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auctex /

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1 Introduction to AUCTeX

This section of the AUCTeX manual gives a brief overview of what AUCTeX
is, and the section is also available as a `README' file.  It is *not*
an attempt to document AUCTeX.  Real documentation for AUCTeX is
available in the rest of the manual, which you can find in the `doc'

Read the `INSTALL' or `INSTALL.windows' file respectively for
information about how to install AUCTeX.  The files comprise the same
information as the Installation chapter in the AUCTeX manual.

   If you are upgrading from the previous version of AUCTeX, the latest
changes can be found in the `CHANGES' file.  If you are upgrading from
an older version, read the History chapter in the AUCTeX manual.

   AUCTeX is a comprehensive customizable integrated environment for
writing input files for TeX/LaTeX/ConTeXt using GNU Emacs.

   AUCTeX lets you run TeX/LaTeX/ConTeXt and LaTeX/ConTeXt-related
tools, such as a output filters or post processor from inside Emacs.
Especially `running LaTeX' is interesting, as AUCTeX lets you browse
through the errors TeX reported, while it moves the cursor directly to
the reported error, and displays some documentation for that particular
error.  This will even work when the document is spread over several

   AUCTeX automatically indents your `LaTeX-source', not only as you
write it -- you can also let it indent and format an entire document.
It has a special outline feature, which can greatly help you `getting an
overview' of a document.

   Apart from these special features, AUCTeX provides a large range of
handy Emacs macros, which in several different ways can help you write
your LaTeX/ConTeXt documents fast and painlessly.

   All features of AUCTeX are documented using the GNU Emacs online
documentation system.  That is, documentation for any command is just a
key click away!

   AUCTeX is written entirely in Emacs-Lisp, and hence you can easily
add new features for your own needs.  It was not made as part of any
particular employment or project (apart from the AUCTeX project
itself).  AUCTeX is distributed under the `GNU Emacs General Public
License' and may therefore almost freely be copied and redistributed.

   The next sections are a short introduction to some `actual' features.
For further information, refer to the built-in online documentation of

1.1 Indentation and filling

AUCTeX may automatically indent your document as you write it. By
pressing <LFD> instead of <RET> at the end of a line, the current line
is indented by two spaces according to the current environment level,
and the cursor is moved down one line.  By pressing <TAB>, the current
line is indented, and the cursor stays where it is.  The well-known
Emacs feature `fill-paragraph' (`M-q') is reimplemented especially for
AUCTeX to follow the indentation (even in commented parts of the
document).  A special command `LaTeX-fill-buffer' lets you indent an
entire document like the well-known C utility indent (this time, only
according to the LaTeX structure :-).

1.2 Completion

By studying your `\documentclass' command (in the top of your
document), and consulting a precompiled list of (La)TeX symbols from a
large number of TeX and LaTeX files, AUCTeX is aware of the LaTeX
commands you should be able to use in this particular document.  This
`knowledge' of AUCTeX is used for two purposes.

  1. To make you able to `complete' partly written LaTeX commands. You
     may e.g. write `\renew' and press `M-<TAB>'
     (`TeX-complete-symbol'), and then AUCTeX will complete the word
     `\renewcommand' for you. In case of ambiguity it will display a
     list of possible completions.

  2. To aid you inserting environments, that is \begin - \end pairs.
     This is done by pressing C-c C-e (LaTeX-environment), and you will
     be prompted for which `environment' to insert.

1.3 Editing your document

A number of more or less intelligent keyboard macros have been defined
to aid you editing your document.  The most important are listed below.

     (`C-c C-e') Insert a `\begin{}' -- `\end{}' pair as described

     (`C-c C-s') Insert one of `\chapter', `\section', etc.

     (`C-c C-f C-r', `C-c C-f C-i', `C-c C-f C-b') Insert one of
     `\textrm{ }'), `\textit{ \/}' `\textbf{ }' etc.

   A number of additional functions are available.  But it would be far
too much to write about here.  Refer to the rest of the AUCTeX
documentation for further information.

1.4 Running LaTeX

When invoking one of the commands `TeX-command-master' (`C-c C-c') or
`TeX-command-region' (`C-c C-r') LaTeX is run on either the entire
current document or a given region of it.  The Emacs view is split in
two, and the output of TeX is printed in the second half of the screen,
as you may simultaneously continue editing your document.  In case TeX
finds any errors when processing your input you can call the function
`TeX-next-error' (`C-c `') which will move the cursor to the first
given error, and display a short explanatory text along with the
message TeX gave.  This procedure may be repeated until all errors have
been displayed.  By pressing `C-c C-w' (`TeX-toggle-debug-boxes') you
can toggle whether the browser also should notify over-full/under-full
boxes or not.

   Once you've successfully formatted your document, you may preview or
print it by invoking `TeX-command-master' again.

1.5 Outlines

Along with AUCTeX comes support for outline mode for Emacs, which lets
you browse the sectioning structure of your document, while you will
still be able to use the full power of the rest of the AUCTeX

1.6 Availability

The most recent version is always available at


   WWW users may want to check out the AUCTeX page at


1.7 Contacts

There has been established a mailing list for help, bug reports, feature
requests and general discussion about AUCTeX.  You're very welcome to
join.  Traffic average at an article by day, but they come in bursts.
If you are only interested in information on updates, you could refer to
the newsgroups `comp.text.tex' and `gnu.emacs.sources'.

   If you want to contact the AUCTeX mailing list, send mail to
`mailto:auc-tex-subscribe@sunsite.dk' in order to join.  Articles
should be sent to `mailto:auc-tex@sunsite.dk'.

   To contact the current maintainers of AUCTeX directly, email