I use org-id to automatically create ID.

For instance in an org mode file: File_A.org

* File_A section

I type C-c l that create an id

* File_A section
  :ID:       21588817-03d2-4000-8d37-43649499eff6

Then I want to include File_A section in another file, File_B.org,

(in File_B.org)

#+INCLUDE: ".file_A.org::#21588817-03d2-4000-8d37-43649499eff6"

However, this does not work (C-c ' does not follow the link).

To make it works I have to manually add a redundant "CUSTOM_ID" property.

* File_A section
  :ID:       21588817-03d2-4000-8d37-43649499eff6
  :CUSTOM_ID: 21588817-03d2-4000-8d37-43649499eff6

I am confused by the role of :ID: and :CUSTOM_ID:...

Why on one side Org-Mode's #+INCLUDE:s follow :CUSTOM_ID: (official doc) and on the other side, org-id's links (C-c l and C-c C-l) use :ID: (official org-mode/org-id.el file)?

Ideally I do not want to have a redundant and manually added:CUSTOM_ID: every time I use #+INCLUDE:. My question: is there a clean way to #+INCLUDE: a section using :ID: and not :CUSTOM_ID:?

  • 1
    Sounds like a bug to me (probably on the include side). – NickD Nov 23 at 20:34

Forget about ID, used to generate unique identifiers (likely to be used by downstream libraries, not users), and use CUSTOM_ID.

To insert it, forget about C-c l and use C-c C-x p to set a property. You can then select CUSTOM_ID. You can also include a heading directly by it's name:

#+INCLUDE: file.org::*File_A section

When giving your headings CUSTOM_IDs, prefer names that make sense for you, so that you can make sense of the heading in the includer file.

  • Thanks for your answer. I understand your point, however I like :ID: because I think that they are more robust (org-id keeps a ID database). For instance if I rename File_A.org to something_else.org my links will always work (Emacs scan the agenda files). This is not the case if my links explicitly use the file name (CUSTOM_ID case). – Picaud Vincent Nov 27 at 8:36

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