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I'm using Ubuntu 12.10, and it has 4 workspaces.
Since it's not possible (or is it?) to make Emacs occupying two workspaces so that I could modify multiple files together(more than 2), I would like to open two Emacs and put them in different workspaces.
Is there anyway to do that? When I click the Emacs icon it just opens Emacs once. If I run it in shell the shell would be unavailable, so I won't be able to open a new Emacs either.


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migrated from stackoverflow.com Apr 12 '13 at 8:47

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Your question isn't clear. You can edit as many files as you want with Emacs, regardless of how many workspaces it is on. You can also pin Emacs, or any other graphical program, so that it is visible on all workspaces. And you can launch as many Emacs instances as you like from the command line - use emacs & to run emacs in the background, and repeat as many times as you like. Also, this is more appropriate for SuperUser than StackOverflow. –  Tyler Apr 12 '13 at 0:35

2 Answers 2

up vote 6 down vote accepted

I should think Ubuntu (well, I assume you're actually talking about Unity?) would provide for showing the same application window in multiple workspaces; but failing that, simply open additional Emacs frames with C-x52 and place them where you want them.

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Thank you! I'm new to Emacs and wasn't aware that I could have multiple frames; I just know how to make multiple windows. –  octref Apr 12 '13 at 0:38
FYI there are a bunch of useful frame-related bindings using that prefix. Type C-x 5 C-h to see them. –  phils Apr 12 '13 at 0:40

So the other answer about C-x 5 2 is quite nice, but it runs all open windows under the same emacs process. This can become problematic if you start using any emacs modes that do blocking I/O, like gnus. What'll happen is that all of emacs will become unresponsive while gnus is waiting to download mails. If this happens to you, you may want to run a separate emacs process for each open window you have. This will use more RAM, but the benefit is that gnus in one window won't interfere with the responsiveness of the other open windows.

In order to launch a new emacs process, you can type Alt+F2 to open Unity's "Run a command" prompt, and then type emacs there. This has the benefit of not leaving behind a terminal window that is blocked by emacs and can't do anything, because Unity launches the new emacs directly.

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Great advice. Originally I was creating new emacs windows by Ctrl+Alt+T and then emacs, and it's quite annoying since I have to open a shell before I open another emacs. Thank you very much! –  octref Apr 15 '13 at 21:13

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