Emacs 25.2 on Ubuntu

2017/07/03 emacs emacs25 Ubuntu

Emacs is undoubtedly the most important program on my computers. On my laptop, I use it to keep track of stuff with org-mode, read mail with mu4e, edit LaTeX with AUCTeX, and of course program. On servers, the first alias I define is usually qe='emacs -Q -nw', which give me a fast and responsive editor. With helm, doing just about anything (eg locating files, rgreping for something) is orders of magnitude faster and more convenient than any alternative I have tried.

I also try to keep up with the latest versions for software in general. Usually, whatever Ubuntu stable/Debian testing has is good enough not to justify the extra effort, but when I really need it, I grab the source and compile. That is usually only a minor hassle, but I try to restrict it to a few critical programs, otherwise it adds up. The major issue is not compiling, but having cruft in the filesystem (despite stow and checkinstall, it piles up). So I try to avoid it if I can.

Emacs 25.2 was released in April 2017, but there is no sign of an Ubuntu package for it yet. On various forums the PPA of kelleyk is recommended, but that does not have 25.2 for 17.04 (some files clash if you install previous versions).

Fortunately, Robert Bruce Park has now added Emacs 25.2 to the Ubuntu Emacs Lisp PPA, so having the latest of your favorite editor is only an add-apt-repository away. You may want to add a file to /etc/apt/preferences.d with contents

Package: *
Pin: release o=LP-PPA-ubuntu-elisp
Pin-Priority: 600

to make sure the right packages are installed.

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