Bulk install packages in Sublime Text

A couple of weeks ago I was setting up a new laptop and kept putting off installing Sublime Text (my code editor of choice) because I knew that it would also involve about fifteen minutes patiently working through my curated list of packages (add-ons / plugins), installing each one by one.

There’s got to be a simpler way, I suddenly thought. Sublime Text saves me so much time doing other stuff automatically, surely they’ve thought about this too.

I was right.

In fact, front-end developer extraordinaire Paul Irish asked this very question back in 2012.

How do it it

So, here is how to do it:

  1. Install Sublime Text (2 or 3).
  2. Install Package Control.
  3. Create a JSON file listing the "installed_packages" you want (see below) and save it to Packages/User/Package Control.sublime-settings.
  4. Restart Sublime Text and allow it to pick up and install the new packages.

Just be aware of any packages that need dependences that Sublime Text cannot install, for example Git or Zeal (offline documentation browser).

Save locations

You can easily find the save location by going to Preferences > Browse Packages.

On Windows the save location is:
C:\Users\[YOUR USERNAME]\AppData\Roaming\Sublime Text 3\Packages\User

Package Control.sublime-settings

This is my installed packages list from work and home; I keep a copy in Dropbox so that I can keep the two in sync.

The names listed are exactly as they are listed in the Package Control: List Packages list.

    "installed_packages": [
        "Bootstrap 3 Snippets",
        "Color Highlighter",
        "CSS Color Converter",
        "JSHint Gutter",
        "Markdown Preview",
        "Package Control",
        "Search WordPress Codex or QueryPosts",
        "Status Bar File Size",
        "Theme - Minimal",
        "Tomorrow Color Schemes",
        "View In Browser",
        "WordPress Developer Resources",
        "WordPress Generate Salts",


Needless to say, doing that made installing Sublime Text so much easier and quicker.

I will try to keep this list updated, as much for my own benefit as any one else’s.

GitHub repository

I have stored my most up-to-date settings in a GitHub repository: sublime-text-settings.

IE Death March

Can’t remember where I first saw this … or maybe someone sent me the URL.  Anyway, IE Death March is a website with the following goal:

It’s time to put a deadline on dropping IE6, and I say that time is now, and the deadline should be soon… say like, March 2009.

A worthy and noble cause that’s scuppered by institutions and businesses who still run Windows 2000 as their operating system of choice, who can’t upgrade to IE7 (like that’s any better!) and won’t move over to Firefox because you can’t easily lock it down in the same way as IE.

Still, given that I spend up to 75% of my development time just trying to get code to work in IE6 all power to the campaign.