1

When I run M-x ibuffer, a table of my buffers is displayed. The first column header is MR, and I assume the R stands for read only, however, I don't know what the M stands for. What does it stand for?

2

I would assume it stands for Modified. A buffer with unsaved changes will have an asterisk in this column.

1
  • Oops, I was typing my answer on my phone and didn't get a notification that you had already posted yours. Sorry about that :) @bmillare If you're going to accept an answer, it should be this one.
    – itsjeyd
    Feb 3 '15 at 15:28
2

M stands for "modified". Emacs will display a star in this column for every buffer that is visiting a modified file.

4
  • How can a buffer be both modified and read only? Aren't they mutually exclusive?
    – bmillare
    Feb 3 '15 at 16:04
  • 2
    @bmillare Emacs lets you toggle read-only status of a file via C-x C-q, so if you modify a file and then make it read-only without saving it first, ibuffer will put a marker in both columns.
    – itsjeyd
    Feb 3 '15 at 16:18
  • What's the reasoning with auto generated buffers like *Buffer List*, *Messages*, *cider-doc*, where I wouldn't have toggled the read-only state myself?
    – bmillare
    Feb 4 '15 at 16:28
  • @bmillare Auto-generated buffers are read-only because Emacs uses them to present information to you. The assumption is that you don't want to edit these buffers in most cases, so Emacs prevents you from modifying them accidentally by making them read-only. I'm not an expert on this topic, but I guess these buffers are additionally marked as "modified" because they contain text that hasn't been saved to a file.
    – itsjeyd
    Feb 4 '15 at 18:40

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