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Re: using libmagic in Emacs?

From: Stefan Monnier
Subject: Re: using libmagic in Emacs?
Date: Tue, 18 Aug 2009 15:23:06 -0400
User-agent: Gnus/5.13 (Gnus v5.13) Emacs/23.1.50 (gnu/linux)

> (This is probably a FAQ but my google skills seem to fail me)
> There are some operations in Emacs which tries to do the same thing as
> the "libmagic" library, which is the core of the "file" utility, does.

> For instance, in "image.el" there is functionality to look at magic
> numbers in image files.

> Also, I often whish that files would open in Emacs with correct mode
> more often when there is no file extension.

> Would there be interest in an Emacs patch for libmagic, or is there some
> obvious reason this havent been done yet? I envision this as being an
> inteface with 2 implementations, a lisp fallback like today, and
> libmagic if available. I did a libmagick wrapper for Ocaml using Swig
> before so I have some familiarity with the API.

I think it's a good idea.  It may require some non-trivial changes on
the Lisp side, since libmagic's information is not quite the same as
what Emacs currently uses: we'll probably want to use libmagic to get
a MIME-type and then have a table mapping mime-types to major modes or
some such.


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