I am trying to configure Emacs to not only use CUA, but also for control-f to search exactly like control-s does in the standard configuration.

What I have achieved is that I can key in control-f and search for something and find it. However, when I press control-f twice, I do not find the next occurrence of the search string. (Like what happens when I in the original configuration press control-s twice.

Also, with control-s control-w I could mark a word and then search for it. This does not work either with control-f.

My configuration:

(global-set-key [(control f)] 'isearch-forward)

I am on Windows, if that matters. But ideally I would like to apply this to Mac and Linux too so I get the same keybindings on all my computers.

  • What C-s does in the standard configuration is not search-forward but isearch-forward.
    – Omar
    Jul 12, 2018 at 18:14
  • @Omar, thanks - I accidentally wrote search-forward here, I meant isearch-forward. I manually typed the question instead of copying verbatim from the config file. Jul 12, 2018 at 19:06

1 Answer 1


Apparently, we need not only (global-set-key [(control f)] 'isearch-forward) but also:

; isearch requires some customization to work with none default keys,
; since it uses its own keymap during a search.  These changes are *always*
; active, and not toggled with touchstream mode!  Luckly for us, the keys are
; we need are not used by isearch so there are no conflicts.
(define-key isearch-mode-map [(control f)] 'isearch-repeat-forward)

Source: http://fingerfans.dreamhosters.com/archive/attachments/5023_cnewcombe_emacs_like_windows.txt

  • 1
    I presume the two [(control f)] bindings are the only ones you need for your question as stated?
    – phils
    Jul 13, 2018 at 9:06
  • @phils, yes. I removed the others from my block quote. Jul 13, 2018 at 10:18

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