If you are on OSX Marked is fantastic and worth the cost. It supports a variety of preview formats and can perform syntax highlighting on the fly
I work in emacs and I have tried various markdown preview modes that work within emacs. None of them worked that well so I switched to Marked instead. I have Marked running next to emacs and every time I save in emacs, Marked updates automatically
Open buffer in Marked
Adding the function below to your .emacs is also useful to open the current markdown buffer in Marked
(defun markdown-preview-file ()
"run Marked on the current file and revert the buffer"
(format "open -a /Applications/Marked.app %s"
'(define-key markdown-mode-map (kbd "C-c r") 'markdown-preview-file))
I generally run emacs maximized with vertically split buffers. However when I want a Marked preview I need emacs to take up half the screen and Marked take up the other half. Divvy makes this process quick and easy. I have a binding for the left half of the screen, the right half, and maximized. Thus to go from maximized emacs to emacs and marked. Divvy is triggered with
Say I am working in emacs maximized and I want to preview a markdown buffer
cmd-shift-space l // shrink emacs to the left half of the screen using Divvy
C-c r // launch Marked with the current buffer
cmd-shift-space r // shrink marked to the right half of the screen using Divvy
Note this Divvy shortcuts are ones that you need to setup yourself