I recently reinstalled emacs after some technical difficulties. I managed to keep some of my personal configuration files, which I believe may have caused an issue. As I went to install packages, I discovered that each non-installed package had a duplicate. I figure this is due to remnant from when I transferred my data over, but I am unsure as to exactly what.

1 Answer 1


each non-installed package had a duplicate

It's because you have multiple package repositories added to the package-archives list. It is OK for a package to be present in multiple repositories, say GNU Elpa and Melpa.

The Archive column in the Package Menu buffer indicates the archive name like gnu (GNU Elpa), melpa (Melpa), marmalade (Marmalade). You, the user, can choose which version of the package to install.

Are you sure each non-installed package has a duplicate? Or is it many of them?

On another note, if you are re-installing emacs and you already have an emacs config, it might be a good idea to remove the ~/.emacs.d/elpa directory (IF you maintain a list of all the packages you installed).

This step will get rid of all the duplicate package rows that appear with the obsolete tag (if any) that showed up in the Archive column in Package Menu buffer (M-x list-packages).

See also:

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    I am aware of the different repositories. These duplicates are exactly the same (same version, same repository etc.). I did remove the /elpa directory to update everything though
    – zalba19
    Commented Nov 6, 2015 at 3:43
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    @zalba19 I have never seen that. So hopefully someone else can throw light on this issue. btw it is not clear if you still saw this issue after deleting elpa/ dir.. IMO deleting elpa/ and re-installing all packages should resolve the problem. Commented Nov 6, 2015 at 3:47
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    Wild guess.. When you do C-h v package-archives, do you see the same repository repeated twice by any chance. Commented Nov 6, 2015 at 4:34
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    Why yes it did. Thank you. I imagine deleting the second one, deleting elpa/ and rerunning emacs should fix this issue. Thank you
    – zalba19
    Commented Nov 6, 2015 at 4:40
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    Nope, just fixing your config to make sure that you don't have duplicate entries in package-archives and restarting emacs should fix it. Commented Nov 6, 2015 at 4:43

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