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Epsilon can save any new
bindings you have made and any macros you have defined for future
editing sessions. Epsilon uses two kinds of files for this purpose,
state files and command files (such as the
einit.ecm file Epsilon
normally uses to save your customizations).
The next section describes command files such as the
file. For most users, the
einit.ecm file is the best way to save
customizations, but users with a large number of customizations may
want to take advantage of the improved startup speed possible by using
a state file instead.
Both methods can save bindings, macros, and other sorts of
customizations, but they differ in many respects:
- A state file contains commands, macros, variables, and bindings.
A command file can contain macros, many types of variables, and
bindings, but it can't contain commands written in Epsilon's extension
language. (It can contain requests to load other files containing
such commands, though.)
- When Epsilon writes a state file, all currently defined commands,
macros and variables go into it. A command file contains just what
you put there.
- Epsilon can only read a state file during startup. It makes
the new invocation of Epsilon have the same commands as the Epsilon
that performed the write-state command that created that
state file. By contrast, Epsilon can load a command file at any time.
- A command file appears in a human-readable format, so you can
edit it as a normal file. By contrast, Epsilon stores a state file in
a binary format. To modify a state file, you read it into a fresh
Epsilon, use appropriate Epsilon commands (like bind-to-key to
change bindings), then save the state with the write-state
- Epsilon can read a state file much faster than a command file.
- Binary state files from one release of Epsilon usually aren't
compatible with state files from a different major release. Command
- To remove a particular customization from a command file, just
delete or comment out its line. Removing a customization from a state
file is more complicated, because Epsilon doesn't normally maintain
the original setting of a variable, or the original definition of an
EEL command you've redefined. You can use delete-name to
delete a macro, or explicitly set a variable back to its original
setting by looking that up in the documentation, but undoing some
customizations requires returning to the original state file and
reapplying just the customizations you want, via
The write-state command on Ctrl-F3 asks for the name of a file,
and writes the current state to that file. The file name has its
extension changed to ".sta" first, to indicate a state file. If you
don't provide a name, Epsilon uses the name
"epsilon-v14.sta", the same name that it looks for at
startup. (The state file name includes Epsilon's major version
number.) You can specify another state file for Epsilon to use at
startup with the -s flag.
By default, when you write a new state file, Epsilon makes a copy of
the old one in a file named ebackup.sta. You can turn backups off by
setting the variable want-state-file-backups to 0, or change
the backup file name by modifying the state-file-backup-name
template. See File Name Templates for information on templates.
Epsilon's default state file sits in its main directory. (In Windows,
this is normally under \Program Files.) If you write a
customized state file, it will go in your customizations directory
(see The Customization Directory), and Epsilon will read it instead of the
default state file. You can use Epsilon's -s flag to start
Epsilon with its default state file, ignoring your customized one, by
running it as "
epsilon -s original".
It's a good idea to keep all your customizations in one place, either
a state file or an einit.ecm file. If you have all your
customizations in a state file and want to instead store them all in
an einit.ecm file, run list-customizations, and then delete or
rename the customized state file in your customizations directory.
If you have all your customizations in an einit.ecm command file and
want to instead store them all in a state file, just run Epsilon,
letting it load your einit.ecm, run write-state, and delete or
rename your customized einit.ecm file.
If you customize Epsilon using an
einit.ecm file, Epsilon will
start up by reading its default state file, which contains its
standard settings. Then it will load your customizations from your
If you customize Epsilon using a state file, Epsilon will read your
customized state file instead of the default one.
(If you customize Epsilon using both methods, Epsilon will read your
customized state file, then load customizations in your
file on top. This is confusing, which is why we don't recommend this
The recommended method for saving customizations is to save them all
einit.ecm file, and never write a customized state file.
When you make a change you want to keep, using commands like
set-variable or bind-to-key, run Alt-x
list-customizations to put it in your
einit.ecm file. Or
set the record-customizations variable to keep all changes by
default. Or edit your
Remember to save your
einit.ecm file after changing it. Changes
will take effect the next time Epsilon starts, or you can use Alt-x
load-buffer to load them from an
einit.ecm file at once.
Epsilon Programmer's Editor 14.00 manual. Copyright (C) 1984, 2020 by Lugaru Software Ltd. All rights reserved.