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Re: OT: version control of .el files in NT Emacs

From: Óscar Fuentes
Subject: Re: OT: version control of .el files in NT Emacs
Date: Sat, 10 Sep 2016 14:52:37 +0200
User-agent: Gnus/5.13 (Gnus v5.13) Emacs/25.1.50 (gnu/linux)

Sivaram Neelakantan <> writes:

>> You probably noticed that you need to adjust the load-path. A robust way
>> of doing that is to put in your_el_repo/emacs.el :
>> (add-to-list 'load-path (file-name-directory load-file-name))
>> It is also is useful to put this
>> (setq user-init-file load-file-name)
>> at the beginning of your emacs.el file in your_el_repo. Look up the
>> docstring for the user-init-file variable to see why.
> How does this help?  Because I have just 2 lines in the $HOME/.emacs

If you always use absolute paths and don't plan to change them, not
much, other than noise. The lines I suggested makes possible to move
your files to another directory requiring only a change to $HOME/.emacs.

And by not setting user-init-file some features will try to
inspect/modify $HOME/.emacs instead of your_el_repo/emacs.el.

> (setq user-emacs-directory "c:/gnu/initfiles/.emacs.d/" )
> (load-file "c:/gnu/initfiles/.emacs")
> And in the c:/gnu/initfiles/.emacs file I hard coded paths like
> (load-file "c:/gnu/initfiles/.text_config.el")

Prepending those files with a dot is not a good idea. The dot means that
the files are hidden on most GNU/Linux file browsers and might confuse
some tools on windows, that expect file names to obey the name.extension

Besides, load-file is an interactive function that calls `load'. With
my suggested adjustment to load-path you can simply use

(load "text_config.el")

or simply

(load "text_config")

which will also work if you ever decide to byte-compile your config files.

> I get it that .sh_history, .smex_history and other .history*
> files used/created by various packages will be still created in
> $HOME/.emacs but those are fairly transient stuff aren't they?

Yes, I don't care about those either.

One thing I do is to use a separate file for customizations:

(setq custom-file
  (concat (file-name-directory load-file-name) "customizations.el"))
(load custom-file 't)

If you use custom themes you probably want to set custom-theme-directory

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