I just installed the seti-theme from MELPA and no errors occurred. Than I ran M-x load-theme and after a few questions nothing would hapen and emacs would throw the following error:

Warning (initialization): An error occurred while loading `/home/matthias/.emacs':

error: Unable to find theme file for `seti'

To ensure normal operation, you should investigate and remove the
cause of the error in your initialization file.  Start Emacs with
the `--debug-init' option to view a complete error backtrace.

After I did the same a second time in a session the theme would appear without any errors.

I tried to add the theme to my .emacs( http://pastebin.com/Gk7gH3dT ) with: (load-theme 'seti), which doesn't work either.

emacs --debug-init

results in:

    Debugger entered--Lisp error: (error "Unable to find theme file for `seti'")
  signal(error ("Unable to find theme file for `seti'"))
  error("Unable to find theme file for `%s'" seti)
  eval-buffer(#<buffer  *load*> nil "/home/matthias/.emacs" nil t)  ; Reading at buffer position 113
  load-with-code-conversion("/home/matthias/.emacs" "/home/matthias/.emacs" t t)
  load("~/.emacs" t t)
  #[0 "\205\262   \306=\203\307\310Q\202; \311=\204\307\312Q\202;\313\307\314\315#\203*\316\202;\313\307\314\317#\203:\320\nB\321\202;\316\322\323\322\211#\210\322=\203a\324\325\326\307\327Q!\"\323\322\211#\210\322=\203`\210\203\243\330!\331\232\203\243\332!\211\333P\334!\203}\211\202\210\334!\203\207\202\210\314\262\203\241\335\"\203\237\336\337#\210\340\341!\210\266\f?\205\260\314\323\342\322\211#)\262\207" [init-file-user system-type delayed-warnings-list user-init-file inhibit-default-init inhibit-startup-screen ms-dos "~" "/_emacs" windows-nt "/.emacs" directory-files nil "^\\.emacs\\(\\.elc?\\)?$" "~/.emacs" "^_emacs\\(\\.elc?\\)?$" (initialization "`_emacs' init file is deprecated, please use `.emacs'") "~/_emacs" t load expand-file-name "init" file-name-as-directory "/.emacs.d" file-name-extension "elc" file-name-sans-extension ".el" file-exists-p file-newer-than-file-p message "Warning: %s is newer than %s" sit-for 1 "default"] 7 "\n\n(fn)"]()

The theme I had installed manually works fine.

  • Sounds like the directory that contains the library defining that theme is not in your load-path. Put it in your load-path, using add-to-list. And then require the library.
    – Drew
    Commented Oct 5, 2015 at 16:02
  • ok that fixed it. I thought installing using packages would do that automatically.
    – Stein
    Commented Oct 5, 2015 at 16:41
  • I believe that the solution of this question asked a while back here on emacs.SE might resolve the problem for you to. If so, let me know if marking this question as duplicate seems fit. Commented Oct 5, 2015 at 18:20

1 Answer 1


This worked:

(when (>= emacs-major-version 24)
  (require 'package)
   '("melpa" . "http://melpa.org/packages/")
;; set theme
(load-theme 'seti t)

In combination with the steps explained here:

Why does load-theme reset the custom-theme-load-path?

and what is written in the comments below.

  • ok. So what would be the correct line to add the theme? I can't seem to figure it out?
    – Stein
    Commented Oct 5, 2015 at 20:32
  • You need to completely erase the custom-theme-load-path variable from your customizations, delete and reinstall your theme, put (load-theme 'THEME-NAME t) in your emacs config and restart emacs. For your case, it will be (load-theme 'seti t). You must also have (package-initialize) in the very beginning of your emacs config that will take care of loading the themes installed using the package manager. Commented Oct 5, 2015 at 20:35
  • Ok, thanks. Now it worked. There is so much information online for old emacs versions. It gets confusing very fast. Thanks
    – Stein
    Commented Oct 5, 2015 at 20:54
  • 1
    C-h r (mnemonic: r stands for emacs manual reference) will take you to the Emacs info manual. It's contents in HTML form are mirrored on gnu.org/software/emacs/manual/html_node/emacs/index.html. But again, to get help specific to your emacs version, you should always rely on the info manual that comes packaged with your installed emacs (C-h r). Commented Oct 5, 2015 at 21:01

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