Defindit Docs and Howto Home

This page last modified: May 18 2007
description:Getting emacs to start faster with a different font as well as setting and saving a Mule font.
title:Emacs and .Xdefaults, Mule set, Mule save

Table of contents
Mule set and save font
.Xdefaults and Emacs

Mule set and save font

Setting a font via the menu is easy (assuming that you are running the
X-windows version of Emacs). After using Emacs for nearly 15 years I
still have not been able to figure out how to use the menus in
non-windowing -nw mode.

In windowing mode to go Options, mouse over Mule (don't click), slide
over to Set Font/Fontset, and click. A menu pops up. Mouse-over your
choice (which will expand), and finally click on your font or fontset
of choice. The user interface of Emacs menus is very odd.

Now you are faced with a problem: how do you save the settings for a
future session? The process takes several steps. 

Switch to the *scratch* buffer or open a new file and switch the mode
to lisp-interaction-mode (M-x lisp-interaction-mode). The buffer must
be in Lisp interaction mode for the C-j (control-j) trick to work.

Enter this (assoc ) statement below, and at the end of the line enter
a C-j. In list interaction mode if you enter a control-j at the end of
a line, Emacs will interpret that line.

(assoc 'font (frame-parameters)) 
(font . "-Adobe-Courier-Medium-R-Normal--14-140-75-75-M-90-ISO8859-1")

We see that I changed my font to Courier 14 point. Now we add a two
Lisp statements to your .emacs file (or .xemacs/init.el if you are
using both xemacs and real Emacs).

In the second statement note that the line you got from (assoc ) is
quoted and followed by the closing right paren of the statement.

(assq-delete-all 'font default-frame-alist)

  '(font  . "-Adobe-Courier-Medium-R-Normal--14-140-75-75-M-90-ISO8859-1"))

This seems to work in both GNU Emacs (real Emacs) and Xemacs.

Note that if you are clever with an application such as xfontsel, you
could determine what fonts were available on your system and create
the (font ) statement above. 

.Xdefaults and Emacs

You must restart your session after making changes to .Xdefaults. With
KDE and Gnome you can probably just log out (since KDM and GDM seem to
restart the X server).

Add this line to your .Xdefaults:

*Emacs.font: -adobe-courier-medium-r-normal-*-14-100-100-100-*-90-iso8859-1

You may have to run a font browser like xfontsel to figure out which
fonts you've got and how to specify them.  Some fonts wouldn't load on
my machine, even though xfontsel claimed that they were present.

Other Xdefaults stuff:

xterm*VT100.font: 9x15
XTerm*saveLines: 5500
xterm*VT100.geometry: 110x46+0+0
xterm*cursorBlink: on