I am trying to use bookmark+, but I am unable to get the highlighting as I wish (or, maybe, as I wrongly expect?): When I change the default highlight of a bookmark, I only see the purple flag, but never the colored file name (e.g. tt) I do see colors like in the second line for dired bookmarks.

Snapshot of 2 bookmarks

What I would like to achieve: Change the color/highlighting of a bookmark name according to my own scheme, in a quite easy way. I noticed that I get a lot of questions about style and face when I try to change the highlighting - but it never made any difference for me.

1 Answer 1


Put the cursor on the bookmark name and use C-u C-x =. Near the bottom of buffer *Help* you'll see the name(s) of the face(s) on the text at the cursor. Then M-x customize-face for that face.

I'm guessing the face you need to customize is bmkp-local-file-without-region. By default it doesn't look different from the default font (e.g., just black text).

M-x list-faces-display shows all current faces. Those used by Bookmark+ have names with prefix bmkp:

  • bmkp-*-mark
  • bmkp->-mark
  • bmkp-D-mark
  • bmkp-X-mark
  • bmkp-a-mark
  • bmkp-bad-bookmark
  • bmkp-bookmark-file
  • bmkp-bookmark-list
  • bmkp-buffer
  • bmkp-desktop
  • bmkp-file-handler
  • bmkp-function
  • bmkp-gnus
  • bmkp-heading
  • bmkp-info
  • bmkp-light-autonamed
  • bmkp-light-autonamed-region
  • bmkp-light-fringe-autonamed
  • bmkp-light-fringe-non-autonamed
  • bmkp-light-mark
  • bmkp-light-non-autonamed
  • bmkp-light-non-autonamed-region
  • bmkp-local-directory
  • bmkp-local-file-with-region
  • bmkp-local-file-without-region
  • bmkp-man
  • bmkp-no-jump
  • bmkp-no-local
  • bmkp-non-file
  • bmkp-remote-file
  • bmkp-sequence
  • bmkp-snippet
  • bmkp-su-or-sudo
  • bmkp-t-mark
  • bmkp-url
  • bmkp-variable-list

In buffer *Bookmark List*, if you use ? or C-h m you'll see their descriptions listed, showing their highlights. E.g., face bmkp-local-file-without-region shows this description with that face (same as face default, by default): Local file with no region.

UPDATE after your comment that says that you tried HH and H+, and that you want to change how a bookmark is lighted in buffer *Bookmark List*.

Bookmarks are highlighted in various ways (customizable) at their bookmarked locations (destinations).

Bookmark names/lines in *Bookmark List* are highlighted according to their types. If a bookmark has its own (destination) highlighting defined then, in *Bookmark List* a "purple flag" (face bmkp-light-mark), as you mentioned and show, is shown next to each one whose location will be highlighted (when you visit it).

In *Bookmark List*, HH turns on (destination) highlighting for the bookmark listed on the current line. H+ defines how the bookmark on the current line will be highlighted (at its destination).

There's no feature to highlight arbitrary bookmarks in *Bookmark List*. That would interfere with highlighting to show the bookmark types. (You could copy the definition of function bmkp-bmenu-list-1 and modify it to do that, I guess.)

  • Thanks for your quick reply. If I edit and change bmkp-local-file-without-region, every bookmark of this kind (i.e. 99 percent in my case) ends up with this color, which makes no difference then. I was hoping that HH or H+ could be used to give different colors to bookmarks, but for some reason I do not see any change when I use these shortcuts. Maybe I just misunderstand what HH etc. are doing. But assigning colors to bookmarks would be really cool.
    – scfrank
    May 22, 2023 at 9:33

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