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Re: Calling (package-initialize) sooner during initialization

From: Mark Oteiza
Subject: Re: Calling (package-initialize) sooner during initialization
Date: Sun, 12 Apr 2015 16:05:41 -0400
User-agent: Gnus/5.13 (Gnus v5.13) Emacs/25.0.50 (gnu/linux)

Artur Malabarba <address@hidden> writes:

>> > I'm just glad this issue is up for the slaughter, I don't care whether
>> > we kill it with a magnum or a tennis racket.
>> Better documenting the relationship between custom.el and package.el
>> should have been considered over resorting to indiscriminately
>> clobbering init.el.
> This is not an issue with custom.el. The custom.el problem is one of
> the consequences. Another consequence is that users can't paste
> configurations into their init file in the way that 90% of the
> (emacs-related) internet is telling them to.
> By adding the chosen snippet to the user's init file we are preventing
> this sort of problem for new users, instead of telling them it's their
> fault for not understanding package.el.

Perhaps if the related documentation didn't suck, then 90% of the advice
on the (emacs-related) internet wouldn't be incorrect.

>> (info "(emacs) Package Installation") talks about
>> use of (package-initialize) in a user's init file.  This could be
>> improved.  Alternatively, why bother having the documentation if
>> Emacs is going to be in the habit of forcing this behaviour?
> Nobody is being forced. The added snippet clearly explains that you
> can comment it out. The only thing that's being forced upon you is the
> presence of 21 characters in your init file.

"Nobody is being forced."

"The only thing that's being forced […]"


>> I have never needed package-initialize in my init.el for things
>> installed by package.el, either from an archive or locally.  Why am I
>> subjected to having my init.el overwritten when I install anything with
>> package.el?
> You will have one sexp added to your init-file exactly once. You are
> being “subjected” to that because a lot of other people were being
> subjected things much worse (see the original thread).
> You only need to have “;(package-initialize)” somewhere in your init
> file and this feature will never ever affect your again (it will never
> even visit your init file again).

Yes, it seems the internet is giving bad advice and Emacs will now
require a specific string in a file to solve issues stemming from

I suppose it's a fine solution in that it's easy to patch out of Emacs.

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