I have a shell buffer that's a good candidate for a side window: I also regularly use an org buffer, that's always good to have around.


I can't figure the keyboard shortcuts to:

  • make a side window
  • remove the side window
  • focus in to the side window
  • 1
    Your question appears to be: what keys can you use to (1) show/create a side window, (2) hide/delete a side window, and (3) select a side window.
    – Drew
    Commented Jun 19, 2018 at 18:40
  • that's right mr d Commented Jun 19, 2018 at 19:17
  • Make a side window: (split-window (selected-window) nil 'right nil). Remove the side window: (delete-window (window-in-direction 'right)). Focus in to the side window: (select-window (window-in-direction 'right)). See my previous answer regarding how to display a *shell* buffer in the desired window: emacs.stackexchange.com/a/28924/2287 . You may wish to set up your own keyboard shortcuts for commonly used functions. For example, I like F11 to delete-window with no argument, and F12 to delete-other-windows with no argument.
    – lawlist
    Commented Jun 20, 2018 at 14:21
  • @lawlist the elisp you mentioned creates regular splits. This question refers to the "original" side windows. In the emacs documentation it says "Note also that delete-other-windows cannot make a side window the only window on its frame ". Since your side window can be made the sole window, it looks to me like "(split-window (selected-window) nil 'right nil)" doesn't make a real side window Commented Jul 9, 2018 at 17:21

1 Answer 1


There are no "built in" shortcuts for this. This answer uses lisp (which can be executed with Meta-:) to create a side window. Focussing on the side window and pressing C-x 1 - emacs refuses to make the side window the sole window. So I guess thats what we want.

Right now I'm doing

(display-buffer-in-side-window (get-buffer "*shell*") '((side . bottom)))

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