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Installing Emacs on Windows

January 14, 2010

I tend to do everything I possibly can on Linux, but once in a while, I need to figure it out on Windows (*cringe). For example, today I am going to install Emacs on Windows. I quite literally have no clue how to do this, but a quick Google search turned up this page, which describes it in painful detail.

3 Comments leave one →
  1. January 14, 2010 9:57 pm

    Ugh. That’s unnecessarily painful. Just extract a Windows emacs installation anywhere, create a shortcut from bin/runemac.exe (or just run that directly), and place your existing .emacs files in your %appdata% directory (you can type “%appdata%” directly into the run box to open the folder). The only — I repeat only — edit you have to do is change / to \ in your .emacs file.

    I run emacs on both Windows and Linux (primarily Windows, actually), and my installs are identical except for the slashes in my .emacs folder.

  2. michellejw permalink*
    January 15, 2010 7:41 am

    haha – yeah, I wasn’t kidding when I said it was in painful detail… Thanks Philip, your way sounds much better. Good to know that all I have to do to my .emacs file is change the slashes.

  3. January 17, 2010 9:01 pm

    Yeah — I suppose I should insert the caveat that this assumes all your directories are relative to the “~” directory for emacs (and thus stuck in Window’s %APPDATA% folder), but there’s not really a reason to assume you *didn’t* do so. But yeah, all you’d really need to do is change


    Also, I’m not sure Windows will let you edit your .emacs file with built-in programs; it thinks you didn’t name the file. But that’s what emacs is for 😉

    A bigger problem, IMO, is the lack of some built-in things like LaTeX and aspell in Windows. MikTeX does the job nicely (and adds itself to path to C-c C-f works just fine), but the ispell/aspell in Windows are terribly outdated. I tried for a few days to compile it, but I kept hitting dependency problems. I ultimately got a compiled version, but could never get it to read the dictionaries. Since I’m not too familiar with C, all I was able to figure out was that the problem lay in the header file and where it looks for stuff; but I could never get it to point to somewhere that worked.

    Oh well.

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