Comments on ELPA

It would be helpful if this page described how to add a package to Gnu ELPA. Part of the answer is here:

But that does not describe how to specify the package meta-data. According to this post:

we don’t write a <package>-pkg.el file.

stephen_leake 2013-12-22 14:13 UTC

One thing this page doesn’t touch on, which I found a bit odd: how to actually install a package.

kenahoo 2014-04-14 03:32 UTC

So I agree with kenahoo. I came here because there was some functionality that I wanted that wasn’t in the base version of emacs, but it IS available in an ELPA package. I have no need today to actually do package devleopment. I just want to install an ELPA package, and start using it and go on my way.

BUT I CANNOT FIGURE OUT HOW. All of the instructions seemed aimed at people who “already know”.

pconrad 2014-12-15 17:41 UTC

Okay, maybe the main ELPA page could be clearer. Here is the method, for kenahoo, pconrad, and others:

1. Edit the ~/.emacs init file. If you can’t locate it, type Ctrl-X Ctrl-F (or “M-x find-file”) and enter ~/.emacs.

2. Near the top of this file, but not within a (parenthesized block) of course, include the following hunk of code:

(setq package-archives '(("gnu" . "")
                         ("marmalade" . "")
                         ("melpa" . "")))

3. Save the file, exit Emacs, restart Emacs.

4. Do either one of the following:

(a) Press function key F10 and navigate to “Options > Manage Emacs Packages”, or else
(b) Use the keyboard command “M-x package-list-packages

You may have to wait a minute or two for the connections to be successful. If you do not see a list of packages that are able to be added, then review the *Messages* buffer to see what the error messages display, and then correct them.

5. The displayed list of packages will contain three or four sections: “new” (since last session), “available” (i.e., not installed), “installed” (by having been added via the package manager), and “built-in” (comes with Emacs by default, no need to get it).

6. Do one of the following:

(a) Press function key F10 and navigate to Package and choose one of the options, or else
(b) Use the arrow keys or the Emacs line-motion keys Ctrl-N (next, down) or Ctrl-P (previous, up) to find one or more package you would like. Press “i” to mark it to be installed later. When done selecting, press “x” (for “execute”) which will install all the marked packages.

Those packages will be retrieved and installed in your ~/.emacs.d/elpa directory

It should not be necessary to edit the .emacs file to load them. When you close and re-start Emacs, the new packages should load into Emacs by default.

Hope this helps (Emacs experts, tell me if I omitted anything)

– epement 2014-12-16 13:32 UTC

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