[OS X Emacs] How to efficiently work with shells/term? drag & drop, history, several instances

Hofert Jan Marius marius.hofert at math.ethz.ch
Thu Sep 22 10:09:46 EDT 2011

On 2011-09-22, at 14:54 , Jonathan Groll wrote:

> On Thu, 22 Sep 2011 12:04:38 +0000, "Hofert  Jan Marius" <marius.hofert at math.ethz.ch> wrote:
>>> This hint is questionable.  There is usually no need to start X11 for R, given that one can open a graphics window with quartz().  I only need X when R insists on firing up a Tcl/Tk UI, such as when installing packages and selecting mirror servers from within R.
> Sorry about that. Never used R myself, just recall reading that bit in
> the FAQ, and I thought since it's in the FAQ it must be a common
> problem.
> At one point I suspected there was a path issue within the term, which
> I've seen myself. Does not seem to be the case here!
> [...]
>> If I use: "M-x term" none of the commands work, no ls, no ssh, no R,
>> no cd, nothing. I always get the saming warning (as described). Is
>> there something wrong? 
> They should. What shell do you specify with M-x term - /bin/bash? 


> Also, as a point of diagnosis, can you start Emacs without
> customizations? For Aquamacs see:
> http://aquamacs.org/reporting-bugs.shtml (Before this one gets me into
> trouble, I don't know if the advice given here works, don't have a mac
> nearby to test! But we are looking at the equivalent of emacs -q)

I just did that. And indeed, I could execute all the commands.... okay, I got to explore more on that [is there a better solution than just commenting out parts of Preferences.el?]

>> In particular, I would like to know:
>> (4) what is exactly the difference between M-x shell and M-x term?
> M-x shell is a 'different' shell written in elisp. It isn't bash or
> whatever you're used to. And since it is written in elisp it also
> works on architectures such as windows.
> As the manual says about the Emacs Terminal Emulator: "This creates
> (or reuses) a buffer named `*terminal*', and runs a subshell with
> input coming from your keyboard, and output going to that buffer." You
> can select what subshell you run in M-x term - it doesn't have to be
> bash!

but then one can always use M-x term and does not have to use M-x shell, right? 
The only thing(s) I want is:
(a) being able to work in "the" shell [/bin/bash]
(b) being able to have as many features as possible from the Mac terminal.

>> (5) The problem described in (2) [the cursor moving], does this
>> happen for others, too, or am I the only one experiencing this?
> The terminal emulator has two modes - term mode and char mode.

Is term-mode the one obtained (by default) from M-x term and char mode the one obtained (by default) from M-x shell? 
The arrow keys for the history work with M-x term, but not M-x shell. 

> In term
> mode the arrow keys (at least under bash) do what you think they
> should - navigate command history etc. In char mode they move the
> cursor in the buffer.
> Cheers,
> Jonathan
> --
> jjg: Jonathan J. Groll : groll co za
> has_one { :blog => "http://bloggroll.com" }
> Sent from my computer device which runs on free software
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ETH Zurich
Dr. Marius Hofert
RiskLab, Department of Mathematics
HG E 65.2
Rämistrasse 101
8092 Zurich

Phone +41 44 632 2423
marius.hofert at math.ethz.ch

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