In the magit-status buffer, pressing TAB shows or hides a given section, which is handy when looking at unstaged content and see what hunks can be staged.

However, when tabbing on a section, the buffer goes down, so the section I am trying to expand goes to the bottom of the buffer, thus hiding the expanded part of the section. I then have to cycle using recenter-top-bottom to bring the section back to the top of the buffer.

Is there a way to automatically bring the section / entry to the top of the buffer when expanding it?

3 Answers 3


If you're using Emacs v24.3.x, put his in your .emacs

(defadvice magit-toggle-section (after magit-section-hidden activate)
  (recenter-top-bottom 0))

If you're using Emacs v24.4.x, here is what I have come up with using an advice – although I am sure it is not perfect:

(defun magit-toggle-scroll-to-top () (recenter-top-bottom 0))
(advice-add 'magit-toggle-section :after #'magit-toggle-scroll-to-top)
  • The advice-add is void in Emacs v24.3.1, it is new advice facility introduced in Emacs v24.4
    – CodyChan
    Nov 18, 2014 at 4:09
  • @CodyChan That's right: for older versions, defadvice should be used. Nov 18, 2014 at 9:31
  • Thank you. Your solution for Emacs 24.4 worked perfectly for me. I've been going mad, thinking that any of the packages which I have is conflicting with Magit. Jun 20, 2015 at 21:09

On the next branch that's already supported. (Which shouldn't keep anybody from giving another answer here, explaining how to get the same effect with master).

  • I misread you question. A similar feature exists when moving between sections, but didn't in the case you actually asked about. But now I have implemented that for toggling sections too, and so this answer is correct now :-)
    – tarsius
    Nov 11, 2014 at 21:20
  • Awesome, I'll give the next branch a spin. Nov 11, 2014 at 21:44
  • Not that be default it only does this for hunks, replace magit-hunk-set-window-start with magit-section-set-window-start in magit-section-movement-hook and magit-section-show-hook if you would like this behavior for all sections. Now that I think of it doing so for magit-section-show-hook would probably lead to problems.
    – tarsius
    Nov 11, 2014 at 22:41
  • Turns out this isn't as easy as I though and I had to revert this change for now.
    – tarsius
    Nov 12, 2014 at 0:27

These work on the latest version of magit from Melpa (from master branch) as tested today.

While in the Magit Status window,

  • C-u j u - Jump to the unstaged section, expand it and bring that to the top of the buffer
  • C-u j s - Jump to the staged section, expand it and bring that to the top of the buffer

Similar action will apply to other C-u j .. bindings in the magit-section-jump-map too.

From magit.el in master branch:

(defvar magit-section-jump-map
  (let ((map (make-sparse-keymap)))
    (define-key map (kbd "z") 'magit-jump-to-stashes)
    (define-key map (kbd "n") 'magit-jump-to-untracked)
    (define-key map (kbd "u") 'magit-jump-to-unstaged)
    (define-key map (kbd "s") 'magit-jump-to-staged)
    (define-key map (kbd "f") 'magit-jump-to-unpulled)
    (define-key map (kbd "p") 'magit-jump-to-unpushed)
    (define-key map (kbd "r") 'magit-jump-to-pending)
  "Submap for jumping to sections in `magit-status-mode'.")


To answer your specific application to review the hunks in unstaged section, do C-u j u in the Magit Status buffer.

Applies to the magit master branch code; haven't tried out the next branch.

An example workflow using these bindings

  1. M-x magit-status
  2. Stage the files you want using s
  3. Expand the staged files showing the hunk diffs, while also positioning the top of the staged section to the top of the buffer: C-u j s
  4. Commit c c, opens COMMIT buffer in a split window
  5. Write log while reviewing staged diffs in other window. If diff exceeds the window height, I use the 'scroll other window commands'.
  6. Finish commit C-c C-c.
  • Although these are indeed useful shortcuts, this is not exactly what I was after: I want the current file, or hunk, or section to scroll to the top when I expand it so I can see most of the diff in that current change. Apr 28, 2015 at 19:43

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