I compiled and installed vim 8 using the following commands:

./configure --prefix=/usr/local \
            --with-features=huge \
            --enable-fail-if-missing \
            --enable-multibyte \
            --enable-rubyinterp \
            --enable-pythoninterp \
            --enable-python3interp \
            --with-python3-config-dir=/usr/lib/python3.5/config-3.5m-x86_64-linux-gnu \
            --enable-perlinterp \
            --enable-luainterp \
            --enable-gui=auto \
            --enable-fontset \
            --enable-cscope | tee configure.log

make VIMRUNTIMEDIR=/usr/local/share/vim/vim80

checkinstall --default

and it works. I can use gvim and I check the version and everything looked fine for a couple of days. Then suddenly, I can no longer find gvim, only terminal vim and the version seems to have been downgraded to 7.4.1689.

This has happened several times but I'm unable to figure out what is triggering this. Can someone please shed some light on this?


EDIT: Updating the system seems to be the issue. This happens after every system update.


This was happening because the version of vim in the repos is 2:7.4.1689 while checkinstall was using the date-time string as the version by default 20161021. Thus, the version in the repos was considered as newer (Vim 7.4) and was trying to upgrade the older (Vim 8) package.

This was fixed by explicitly specifying the version in checkinstall as 2:8.0.46

Launchpad bug and recommended solution here.

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