a truly compelling case to use it over the standar gui version. However, its nice to have an alternative tool for any job.

Service Manager This is really convenient. It lists drivers and services temperately. It also allows you to edit things you can't in the mmc snap-in, such as the path to the binary the service executes. Finally, it lets you create a new service. You rarely need to do this, but when you do its hard to find a good tool for the job.

User Manager This one is really useful, especially on XP Home edition. Functionality is similar to the "Local Users and Groups" section of the Computer Management MMC snap-in on XP Pro. The thing I really love about it is you can set the "User must change password at next logon" flag on a user in XP Home Edition. I spent the good part of a train ride from Penn Station to Islip on Friday failing to achieve this in other ways. I'm not saying its the only way this task can be done. I'm just saying that this plugin will let me accomplish this task easily.

User Must Change Password At Next Logon WinSCP The arbitrariness of alphabetical order has put what is perhaps the most useful plugin last. There is a GUI scp/sftp client for windows called WinSCP. The author also made a Far plug-in based on the same code.

This plug-in, along with the 7-zip one, also take advantage of one of the most powerful intrinsic features of Far. With Far, you can copy any file from one panel to another, regardless of whether the panels contain a local folder, a unc path, the inside of an archive, or a sftp folder. Because of this, Far is a great tool for moving files to and from remote servers.

Conclusion Far is a great file manager, and I will spend more time getting to know it. I think all programmers and sys-admins that work with Windows should get familiar with it as well.


No syntax highlight - useless tool
Justin Dearing, Programmer, Database guy, open source contributor

Are you referring to the text editor? If so, there is a colorer plugin for it

Also if text editor features are important to you, you can use an external editor by pressing Alt+F4 instead of F4. To see how to configure the text editor in VIM visit

Quite frankly, I am not estatic with the built in text editor. However, thats not what I use farmanager for. Far more useful for me is browsing remote unc paths and the sftp client.

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