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Re: Emacs for Mac OS X - questions

From: Tim Visher
Subject: Re: Emacs for Mac OS X - questions
Date: Thu, 25 Jun 2009 15:22:11 -0400

Hi Marc,

Before I answer any of your specific questions, I would highly
recommend that you just use MacPorts build of Emacs rather than going
with Aquamacs.  I believe Aquamacs is a little bit more tuned/modified
for OS X rather than a standard Emacs experience and given the ease of
installing Emacs using MacPorts, there's really no reason to use it

See for more info.

On Thu, Jun 25, 2009 at 2:27 PM, Marc Tfardy<address@hidden> wrote:
> I plan to switch from windows to intel mac and Aquamacs and I don't want
> use windows under mac - neither in virtual machine nor as dual boot.
> Emacs is one of my main application so it is very important for me that
> all things are working as usual. Here my questions:
>  - can I switch off menubar, toolbar and scrollbar?

You can do all of this using the standard methods from within your
.emacs file.  However, there's actually no reason to turn off the
menubar on OS X, as you save no space by doing it.  OS X has a built
in location for all menubars that remains there throughout the entire
OS.  I have seen more than a few examples of people putting a switch
around the turn-off-menu-bar code that tests for OS X and doesn't do
it if it's there.  However, if you have no need for the menu bar
anyway, it's probably not worth the trouble.

>  - is the look & feel approximately like GNU Emacs?

It's virtually the same, in my estimation, except for the window
dressing, which is basically like changing your skin.

>  - can I open file without popup dialog - simply with C-x C-f in
>    minibuffer?


>  - can I suppress all popup dialogs?

I'm not sure which popup dialogs you're referring to here.  However, I
can assure you that I've never seen a pop-up dialog while working with
Emacs on OS X.

>  - working M-w, C-w, C-y or must I use C-x, C-c, C-v?


>  - can I switch off tabs?

Again, not sure exactly what you're referring to.  I have never seen
tabs in the MacPorts built version of Emacs.

>  - working all this nice extension elisp packages from internet without
>    any kind of adaptations?

I haven't had to modify any of the elisp packages I have installed.

>  - what GNU Emacs features do not working in Aquamacs? In "Appendix
>    F - Emacs and Mac OS" is written:
>    "Emacs built on Mac OS X supports most of its major features except
>     display support of PostScript images. The following features of
>     Emacs are not supported on Mac OS Classic: unexec (`dump-emacs'),
>     asynchronous subprocesses (`start-process'), and networking
>     (`open-network-stream'). As a result, packages such as Gnus, GUD,
>     and Comint do not work. Synchronous subprocesses (`call-process')
>     are supported on non-Carbon build, but specially-crafted external
>     programs are needed. Since external programs to handle commands
>     such as `print-buffer' and `diff' are not available on Mac OS
>     Classic, they are not supported. Non-Carbon build on Mac OS Classic
>     does not support some features such as file dialogs, drag-and-drop,
>     and Unicode menus."
>     Is it still true for Aquamacs?

I haven't noticed anything.

>  - on which inconvenience and discomforts do I have to count? What is
>    different to GNU Emacs?

I haven't noticed anything, really.  I would recommend using the
System Preferences/Keyboard & Mouse/Modifier preference pane to turn
the capslock key into a control key and the option key into the super
key and then use the emacs preference dialog to change the command key
into your meta key.  However, you may not want it to be that way.
Just be aware that you can indeed move the modifier keys around to
suit your taste.

Hope that helps!


In Christ,

Timmy V. - Spend less time on e-mail

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