Powerline shows git branch information for a buffer that are under version control vc-mode. Only when vc-mode is set for a buffer the Git branch information is displayed. When inside dired there is no Version Control information shown. Is there a way to enable vc-mode for dired so that at least the branch information is shown without needing to patch powerline.el ?

To visualize what I mean: This is the powerline for buffers that have vc-mode set: enter image description here The powerline for the dired buffer has no vc-mode set and the branch information is missing: enter image description here

1 Answer 1


One possibility is to patch powerline.el using:

modified   .emacs.d/lisp/lib/powerline.el
@@ -473,14 +473,27 @@ static char * %s[] = {
                 'local-map (make-mode-line-mouse-map
                             'mouse-1 'mode-line-widen))))

+(require 'vc-git)
 ;;;###autoload (autoload 'powerline-vc "powerline")
 (defpowerline powerline-vc
-  (when (and (buffer-file-name (current-buffer)) vc-mode)
+  (cond
+   ((and (symbolp 'major-mode) (string-equal major-mode 'dired-mode)
+    (vc-git-root default-directory))
+    (progn
+      (vc-mode-line default-directory 'Git)
+      (format " %s%s"
+         (char-to-string #xe0a0)
+         (format-mode-line '(vc-mode vc-mode)))))
+   ((and (buffer-file-name (current-buffer)) vc-mode)
     (if (and window-system (not powerline-gui-use-vcs-glyph))
         (format-mode-line '(vc-mode vc-mode))
       (format " %s%s"
               (char-to-string #xe0a0)
-              (format-mode-line '(vc-mode vc-mode))))))
+              (format-mode-line '(vc-mode vc-mode))))
+    )
+   ))

 ;;;###autoload (autoload 'powerline-encoding "powerline")
 (defpowerline powerline-encoding

This makes revision appear inside dired. Using vc-git-root to verify it is a git directory and (vc-mode-line default-directory 'Git) to initialize vc-mode. I wonder weather there is a better solution than this?

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