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Compilation warnings of ELisp seem wrong and misleading


From: Ludwig, Mark
Subject: Compilation warnings of ELisp seem wrong and misleading
Date: Mon, 30 Mar 2015 13:47:41 +0000

Greetings,

I've been using an ancient Emacs (19.29) on Solaris and finally
got around to installing a current one (24.4).

I don't normally compile my ".emacs" code, but stumbled
across a change in the compile code (compile-internal is no
longer present), and that prompted me to explicitly
byte-compile my custom Elisp code to see what other problems
that would expose, so I could take care of all of them at
the same time.

I find my custom Elisp generates warnings that seem pretty stupid.
For example:

emacs.el:255:10:Warning: reference to free variable `if'
emacs.el:219:8:Warning: reference to free variable `save-excursion'
emacs.el:331:41:Warning: reference to free variable `forward-char'
emacs.el:261:17:Warning: reference to free variable `insert'
emacs.el:261:17:Warning: reference to free variable `forward-sexp'

Those are all valid functions.  For example, here are lines 255-258:

        (if (not (= ans ?q))
            (progn
              (goto-char found-start)
              (delete-region found-start found-end)))

This is inside a large-ish "let*" form (111 lines).

Most of this code is duplicated on Windows, where I'm using
Emacs 24.2 (just to give some context that my Elisp
knowledge isn't all completely ancient).

I can't see how these warnings can be correct, but there are
so many that they obscure the "meaningful" ones.  Are these
sorts of warnings known flaws in the byte compiler, do I
need to compile differently, am I doing something stupid, or
what?

BTW, I /very/ /much/ /like/ this warning:

emacs.el:1326:76:Warning: Use `with-current-buffer' rather than
    save-excursion+set-buffer

Thanks for that!

Cheers,

Mark Ludwig
Lifecycle Coll
Product Lifecycle Management

Siemens Industry Sector
Siemens Product Lifecycle Management Software Inc.
5939 Rice Creek Parkway
Shoreview, MN  55126 United States 
Tel.      :+1 (651) 855-6140
Fax      :+1 (651) 855-6280
address@hidden 
www.siemens.com/plm 





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