I have long paths and filenames showing in my helm session and I want to quickly look at one and then go back to the normal view. You can see my long paths and filenames below:

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There are several related things that helm will do. One of them is C-] Toggle Details, which gives toggles the view (starting with the above) shown below:

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This only shows the full filenames though, and I also want to view the paths.

Another option in GUI emacs is to mouseover a result, but the path is so long that the hover text goes off the screen ('fml', nothing worse than thinking you've been saved by contextual hover menu/text, which then jumps off the screen anyway :D)

Finally, you can both widen columns and toggle truncated lines.

That last one is important, because what I want to do, ideally, is toggle truncation for a selection of lines (or just the current line) with a key command.

2 Answers 2


(helm-toggle-truncate-line) is bound to C-c >. I found this out by searching for toggle in the helm help page, accessed during a helm session with C-h m.


Although slightly off topic, you may want to customize the helm-xref-candidate-formatting-function which provides the following choices:

  • helm-xref-format-candidate-short. The default: only shows file base name.
  • helm-xref-format-candidate-full-path. Shows the full path of the file.
  • helm-xref-format-candidate-long. Uses 2 lines per candidates: the file name with complete path in the first line, the second line is the string found in the file.

I find using helm-xref-format-candidate-long helps the most.

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