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In Emacs 25.3 (but not 22.3, for example), the search string " " (space) in LaTeX mode is matched by the carriage return character as well as the space character. I can understand why Emacs has been programmed this way: a single carriage return in LaTeX will give a space in the compiled document. However, I'd like to turn this behaviour off in the Emacs search, so that a search for " " returns only spaces. How can I do this?

I've tried looking for answers through Google and through a direct search on SE ("emacs latex mode search") but couldn't find an answer. Grateful for any help.

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Try hitting M-s SPC while in isearch to toggle whitespace matching before you type in the space character to search. Also, you might want to check the variable 'search-whitespace-regexp' and its documentation. In my case, it was set to the default value and so searching for " " did not find carriage return, but when set to "[ \t\r\n]+", it does – unless toggled off with M-s SPC.

I found this in the documentation of isearch itself, hit C-h m while in isearch to get there.

  • LaTeX mode changes the variable search-whitespace-regexp from the default. If I reset the variable manually after I've loaded my tex file, then the problem is solved. However, if I try to set it in my init file (which is what I want to do), then the default gets overridden when Emacs sees I'm reading a tex file. Any thoughts? – Paul Buckingham Jan 12 '18 at 16:46
  • It doesn't at my site. Have you installed/activated the AUCTeX package? Because I do, and there is no problem, but when I try it with no config / packages, I get the same issue (and AUCTeX is much superior to the built-in tex-modes anyways). – schmuu Jan 13 '18 at 15:32

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