I want to define a action that says open <config file> within the actual config file itself. However, this config file may be in a different location on different computers. How can I get the current file's filename with a macro?

In this example, I'm looking avoid typing "etude-module-lisp" or the filename of the file in this particular piece of code:

(on/mode: [::lisp   lisp-interaction-mode]
  ::eval-cursor    'eval-last-sexp
  ::eval-buffer    'eval-buffer)
  • 2
    It's not clear (to me) what you're asking. Are you looking for a keyboard macro or a Lisp macro (why)? What is that "action" (doesn't look like Lisp). How would you define it normally, e.g. without Emacs? And what do you mean by the current file - do you mean the file visited by the current-buffer? (If so, use function buffer-file-name.)
    – Drew
    Commented Sep 24, 2018 at 3:59
  • Apparently this is about determining a namespace/module equivalent at compilation time. This kind of thing can be done easily in Clojure, in Emacs Lisp, not so much.
    – wasamasa
    Commented Sep 27, 2018 at 7:36
  • I think you're looking for load-file-name, but I'm not sure how that macro is supposed to work.
    – npostavs
    Commented Sep 27, 2018 at 12:40
  • @npostavs. this works. it's not a macro. it's a variable that's set automatically when the file is compiled. I'll accept your answer if you write it up.
    – zcaudate
    Commented Sep 27, 2018 at 13:21

1 Answer 1


You can use the variable load-file-name for this. Note that it's only bound while your file is loading. So this doesn't work (because you finished loading foo.el or foo.elc before foo-function is called):

(defun foo-function ()
  (message "loaded from %s" load-file-name))

You should save the value when the file is being loaded, e.g.:

(defconst foo-file (or load-file-name buffer-file-name))

(defun foo-function ()
  (message "loaded from %s" foo-file))

Falling back to buffer-file-name lets it work with eval-buffer as well as load.

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