Give a command name (for the duration of the Emacs session) to the most
recently defined keyboard macro (
Bind the most recently defined keyboard macro to a key sequence (for
the duration of the session) (
Insert in the buffer a keyboard macro’s definition, as Lisp code.
If you wish to save a keyboard macro for later use, you can give it
a name using C-x C-k n (
This reads a name as an argument using the minibuffer and defines that
name to execute the last keyboard macro, in its current form. (If you
later add to the definition of this macro, that does not alter the
name’s definition as a macro.) The macro name is a Lisp symbol, and
defining it in this way makes it a valid command name for calling with
M-x or for binding a key to with
(see Keymaps). If you specify a name that has a prior definition
other than a keyboard macro, an error message is shown and nothing is
You can also bind the last keyboard macro (in its current form) to a
key, using C-x C-k b (
kmacro-bind-to-key) followed by the
key sequence you want to bind. You can bind to any key sequence in
the global keymap, but since most key sequences already have other
bindings, you should select the key sequence carefully. If you try to
bind to a key sequence with an existing binding (in any keymap), this
command asks you for confirmation before replacing the existing binding.
To avoid problems caused by overriding existing bindings, the key sequences C-x C-k 0 through C-x C-k 9 and C-x C-k A through C-x C-k Z are reserved for your own keyboard macro bindings. In fact, to bind to one of these key sequences, you only need to type the digit or letter rather than the whole key sequences. For example,
C-x C-k b 4
will bind the last keyboard macro to the key sequence C-x C-k 4.
Once a macro has a command name, you can save its definition in a file. Then it can be used in another editing session. First, visit the file you want to save the definition in. Then use this command:
M-x insert-kbd-macro RET macroname RET
This inserts some Lisp code that, when executed later, will define the
same macro with the same definition it has now. (You don’t need to
understand Lisp code to do this, because
the Lisp code for you.) Then save the file. You can load the file
load-file (see Libraries of Lisp Code for Emacs). If the file you
save in is your init file ~/.emacs (see The Emacs Initialization File) then the
macro will be defined each time you run Emacs.
If you give
insert-kbd-macro a prefix argument, it makes
additional Lisp code to record the keys (if any) that you have bound
to macroname, so that the macro will be reassigned the same keys
when you load the file.