-*- mode:outline -*-
This file describes various problems that have been encountered in
running XEmacs on Windows 95, 98 and NT. It has been updated for
This is the first release of XEmacs on Windows. In testing it has
proved to be extremely stable in general use (but see the gnus and
subprocess problems below), but not all features or packages work
Use `C-c C-f' to move to the next equal level of outline, and
`C-c C-b' to move to previous equal level. `C-h m' will give more
info about the Outline mode.
Also, Try finding the things you need using one of the search commands
XEmacs provides (e.g. `C-s').
Remember your .emacs file! ~\.emacs is your Emacs init file. If
you observe strange problems, invoke XEmacs with the `-q' option
and see if you can repeat the problem.
* Problems with running XEmacs
** Conflicts with FSF NTEmacs
Depending on how it is installed, FSF NTEmacs may setup various EMACS*
variables in your environment. The presence of these variables may
cause XEmacs to fail at startup, cause you to see corrupted
doc-strings, or cause other random problems.
You should remove these variables from your environment. These
variables are not required to run FSF NTEmacs if you start it by
** XEmacs can't find my .emacs file
XEmacs looks for your .emacs in your "home" directory. XEmacs decides
that your "home" directory is, in order of preference:
- The value of the HOME environment variable, if the variable exists.
- The value of the HOMEDRIVE and HOMEPATH environment variables, if
these variables both exist.
- The directory that XEmacs was started from.
** XEmacs can't find any packages
XEmacs looks for your packages in subdirectories of a directory which
is set at compile-time, and defaults to C:\Program Files\XEmacs. The
variable configure-package-path holds the actual path that was
compiled into your copy of XEmacs.
The compile-time default location can be overridden by the
EMACSPACKAGEPATH environment variable or by the
SOFTWARE\GNU\XEmacs\EMACSPACKAGEPATH registry entry. You should check
that these variables, if they exist, point to the actual location of
your package tree.
** XEmacs sometimes crashes when using gnus
This is a known bug in this release of XEmacs on Windows.
If you want to use gnus anyway, you should minimize any possible data
loss by saving any modified buffers before you start and ensuring that
you haven't set gnus-use-dribble-file to nil or disabled the normal
XEmacs auto-save mechanism.
** XEmacs doesn't die when shutting down Windows 95 or 98
When shutting down Windows 95 or 98 you may see a dialog that says
"xemacs / You must quit this program before you quit Windows".
It is safe to
"Click OK to quit the program and Windows",
but you won't be offered a chance to save any modified XEmacs buffers.
* Look and feel
** Key bindings
The C-z, C-x, C-c, and C-v keystrokes have traditional uses in both
emacs and Windows programs. XEmacs binds these keys to their
traditional emacs uses, and provides Windows 3.x style bindings for
the Cut, Copy and Paste functions.
Function XEmacs binding
You can rebind keys to make XEmacs more Windows-compatible; for
example, to bind C-z to undo:
(global-set-key [(control z)] 'undo)
Rebindind C-x and C-c is trickier because by default these are prefix
keys in XEmacs. See the "Key Bindings" node in the XEmacs manual.
** Behavior of selected regions
Selected regions behave differently in XEmacs from typical Windows
programs. The pc-select package provides various functions to enable
the standard Windows behavior for selected regions (eg mark via
shift-arrow, self-inserting deletes region, etc).
** Limitations on the use of the AltGr key.
In some locale and OS combinations you can't generate M-AltGr-key or
C-M-AltGr-key sequences at all.
To generate C-AltGr-key or C-M-AltGr-key sequences you must use the
right-hand Control key and you must press it *after* AltGr.
These limitations arise from fundamental problems in the way that the
win32 API reports AltGr key events. There isn't anything that XEmacs
can do to work round these problems that it isn't already doing.
You may want to create alternative bindings if any of the standard
XEmacs bindings require you to use some combination of Control or Meta
* Features not fully supported in this release
** Limited support for subprocesses
Attempting to use call-process to run a 16bit program gives a
"Spawning child process: Exec format error". For example shell-command
fails under Windows 95 and 98 if you use command.com or any other
16bit program as your shell.
XEmacs may incorrectly quote your call-process command if it contains
double quotes, backslashes or spaces.
start-process and functions that rely on it are supported under Windows 95,
98 and NT. However, starting a 16bit program that requires keyboard input
may cause XEmacs to hang or crash under Windows 95 and 98, and will leave
the orphaned 16bit program consuming all available CPU time.
Sending signals to subprocesses started by call-process or by
start-process fails with a "Cannot send signal to process" error under
Windows 95 and 98. As a side effect of this, quitting XEmacs while it
is still running subprocesses causes it to crash under Windows 95 and
** Changing fonts from the Options menu
The "Font" and "Size" entries on the Options menu don't work yet. This
will be fixed in a future release. In the meantime, you can either
change face fonts with customize or manually; for example:
(set-face-font 'default "Lucida Console:Regular:10::Western")
(set-face-font 'modeline "MS Sans Serif:Regular:10::Western")
Font weight and style and character set must be supplied in English as
above. Common weights and styles are "Regular", "Regular Italic",
"Bold" and "Bold Italic". Common character sets are "Western",
"Central European" and "OEM/DOS".
Windows 95 only comes with one fixed-width font that is suitable for
use by XEmacs, namely "Courier New".
** No MULE support
This release of XEmacs on Windows does not contain MULE support. MULE
support has not been a priority for the XEmacs on Windows developers.
This release of XEmacs on Windows does not support printing natively.
You can use the lpr-command and lpr-switches variables to specify an
external print program.