certainly something I misunderstand, but I cannot find an answer.

When I search in an org-mode file (with C-s) and find a result in a headline, if I press TAB to expand the headline where I found text, it expands but I get below a line with just "..." . This line is impossible to expand with TAB, and a part of the file is hidden... Where am I wrong ?

Below is an example file, I do


And I get this :

*** text 1.2...
**** text to be found

blu blu
...         <---------- impossible to expand with TAB, and rest of the file is hidden

Full example file :

* test

** title 1

*** text 1.1

bla bla

*** text 1.2

**** text to be found

blu blu

*** text 1.3

bli bli

** title 2

*** text 2.1

blo blo



I have managed to reproduce this behaviour only when the entire buffer was folded

For a more useful behaviour I'd recommend Two helpers:

  • 1) Type RET and not a TAB in a search.


  • 2) use Shift-TAB (shift and tab) to fold and unfold
  • Thanks for your help. Yes, I forgot to mention it : I almost always start with the buffer entirely folded. Shift-TAB does cycle between "buffer entirely folded" and "buffer entirely expanded", so it's not very convenient for my problem...
    – dust
    Aug 22 '19 at 17:51
  • Since all headings are hidden your search reveals only that heading and its children. In case of a heading that is the deepest in the hierarchy ( no children ) you get the ellipsis symbol . You can toggle the parent's visibility ('C-c C-u' followed by a tab), or toggle the entire buffer. If you wish to see the rest of the file, why not toggle/show it before the search? Aug 23 '19 at 10:59
  • I didn't knew C-c C-u, that is interesting. I am annoyed by this display, but this is maybe because of my usage of org mode : I have a unique HUGE file, I should maybe think about that. Anyway thanks a lot for your help !
    – dust
    Aug 23 '19 at 15:22
  • you should look at 'narrowing' as well as 'sparse-tree' functionality Aug 23 '19 at 16:11

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