I've installed emacs on a new OS, and would like to maintain my 'recentf' file history entries (they'll be in the same location thanks to symlinks).

Where are these entries stored? And how could I export + improt them to the new emacs installation?

1 Answer 1


To determine where the recentf file is, you can query the variable recentf-save-file. By default, that is ~/.emacs.d/recentf. In spacemacs that is ~/.emacs.d/.cache/recentf.

You can copy this file over to the new machine, or you can open the file and copy the entries. AFAIK there is no functionality to import/export, as that's a very exclusive use case and often doesn't make much sense across machines.

  • Sadly this no longer seems to work. Seems to get overridden by an empty file when attempting this. Commented Jun 9, 2020 at 13:42

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