So i've put this in my emacs.org:

(setq org-agenda-files (list

But whenever i close and reopen Emacs, my org-agenda is empty until i reload my config-File. Is there anything that i've missed? Also i've tried some "eval-after-load 'org" combinations but none of them have worked for me so far. Some help or guidance in the right direction would be appreciated.

  • 1
    You should put that into your .emacs or .emacs.d/init.el.
    – choroba
    Mar 17, 2018 at 8:55
  • Alright, i will try that out as soon as i get back to my Computer! Can you explain why this is actually relevant?
    – Tim Hilt
    Mar 17, 2018 at 13:36
  • Unless configured to do so, emacs doesn't inspect emacs.org, but it inspects the files I mentioned.
    – choroba
    Mar 17, 2018 at 13:50
  • Well, i actually have the init.el-file parse emacs.org. However the problem was on my side of the table: init.el is only parsed once per session; namely on startup, whereas emacs.org is set up to be manually reloaded. In my init.el file, under the custom-set-variables there was a line saying (setq 'org-agenda-files nil) which disabled all org-agenda-files on startup! No idea where this was coming from, but that explains why manually reloading emacs.org did the trick. Removed the nil-line from init.el, now everything is working fine.
    – Tim Hilt
    Mar 19, 2018 at 10:27

3 Answers 3


@Tim Hilt, thank you! Your own answer was the answer to my problem as well, so I'm making a real answer out of it for others. Apparently you and I both must have set the Org Agenda Files entry in the Custom (M-x customize) menu.

The solution is to erase this entry in the Custom menu so that your intended value in your startup file is not erased.

There are two ways to do this:

A) From @Stefan, to get to the Custom GUI menu in question quickly:

M-x customize-variable RET org-agenda-files RET

then click on the button State and choose Erase Customization.


Before @Stefan cued me to (A), the easiest way I found was to find the custom set values which looks like this in my .emacs file (it might be elsewhere for you):

 ;; custom-set-variables was added by Custom.

then below that find the line

'(org-agenda-files nil)

And delete that sucker! Restart emacs and you should be golden!

  • 1
    M-x customize-variable RET org-agenda-files RET should do the trick without having to edit the auto-generated code.
    – Stefan
    Jun 18, 2019 at 12:49
  • Great tip @Stefan thanks! I'll edit.
    – Reed Spool
    Jun 18, 2019 at 23:12

I have this in my init.el

(defun my-find-org-agenda-files ()
"Find all agenda files."
(require 'org)
(dolist (f org-agenda-files)
  (find-file-noselect f)))

In my case call it manually when I want to, but you could call it as part of your init.el. of you want to call it automatically, add:



Note that this loads the files into buffers without switching to any of the buffers.

  • When you open the agenda (C-c a a if you use the suggested key bindings ), then org opens all the agenda files in any case, so I'm not sure why you have to open them manually.
    – NickD
    Jun 19, 2019 at 20:49
  • That is fine of you want to see the agenda, which I rarely do. Partly because it can be slow to bring up (I have a number of files with a lot of data). My goal is usually just to start taking more notes and the agenda view doesn't help me with that.
    – Gina White
    Jun 19, 2019 at 20:53
  • Well, we can argue whether that is a proper use of org-agenda-files then (but not here: conversations in comments are discouraged), but please note that your "answer" does not answer the OP's question.
    – NickD
    Jun 19, 2019 at 21:03

As you are using org mode for your init/emacs configuration, You can add this entry to the emacs.org , just replace with the actual location of your org file, which should be in the emacs.d (depending on system)

** Load emacs initialization file: 
    #+BEGIN_SRC key emacs-lisp
    (global-set-key (kbd "C-c i")
    (lambda() (interactive)(org-babel-load-file "~/emacs.d/emacs.org")))

It is a babel code block that adds the binding C-c i for loading the emacs.org file.

  • Well, thanks for your answer but the expected behavior for me would be to let emacs load my agenda-files on startup! So i'm going with @choroba 's answer, which works great for me.
    – Tim Hilt
    Mar 19, 2018 at 10:19

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