I prefer[^1] to parse code and literature with my mind and eyes, not weird highlighting. So I usually have syntax highlighting off. But having commented out code look different is really helpful. If you would like that kind of setup, drop

" Turn off all syntax highlighting except comments and errors which are actually useful.
set t_Co=256
syntax on
highlight Comment    cterm=italic ctermfg=none
highlight Error      ctermfg=yellow
highlight Constant   ctermfg=none
highlight Identifier ctermfg=none
highlight Statement  ctermfg=none
highlight PreProc    ctermfg=none
highlight Type       ctermfg=none
highlight Special    ctermfg=none
highlight Underlined ctermfg=none

into your .vimrc If you use gvim instead of vim at the console, you need to replace those ctermfg's with guifg's.

[^1]: Not anymore (2015).

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