Emacs Quick Reference
Consider moving this to just a reference section. Vim style is the default approach for this book and whist the Emacs bindings are still available in Spacemacs, they are not as focused on great user experience as Vim.
As Spacemacs is built on Emacs, its worth spending a little time getitng uses to working with Emacs.
Here is a short summary of what you need to know. For more details use the built in docs with
M-x helm-spacemacs or
M-m h SPC.
emacs as a command line or a desktop icon.
The 'meta' key is usually the 'Alt' or 'Start Menu' key on your keyboard.
C-<char> : control + <char> M-<char> : meta + <char> SPC : space RET : return / enter DEL : delete or backspace ESC : escape; ESC <char> is the same as M-<char> buffer : Everything you use, edit or read in emacs. This can be an open file, the results of a compilation, your mail and several other things, like e.g. a shell window. mark : It is a position in a buffer, that is pushed in a special stack, when jumping in the buffer etc. It can be pushed manually. mode : Every buffer has a mode. A mode can have special functions, colouring, indentions etc. minibuffer : The line at the bottom, where you can enter commands after typing M-x. Most of these commands can be invoked by pressing *lot of* keys, but don't worry... from now on, I'm going to introduce some of these functions, with the actual command name in round brackets. point : the actual cursor position
Managing files, buffers and windows
C-x C-f (find-file) : opens a file C-x 4 C-f (find-file-other-window) : opens a file in the next window C-x k (kill-buffer) : closes the current buffer C-x C-c (save-buffers-kill-emacs) : asks whether it should save your files and exits C-x C-s (save-buffer) : saves the current buffer C-x C-w (write-file) : saves in a file of your choice C-x C-b (list-buffers) : lists and manages all open buffers, press ? for help C-x b (switch-to-buffer) : changes the current buffer C-x 4 b (switch-to-buffer-other-window) : changes the next window's buffer C-x 2 (split-window-vertically) : splits the current window vertically in half C-x 3 (split-window-horizontally): splits the current window horizontally in half C-x 1 (delete-other-windows) : closes every but the current window C-x 0 (delete-window) : closes the current window C-x o (other-window) : switches to the next window
C-SPC (set-mark-command) : sets the mark where the cursor is C-w (kill-region) : cuts the region from the mark till point to the clipboard M-w (kill-ring-save) : copies the region from the mark till point to the clipboard C-y (yank) : pastes from the clipboard C-a (beginning-of-line) : positions the cursor to the beginning of the line C-e (end-of-line) : positions the cursor to the end of the line C-t (transpose-chars) : swaps the last two characters M-t (transpose-words) : swaps the last two words C-x C-t (transpose-lines) : swaps the last two lines
Search and replace
If the search string contains uppercase letters, it will be case sensitive. Case sensitivity can be toggled with M-c during search in newer versions.
C-s (isearch-forward) : searches forward C-r (isearch-backward) : searches backward M-% (query-replace) : replaces a string wherever it occurs with another, and asks for permission everytime (replace-string) : replaces a string wherever it occurs with another
Other useful things
(set-variable) : sets the value of a variable C-h v (describe-variable) : displays the current value and the meaning of a variable C-h m (describe-mode) : describes the current mode and lists its functions and key combinations C-h f (describe-function) : explains what a function does C-g (keyboard-quit) : exits from the minibuffer C-h ? (help-for-help) : gives a help for using help commands C-_ (undo) : undoes the last change (man) : invokes the manual in the next window
||Convert region to lower case|
||Convert region to upper case|
||Capitalize the following word|
||Convert following word to upper case|
||Convert following word to lower case|
** The keybinding
M-l is bound to
markdow-demote in spacemacs
The ~/.emacs file
You can assign hot-keys for frequently used commands:
"(global-set-key key 'command)", e.g. I recommend the following:
(global-set-key "\C-cr" 'revert-buffer) ; C-c r reverts the file from disk (global-set-key [f12] 'compile) (global-set-key [f10] 'shell) (global-set-key [end] 'end-of-buffer) ; only for the new emacs (global-set-key [home] 'beginning-of-buffer) ; only for the new emacs
Mode-specific indention: TAB (indent-relative) : indents the current line C-M-\ (indent-region) : indents the selected region Modes are automatically entered, e.g. when you open a file of a known extension. To force a mode-change, you can type these: (latex-mode) : enters LaTeX mode (c++-mode) : enters C++ mode (ada-mode) : enters Ada mode (irchat) : enters IRC mode (IRChat 2.4+ needed) (rmail) : enters mail mode (gnus) : enters news-reading mode (tcl-mode) : enters TCL mode
I advise to use IRChat in a new frame (i.e. in another window): (new-frame) : opens a new window (only in X/Windows)
(shell) : starts a terminal in the window (ediff) : compares two files and makes changes (gdb) : runs the GNU Debugger
Simple editing (2)
M-PgUp (scroll-other-window-down) : scrolls up the next window M-PgDn (scroll-other-window) : scrolls down the next window C-x C-SPC (pop-global-mark) : pops the top mark from the stack, and moves the cursor there C-x C-x (exchange-point-and-mark) : exchanges the mark with cursor position C-x r SPC (point-to-register) : stores the buffer & cursor position to a register C-x r j (jump-to-register) : jumps to a previously stored buffer/position. M-D (kill-word) : cuts from point until the next whitespace character M-DEL (backward-kill-word) : cuts from the last whitespace character until point C-k (kill-line) : cuts the line from point C-x r k (kill-rectangle) : cuts the rectangle defined by the mark as upper left and point as lower right corner to the clipboard C-x r y (yank-rectangle) : pastes a rectangle M-c (capitalize-word) : capitalizes the word under cursor M-l (downcase-word) : changes the word to lowercase M-u (upcase-word) : changes the word to uppercase M-/ (dabbrev-expand) : tries to complete the word you're writing with a word occuring in one of the buffers; it tries another completion when repeated (iso-accents-mode) : turns on/off flying accents (',~,^)
Search and replace (2)
C-x n n (narrow-to-region) : temporarily crops the buffer to the selected region C-x n w (widen) : restores the un-cropped buffer C-M-% (query-replace-regexp) : replaces a regexp wherever it occurs with a string, and asks for permission everytime (replace-regexp) : replaces a regexp wherever it occurs with a string (occur) : lists all occurences of search string (find-name-dired) : searches for a file with the specified name (find-grep-dired) : searches for a file that contains the specified string
Fun things to do
(gomoku) : emacs plays gomoku with you (blackbox) : a nice logical game (dunnet) : a hilarious interactive fiction (malyon) : a z-code player; you can download tons of IF games and this library at http://www.ifarchive.org/ (calendar) : a calendar that tells you everything you want to know about any day and also provides a diary - press ? for commands
Did you know?
- You can complete minibuffer commands with TAB. If you press it twice, completions appear in the next window.
- You can hide most of the 'information' buffers (like info, man, completions, help etc.) with q.
- If you press enter on a directory when typing an address in the minibuffer, a friendly navigator appears.