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Operating on Several Buffers
The "buffer-menu" facility is like a "Dired for buffers"; it allows
you to request operations on various Emacs buffers by editing an Emacs
buffer containing a list of them. You can save buffers, kill them
(here called "deleting" them, for consistency with Dired), or display
Begin editing a buffer listing all Emacs buffers.
The command `buffer-menu' writes a list of all Emacs buffers into
the buffer `*Buffer List*', and selects that buffer in Buffer Menu
mode. The buffer is read-only, and can be changed only through the
special commands described in this section. The usual Emacs cursor
motion commands can be used in the `*Buffer List*' buffer. The
following commands apply to the buffer described on the current line.
Request to delete (kill) the buffer, then move down. The request
shows as a `D' on the line, before the buffer name. Requested
deletions take place when you type the `x' command.
Like `d' but move up afterwards instead of down.
Request to save the buffer. The request shows as an `S' on the
line. Requested saves take place when you type the `x' command.
You may request both saving and deletion for the same buffer.
Perform previously requested deletions and saves.
Remove any request made for the current line, and move down.
Move to previous line and remove any request made for that line.
The `d', `s' and `u' commands to add or remove flags also move down
a line. They accept a numeric argument as a repeat count.
These commands operate immediately on the buffer listed on the
Mark the buffer "unmodified". The command `~' does this
immediately when you type it.
Toggle the buffer's read-only flag. The command `%' does this
immediately when you type it.
Visit the buffer as a tag table.
There are also commands to select another buffer or buffers:
Quit the buffer menu--immediately display the most recent formerly
visible buffer in its place.
Immediately select this line's buffer in place of the `*Buffer
Immediately select this line's buffer in another window as if by
`C-x 4 b', leaving `*Buffer List*' visible.
Immediately display this line's buffer in another window, but don't
select the window.
Immediately select this line's buffer in a full-screen window.
Immediately set up two windows, with this line's buffer in one,
and the previously selected buffer (aside from the buffer `*Buffer
List*') in the other.
Mark this line's buffer to be displayed in another window if the
`q' command is used. The request shows as a `>' at the beginning
of the line. The same buffer may not have both a delete request
and a display request.
Immediately select this line's buffer, and also display in other
windows any buffers previously marked with the `m' command. If
you have not marked any buffers, this command is equivalent to `1'.
All that `buffer-menu' does directly is create and select a suitable
buffer, and turn on Buffer Menu mode. Everything else described above
is implemented by the special commands provided in Buffer Menu mode.
One consequence of this is that you can switch from the `*Buffer List*'
buffer to another Emacs buffer, and edit there. You can reselect the
`buffer-menu' buffer later, to perform the operations already
requested, or you can kill it, or pay no further attention to it.
The only difference between `buffer-menu' and `list-buffers' is that
`buffer-menu' selects the `*Buffer List*' buffer and `list-buffers'
does not. If you run `list-buffers' (that is, type `C-x C-b') and
select the buffer list manually, you can use all of the commands
The buffer `*Buffer List*' is not updated automatically; its
contents are just text. If you have created, deleted or renamed
buffers, the way to update `*Buffer List*' to show what you have done
is to repeat the `buffer-menu' command.
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