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I tried the steps from "Vector Tools Missing in QGIS 1.8 Ubuntu". Most of the tools under "Vector" are missing from my recent installation of QGIS 2.18.2, so I am unable to clip, buffer, make Voronoi polygons, etc. Python appears to be running correctly and I have checked to ensure my plugins are updated and enabled. For some reason "ftools" plugin is not availabe when I search for it in Plugin Manager under "All".

EDIT: I did a clean reinstall of QGIS and this fixed the problem. I think there was an old version of GDAL causing the problem.

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    As of late, qgis made processing a core plugin. Can you try removing the processing plugin found in your users folder? Not sure how it works on Mac, but on linux it would be found in ~/.qgis2/python/plugins/processing - to be safe you can simply move it out of there for a test instead of deleting it. Let me know if that works.
    – SaultDon
    Jan 23, 2017 at 20:51

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This has been popping up a lot lately, but If I recall from previous questions, the answer is to activate the QGIS algorithms in the Processing > Options > Providers > QGIS Algorithms box:

enter image description here

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  • Thanks, but in my case this was not the problem. It did help me access a lot more tools once I did fix the problem, though.
    – arabiccode
    Jan 26, 2017 at 20:19

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