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I'm looking for a good way to edit text within Emacs. Can someone give some good recommendations for text-editors for Emacs.

closed as off-topic by Gilles Mar 24 at 22:45

  • This question does not appear to be about emacs, within the scope defined in the help center.
If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

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    Thumbs up! gnu emacs – manandearth Mar 24 at 21:19
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    I'm closing this question because it's a week early. – Gilles Mar 24 at 22:45
  • @Gilles I’m confused. How could this be off-topic? One of the examples of an on-topic question, given in emacs.stackexchange.com/help/on-topic , is “How to make Emacs behave like X?” This question is essentially “how do I make Emacs behave like a text editor.” I mean, this person probably doesn’t know much about Emacs, but that’s what Q&A sites are for. – Tina Russell Mar 26 at 4:11
  • @TinaRussell Questions closed with a custom comment are always marked as “off-topic”. This post is about Emacs, but it isn't really a question: there's nothing to answer there. “Can someone recommend” is not a suitable question for Stack Exchange and “how do I make Emacs behave like a text editor?” is not a useful question because it doesn't have useful answers. I mean, if you take this seriously, the answer is “nothing”. That's not useful. – Gilles Mar 26 at 23:17
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How about Emacs....

More seriously, Take the tour

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Great question. Perhaps some of these standard facilities will prove agreeable to you:

  • edt.el --- enhanced EDT keypad mode emulation for GNU Emacs

    edt-emulation-on starts emulating DEC's EDT editor. Do edt-emulation-off to return Emacs to normal.

  • tpu-edt.el --- Emacs emulating TPU emulating EDT

  • vi-mode or vip-mode or viper-mode starts emulating vi.

    • vi.el --- major mode for emulating "vi" editor under GNU Emacs
    • vip.el --- a VI Package for GNU Emacs
    • viper.el --- A full-featured Vi emulator for Emacs and XEmacs
  • crisp.el --- CRiSP/Brief Emacs emulator

    crisp-mode enables an emulation for the CRiSP editor.

  • ws-mode.el --- WordStar emulation mode for GNU Emacs

No longer available by default:

  • set-gosmacs-bindings emulates Gosling Emacs.

    This command changes many global bindings to resemble those of Gosling Emacs. The previous bindings are saved and can be restored using set-gnu-bindings.

  • You neglected to mention the most famous editor emulation package of all... evil-mode for Vim keybindings! – Sam Mar 28 at 2:39
  • There are likely to be other third-party emulators as well. This answer only covers built-in options, though. – phils Mar 28 at 3:15
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Emacs is a text editor, underneath all those layers of extra functionality 😆 Just use Ctrl+X then Ctrl+F to open a file (or create a new one), or use “Find New File…” or “Open File…” from the “File” menu up top. To save, use Ctrl+X Ctrl+S. For more, I highly recommend Xah Lee’s Emacs tutorials—they have all the tips you need to get you started. Have fun!

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Emacs is a text editor and it is fairly customizable. Perhaps the most used customization is cua-mode, so you get the C-c as copy, C-v as paste, C-x as cut, key actions widely shared among other editors. (Also, very ergonomic!)

Put this in your ~/.emacs file:

    (cua-mode t)
    (setq cua-auto-tabify-rectangles nil) ;; Don't tabify after rectangle commands
    (transient-mark-mode 1) ;; No region when it is not highlighted
    (setq cua-keep-region-after-copy t) ;; Standard Windows behaviour

and restart emacs. You question is so general, I'm guessing that is 90% of what you want, although I could be wrong.

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