The E2 Emacs Reference Guide

Some conventions

C-       - press and hold the Ctrl key
M-       - press and hold the Meta key (usually Alt/Esc on PC keyboards, and diamond on *nix ones)

Starting and leaving emacs

emacs     - Starts emacs

C-z       - Suspends the current session

C-w C-c   - Exits emacs

Navigating around the editor window

Cursor motion:
entity to move over                  backward      forward

character                              C-b           C-f

word                                   M-b           M-f

line                                   C-p           C-n

beginning or end of line               C-a           C-e

beginning or end of sentence           M-a           M-e

beginning or end of page               C-x [         C-x ]

Scroll motion:

C-v     - Next screen

M-v     - Previous screen 

C-x  <  - Scroll left 

C-x  >  - Scroll right

File Operations

C-x C-f - Open a file

C-x C-s - Save a file

C-x i   - Insert a file into the current buffer

C-x C-w - Save the current buffer

Killing and deleting text

entity to kill                          backward      forward
character (delete, not kill)             DEL           C-d

word                                     M-DEL         M-d

line (to end of)                         M-0 C-k       C-k

sentence                                 C-x DEL       M-k

M-z     	- Kill to next occurrence of char


TAB	- Indent current line 

C-M \	- Indent region 

C-o	- Insert newline after point

C-M-o	- Move rest of line vertically down

C-x C-o	- Delete blank lines around point

M-\	- Delete all white space around point

C-x .	- Set prefix each line starts with

M-u	- Uppercase word 

M-l	- Lowercase word 

M-c	- Capitalise word


C-h t	- Start the tutorial 

C-x 1	- Close Help window

Esc C-v	- Scroll Help windows


C-s	- Search forward 

C-r	- Search backward  

C-g  	- Cancels Search   

Error Recovery

C-g 	- Abort command

C-x	- Undo

For further information see

This was an attempt to drag together a beginners guide to emacs

Any additions/corrections /msg me

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