I am looking for a solution (a function) that evaluates all the tables in the org file/buffer. I should be then simply able to add that to the local value of before-save-hook in org-mode.

Currently, I need to remember to C-u C-c C-c on all the tables before exporting to ensure that the calculated values in all tables are current.

Or am I missing some org variable, setting which should take care of this?


I found the function you need (with a tiny bit of luck). You just have to add the following function to your before-save-hook.


Assuming you have no other hooks, this means just to set.

(add-hook 'before-save-hook 'org-table-recalculate-buffer-tables)

Feel free to adjust it to your needs.

  • 1
    There is no point in using setq instead of add-hook IMHO
    – YoungFrog
    May 12 '16 at 16:30
  • You are probably right. I don't have any hooks in my setup so I tested it with a "setq" and it worked. I only found the function required by browsing the code
    – Joafigue
    May 12 '16 at 16:32
  • I have replaced setq with add-hook.
    – xuchunyang
    Jan 31 '17 at 15:37

Thanks to the hint to the correct function by Joafigue, I solved the question by adding this to my config:

;; Recalculate all org tables in the buffer when saving.
(defvar-local modi/org-table-enable-buffer-wide-recalculation t
  "When non-nil, all the org tables in the buffer will be recalculated when
saving the file.

This variable is buffer local.")
;; Mark `modi/org-table-enable-buffer-wide-recalculation' as a safe local
;; variable as long as its value is t or nil. That way you are not prompted
;; to add that to `safe-local-variable-values' in custom.el.
(put 'modi/org-table-enable-buffer-wide-recalculation 'safe-local-variable #'booleanp)

(defun modi/org-table-recalculate-buffer-tables (&rest args)
  "Wrapper function for `org-table-recalculate-buffer-tables' that runs
that function only if `modi/org-table-enable-buffer-wide-recalculation' is

Also, this function has optional ARGS that is needed for any function that is
added to `org-export-before-processing-hook'. This would be useful if this
function is ever added to that hook."
  (when modi/org-table-enable-buffer-wide-recalculation

(defun modi/org-table-recalculate-before-save ()
  "Recalculate all org tables in the buffer before saving."
  (add-hook 'before-save-hook #'modi/org-table-recalculate-buffer-tables nil :local))
(add-hook 'org-mode-hook #'modi/org-table-recalculate-before-save)

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