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1.7. Apropos

Before wrapping up this first example, let's discuss Emacs's most important on-line help facility, apropos. Suppose you're one of those who have both BS and DEL keys and think it's a good idea for BS to erase the character preceding the cursor and DEL to erase the character following the cursor. You know that delete-backward-char is the command that accomplishes the former, but you don't know which command achieves the latter. You strongly suspect that Emacs must have such a command. How do you find it?

The answer is to use the apropos command, which allows you to search all known variables and functions for a pattern you specify. Try this:[7]

[7] All Emacs commands, regardless of which keys (if any) they're bound to, can be invoked with M-x command-name RET. Naturally, M-x is itself just a keybinding for a command, execute-extended-command, which prompts for the name of a command to execute.


  

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