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Can I use ST3 yet? Migrating to Sublime Text 3

So, can I move to Sublime Text 3 yet? 

I’ve had this question asked quite a few times over the past month so I thought I would write up a quick post on my answer: probably.

Since my last “First Look” post on Sublime Text 3, 5 months have past and a lot has changed. Updates have been flying out, producing a faster and more stable Sublime Text 3.  Since then the beta has been opened to the public, so if you are still checking Sublime out, you can give ST3 a shot.


All themes, including my Cobalt2, work flawlessly from ST2 to ST3. No worries here!

Package Control, Plugins and Packages

The reason we all didn’t switch to ST3 the day it was released is because we had to wait for packages to be updated to Python 3.

In my experience, most of my packages have been migrated over, enough that I’m comftable using ST3 as my daily driver. If you are wondering about a certain fringe package, check the community wiki to see if it is supported in ST3. https://github.com/wbond/sublime_package_control/wiki/Sublime-Text-3-Compatible-Packages

Package control is the lifeline of all Sublime Text plugins and packages. Will Bond has been working hard to adapt package control to work both on ST2 and ST3. Installing Package control for ST3 is a little tricky, and migrating your old packages over can be a pain. I fiddled with it a few times and have come up with a quick method to do so.

I recommend you spend 9 mins watching the video but TLDR:

1) Use git to install the python3 branch of Package Control. Step by step instructions available here.
2) Move over all your folders in Sublime Text 2/Packages/ to Sublime Text 3/Packages/ except two: Default and Package Control

Here is a quick video on the easiest way to do so:

Terminal subl command

If you are a heavy terminal user you will also need to switch over your terminal command to now open files in Sublime Text 3.

First delete the old one: sudo rm  /bin/subl

Then create the new one: sudo ln -s "/Applications/Sublime Text.app/Contents/SharedSupport/bin/subl" /bin/subl

Sublime Text Book

I am still working on my Sublime Text Power User book and making excellent progress. I want to thank everyone who has emailed me asking about a launch date, I expect everything to be out in the next month or two. If you are interested, sign up below and I’ll be sure to let you know when it launches!

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18 Responses to Can I use ST3 yet? Migrating to Sublime Text 3

  1. Paul Smith says:

    Can you add details of changing the terminal “subl” command from ST2 to use ST3?

    • wesbos says:

      Sure, just added it!

      • Paul Smith says:

        Great thanks. I eneded up doing that but what confused me was looking at the ST3 docs. They descrive it as a fresh install and that references ~/bin rather than /bin. I was trying and trying to re-do the symlink but didn’t initially understand that it was a different path.

  2. Arturo Linares says:

    Package Control knows which packages are installed after copying all the packages manually?

    • wesbos says:

      As far as I can see, yes. If you do Package Control: List Packages you will see a list of all packages.

  3. Been using ST3 full-time for a few weeks now, and it’s glorious! 🙂

  4. John says:

    I am getting:

    “It appears core Sublime Text 3 packages are being overriden by older ones from Sublime Text 2.

    Sublime Text will not function correctly until these are removed.”

    Is there a good way to see which it is referring to and fix?

  5. Pingback: » Sublime Text 3 install notes

  6. Phuwanart Larpmark says:

    Thank you!!!

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  8. Pingback: how to get Sublime Text 2 plugins to work in Sublime Text 3 | DiscVentionsTech

  9. Doug Neiner says:

    So… approaching a year later, I finally upgraded to ST3. Thanks for the guide!

  10. Rafael Oliveira says:

    Wesbos, what are the main advantages of migrating from ST2 to ST3?
    I have a license of ST2 and would like to know why should I upgrade to ST3.
    I see a change log on ST3 webpage but what I really would like to know is the MAIN changes.

    thx! Nice post, btw!

  11. Francis Fish says:


    The Package Admin now installs with a paste of some code into the python runtime.

  12. mendo says:

    Awesome! THanks so much for this

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