Emacs: Real Automatic Save File

By Xah Lee. Date: . Last updated: .

Real Auto Save File

This is the best solution i use since about 2017. Most simple code, reliable, and practical.

Save all files when you switch out of emacs.

Put this in your Emacs Init File:

(defun xah-save-all-unsaved ()
  "Save all unsaved files. no ask.
Version 2019-11-05"
  (interactive)
  (save-some-buffers t ))

(if (version< emacs-version "27")
    (add-hook 'focus-out-hook 'xah-save-all-unsaved)
  (setq after-focus-change-function 'xah-save-all-unsaved))

alternative solution and problem

You can set emacs to auto save files directly, instead of creating those #filename#.

Put this in your Emacs Init File:

(setq auto-save-default t)
(setq auto-save-visited-file-name t)

Problems

However, this does not work well. Emacs still generates those #files#, this time, named like this:

.#xxtemp.201601134145.44920.el -> xah@xah-p6813w.21261:1452244010

If you have scripts going thru your machine, you get this error:

error: cannot open /home/john/web/.#vocabulary.html No such file or directory

(info "(elisp) Auto-Saving")

There are probably ways to fix this, with hooks or timer, but i haven't looked into.

thanks to Fuqiao Xue (xfq) [[2013-08-20 https://github.com/xfq/ ]] and finalpatch [[2013-08-20 http://www.weibo.com/u/1885517634 ]]

thanks to http://irreal.org/blog/?p=4867, Anna Pawlicka (@AnnaPawlicka)

Emacs: auto save, backup

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