At some unidentifiable point of time (can be in a few days, can be in a few hours) something clicks in Emacs and it starts automatically recentering my cursor position. Like I move my cursor somewhere and in a few seconds the buffer is shifted so that cursor is now vertically in the middle of the window. Once this happens, it persists in all buffers until I restart Emacs.

I can't figure what triggers this, but I noticed that the probability of of this happening increases if I use GUI commands like customize-group, customize-variable etc.

I thought that maybe my smooth scrolling setup was to blame. I used to have this in my init.el:

(setq-default redisplay-dont-pause t
              scroll-margin 1
              scroll-step 1
              auto-window-vscroll nil
              scroll-conservatively 10000
              scroll-preserve-screen-position 1)

Now I replaced that with smooth-scrolling package and the mentioned behavior still occurs.

Can anyone help with this? I run Emacs as a daemon, and being forced to restart it because of such silly issue enrages me.

1 Answer 1


The answer is here. You probably have a buffer-list open somewhere, and version 24.3 has a bug in tabulated-list-mode which causes the periodic recentering. If you close that buffer-list, behaviour reverts back to normal.

How to stop it permanently

This bug was fixed in Emacs 24.5, so you need to install that, or something more recent. Currently, 24.5 is the official released stable versions, so it should be available to you.

You can download the official release, or do some Googling to find out if your OS has this version available from its repositories.

  • Thank you! Indeed I tried popping up a buffer list and the recentering began, and it stopped I after I closed the list. Now I hope this is the only cause of this problem. Mar 27, 2015 at 12:47

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