I'm trying to use a custom setup for org-mode 8.2 on Windows 7, but it does not work as expected.

My ´Emacs`version: GNU Emacs 24.2.1 (i386-mingw-nt6.1.7601) of 2012-08-29 on MARVIN

What I tried:


in the file ~/.emacs I have (among others) those lines:

(if (boundp 'org-mode-user-lisp-path)
    (add-to-list 'load-path org-mode-user-lisp-path)
  (add-to-list 'load-path (expand-file-name "~/org-mode/org_current/lisp")))

(setq default-directory "C:/Users/mypath/" )
(if (boundp 'org-mode-user-contrib-lisp-path)
    (add-to-list 'load-path org-mode-user-contrib-lisp-path)
  (add-to-list 'load-path (expand-file-name "~/org-mode/org_current/contrib/lisp/"))
  (add-to-list 'load-path (expand-file-name "~/org-mode/morelisp/")))

(require 'icicles)
(require 'dired+)
(require 'org)
(require 'bookmark+)

(load "org")

and later

(load "C:/Users/mypath/org-config/myname_orgmodeconfig.el")



(add-to-list 'auto-mode-alist '("\\.\\(org\\|org_archive\\|txt\\)$" . org-mode))

;; Standard key bindings
(global-set-key "\C-cl" 'org-store-link)
(global-set-key "\C-ca" 'org-agenda)

(if (boundp 'org-user-agenda-files)
    (setq org-agenda-files org-user-agenda-files)
  (setq org-agenda-files (quote ("~/org"

So I try to use all org-files in the path ~/org as agenda files.

When I launch emacs, I get the following result in the *Messages buffer:

Turning OFF Icicle mode...done
Turning ON Icicle mode...done
Turning OFF Icicle mode...done
Turning ON Icicle mode...done
Turning ON Icicle mode...done
Turning OFF Icicle mode...done
Loading c:/Users/mypath/org-mode/org_current/lisp/org.el (source)...done
Loading c:/Users/mypath/org-config/myname_orgmodeconfig.el (source)...done
Loading paren...done
For information about GNU Emacs and the GNU system, type C-h C-a.

The Problem

So I assume, as the file myname_orgmodeconfig.el has been loaded, all the elisp code inside should have been executed and it should have also set my agenda files. However, the list of agenda files is empty after startup. When I then manually ofen the file myname_orgmodeconfig.el and execute the command eval-buffer, everything is fine.

How can I fix that?

  • A thought: when your file is loaded org-agenda-files is bound, so it is set to the value of org-user-agenda-files. I don't see that in any of the code you posted - and cannot find that variable in my environment where I used org-mode. What is it set to in your environment?
    – verdammelt
    Jan 14, 2014 at 2:35
  • thanks for your comment! In fact, my code can not be that wrong, because if I do eval-buffer on the loaded buffer, everything works fine. But loading it alone does not do the trick. In my system, the variable org-agenda-files is nil after startup, org-user-agenda-files is not found at all. Jan 14, 2014 at 8:57
  • Oh, I see that i've been mis-reading your code! hmm.
    – verdammelt
    Jan 14, 2014 at 12:24
  • 1
    If you M-x describe-variable RET auto-mode-alist RET after opening Emacs regularly, do you see your definitions -- i.e., \\.\\(org\\|org_archive\\|txt\\)$? I suspect that there is already a built-in definition for a txt extension being equal to text-mode, so you should check that potential conflict. If the auto-mode-alist is set as you desire, then everything is working correctly. There is no such thing as org-user-agenda-files, so your if / then / else statement is simply moving along to the else portion of that code.
    – lawlist
    Jan 15, 2014 at 15:36
  • 1
    I'm not sure when the variable org-agenda-file-regexp was introduced, but it's included in Org version 8 -- I think that is what you are looking for -- describe that variable and see if that helps any. Also describe the variable org-agenda-files and look at the section relating to org-agenda-file-regexp. See also the function org-files-list -- i.e., M-x describe-function ...
    – lawlist
    Jan 15, 2014 at 15:46

2 Answers 2


Initial Post (January 15, 2014):

The following works for Org version 8, but I'm not sure when the regexp variable was first introduced -- it may work with earlier Org versions also. This example contemplates that there will be .org and/or .todo files in the home directory -- not sub-directories. The function org-agenda-files crawls the directory specified in the variable org-agenda-files. See also the function org-files-list. The functions are non-interactive, so M-x ... won't work with them.

(setq org-agenda-files (list "~/"))

(setq org-agenda-file-regexp "\\`[^.].*\\.org\\|.todo\\'")

After opening Emacs, evaluate the function (org-agenda-files).

EDIT (January 21, 2014):

The following word search of the source files for Org version 8 is illustrative of the fact that the function org-agenda-files is called whenever another function needs the value of the variable org-agenda-files. In other words, the value of the variable org-agenda-files is determined anytime the function org-agenda-files is called.

  314            (string :tag "Headline"))
  315          (list :tag "Files to be searched"
  316:           (const org-agenda-files)
  317            (list
  318             (const :format "" quote)
 1529  tsia-down          Sort by inactive timestamp, late first
 1530  category-keep      Keep the default order of categories, corresponding to the
 1531:         sequence in `org-agenda-files'.
 1532  category-up        Sort alphabetically by category, A-Z.
 1533  category-down      Sort alphabetically by category, Z-A.
 1554  agenda listing for the day.  Of the entries without a time indication, keep
 1555  the grouped in categories, don't sort the categories, but keep them in
 1556: the sequence given in `org-agenda-files'.  Within each category sort by
 1557  priority.
 2167      (list
 2168       (vector
 2169:       (if (get 'org-agenda-files 'org-restrict)
 2170     "Restricted to single file"
 2171   "Edit File List")
 2172        '(org-edit-agenda-file-list)
 2173:       (not (get 'org-agenda-files 'org-restrict)))
 2174       "--")
 2175:     (mapcar 'org-file-menu-entry (org-agenda-files))))
 2176    (org-agenda-set-mode-name)
 2177    (apply
 2720   (unless (org-bound-and-true-p org-agenda-keep-restricted-file-list)
 2721     ;; There is a request to keep the file list in place
 2722:    (put 'org-agenda-files 'org-restrict nil))
 2723   (setq org-agenda-restrict nil)
 2724   (move-marker org-agenda-restrict-begin nil)
 2742        ;; Establish the restriction, if any
 2743        (when (and (not org-agenda-overriding-restriction) restriction)
 2744:  (put 'org-agenda-files 'org-restrict (list bfn))
 2745   (cond
 2746    ((eq restriction 'region)
 2834     (user-error "This is not an Org-mode file"))
 2835   (unless restriction
 2836:    (put 'org-agenda-files 'org-restrict (list bfn))
 2837     (org-call-with-arg 'org-timeline arg)))
 2838         ((equal org-keys "#") (call-interactively 'org-agenda-list-stuck-projects))
 3677        (setq org-agenda-contributing-files nil)
 3678        (setq org-agenda-columns-active nil)
 3679:       (org-agenda-prepare-buffers (org-agenda-files nil 'ifmode))
 3680        (setq org-todo-keywords-for-agenda
 3681       (org-uniquify org-todo-keywords-for-agenda))
 4141  ;;;###autoload
 4142  (defun org-agenda-list (&optional arg start-day span with-hour)
 4143:   "Produce a daily/weekly view from all files in variable `org-agenda-files'.
 4144  The view will be for the current day or week, but from the overview buffer
 4145  you will be able to go to other days/weeks.
 4186       (if (or (eq ndays 7) (eq ndays 14))
 4187       org-agenda-start-on-weekday))
 4188:     (thefiles (org-agenda-files nil 'ifmode))
 4189      (files thefiles)
 4190      (start (if (or (null org-agenda-start-on-weekday)
 4308         (put-text-property s (1- (point)) 'org-day-cnt day-cnt))))
 4309        (when (and org-agenda-clockreport-mode clocktable-start)
 4310:  (let ((org-agenda-files (org-agenda-files nil 'ifmode))
 4311         ;; the above line is to ensure the restricted range!
 4312         (p (copy-sequence org-agenda-clockreport-parameter-plist))
 4549   (if hdl-only (setq regexp (concat org-outline-regexp-bol ".*?"
 4550                     regexp))))
 4551:       (setq files (org-agenda-files nil 'ifmode))
 4552        (when (eq (car org-agenda-text-search-extra-files) 'agenda-archives)
 4553   (pop org-agenda-text-search-extra-files)
 4732               ,org-select-this-todo-keyword
 4733               current-prefix-arg ,arg)))
 4734:       (setq files (org-agenda-files nil 'ifmode)
 4735       rtnall nil)
 4736        (while (setq file (pop files))
 4780  ;;;###autoload
 4781  (defun org-tags-view (&optional todo-only match)
 4782:   "Show all headlines for all `org-agenda-files' matching a TAGS criterion.
 4783  The prefix arg TODO-ONLY limits the search to TODO entries."
 4784    (interactive "P")
 4811               (list 'org-tags-view `(quote ,todo-only)
 4812                 (list 'if 'current-prefix-arg nil `(quote ,org-agenda-query-string))))
 4813:       (setq files (org-agenda-files nil 'ifmode)
 4814       rtnall nil)
 4815        (while (setq file (pop files))
 5056    (todo-wds (if (member "*" todo)
 5057              (progn
 5058:           (org-agenda-prepare-buffers (org-agenda-files
 5059                             nil 'ifmode))
 5060            (org-delete-all
 5228  Use a separate line for each org file to check.  Or, if you omit the file name,
 5229: all files listed in `org-agenda-files' will be checked automatically:
 5231     &%%(org-diary)
 5251    (let* ((files (if (and entry (stringp entry) (string-match "\\S-" entry))
 5252           (list entry)
 5253:        (org-agenda-files t)))
 5254    (time (org-float-time))
 5255    file rtn results)
 7104   (setq org-agenda-restrict (current-buffer))
 7105   (setq org-agenda-overriding-restriction 'subtree)
 7106:  (put 'org-agenda-files 'org-restrict
 7107        (list (buffer-file-name (buffer-base-buffer))))
 7108   (org-back-to-heading t)
 7116            (save-excursion (org-end-of-subtree t t)))
 7117   (message "Locking agenda restriction to subtree"))
 7118:     (put 'org-agenda-files 'org-restrict
 7119    (list (buffer-file-name (buffer-base-buffer))))
 7120      (setq org-agenda-restrict nil)
 7133    (setq org-agenda-overriding-restriction nil)
 7134    (setq org-agenda-restrict nil)
 7135:   (put 'org-agenda-files 'org-restrict nil)
 7136    (move-marker org-agenda-restrict-begin nil)
 7137    (move-marker org-agenda-restrict-end nil)
 8180    (setq mode-name
 8181   (list "Org-Agenda"
 8182:        (if (get 'org-agenda-files 'org-restrict) " []" "")
 8183         " "
 8184         '(:eval (org-agenda-span-name org-agenda-current-span))
 9997  ;;;###autoload
 9998  (defun org-agenda-to-appt (&optional refresh filter &rest args)
 9999:   "Activate appointments found in `org-agenda-files'.
 10000  With a \\[universal-argument] prefix, refresh the list of
 10001  appointments.
 10042           (time-to-days (current-time))))
 10043       (org-agenda-restrict nil)
 10044:      (files (org-agenda-files 'unrestricted)) entries file
 10045       (org-agenda-buffer nil))
 10046      ;; Get all entries which may contain an appt

   38  ;;
   39  ;; Put the following in /somewhere/at/home/diary.org and make sure
   40: ;; that this file is in `org-agenda-files`
   41  ;;
   42  ;; %%(org-bbdb-anniversaries)

 1659           (org-global-tags-completion-table
 1660            (if (equal char "G")
 1661:           (org-agenda-files)
 1662              (and file (list file)))))
 1663          (org-add-colon-after-tag-completion t)

 2268   (setq scope (eval scope)))
 2269         ((eq scope 'agenda)
 2270:  (setq scope (org-agenda-files t)))
 2271         ((eq scope 'agenda-with-archives)
 2272:  (setq scope (org-agenda-files t))
 2273   (setq scope (org-add-archive-files scope)))
 2274         ((eq scope 'file-with-archives)

  462       (append
  463        ;; Agenda files and all associated archives
  464:       (org-agenda-files t org-id-search-archives)
  465        ;; Explicit extra files
  466        (if (symbolp org-id-extra-files)

   46    :group 'org)
   48: (defcustom org-mobile-files '(org-agenda-files)
   49    "Files to be staged for MobileOrg.
   50  This is basically a list of files and directories.  Files will be staged
   52  In addition to this, the list may also contain the following symbols:
   54: org-agenda-files
   55       This means include the complete, unrestricted list of files given in
   56:      the variable `org-agenda-files'.
   57  org-agenda-text-search-extra-files
   58       Include the files given in the variable
   60    :group 'org-mobile
   61    :type '(list :greedy t
   62:         (option (const :tag "org-agenda-files" org-agenda-files))
   63          (option (const :tag "org-agenda-text-search-extra-files"
   64                 org-agenda-text-search-extra-files))
  272         (lambda (f)
  273           (cond
  274:           ((eq f 'org-agenda-files)
  275:            (org-agenda-files t include-archives))
  276            ((eq f 'org-agenda-text-search-extra-files)
  277             (delq 'agenda-archives
  327       (message "Creating agendas...")
  328       (let ((inhibit-redisplay t)
  329:        (org-agenda-files (mapcar 'car org-mobile-files-alist)))
  330         (org-mobile-create-sumo-agenda))
  331       (message "Creating agendas...done")
  377   ;; Make an agenda view of flagged entries, but only in the files
  378   ;; where stuff has been added.
  379:  (put 'org-agenda-files 'org-restrict org-mobile-last-flagged-files)
  380   (let ((org-agenda-keep-restricted-file-list t))
  381     (org-agenda nil "?"))))))

 2145  - a specification of the files to be considered, either a list of files,
 2146    or a symbol whose function or variable value will be used to retrieve
 2147:   a file name or a list of file names.  If you use `org-agenda-files' for
 2148    that, all agenda files will be scanned for targets.  Nil means consider
 2149    headings in the current buffer.
 2176    :type '(repeat
 2177     (cons
 2178:     (choice :value org-agenda-files
 2179:         (const :tag "All agenda files" org-agenda-files)
 2180          (const :tag "Current buffer" nil)
 2181          (function) (variable) (file))
 3595  (put 'org-category 'safe-local-variable #'(lambda (x) (or (symbolp x) (stringp x))))
 3597: (defcustom org-agenda-files nil
 3598    "The files to be used for agenda display.
 3599  Entries may be added to this list with \\[org-agenda-file-to-front] and removed with
 3615  (defcustom org-agenda-file-regexp "\\`[^.].*\\.org\\'"
 3616:   "Regular expression to match files for `org-agenda-files'.
 3617  If any element in the list in that variable contains a directory instead
 3618  of a normal file, all files in that directory that are matched by this
 3642  (defcustom org-agenda-skip-unavailable-files nil
 3643:   "Non-nil means to just skip non-reachable files in `org-agenda-files'.
 3644  A nil value means to remove them, after a query, from the list."
 3645    :group 'org-agenda
 7021  (defun org-files-list ()
 7022:   "Return `org-agenda-files' list, plus all open org-mode files.
 7023  This is useful for operations that need to scan all of a user's
 7024  open and agenda-wise Org files."
 7025:   (let ((files (mapcar 'expand-file-name (org-agenda-files))))
 7026      (dolist (buf (buffer-list))
 7027        (with-current-buffer buf
 11261      (cond
 11262       ((null files) (setq files (list (current-buffer))))
 11263:      ((eq files 'org-agenda-files)
 11264:       (setq files (org-agenda-files 'unrestricted)))
 11265       ((and (symbolp files) (fboundp files))
 11266        (setq files (funcall files)))
 14009             (if (and files (car files))
 14010                 files
 14011:              (org-agenda-files))))))))
 14013  (defun org-make-tags-matcher (match)
 14496                   org-complete-tags-always-offer-all-agenda-tags
 14497                   (org-global-tags-completion-table
 14498:                   (org-agenda-files))))
 14499            org-last-tags-completion-table table
 14500            current-tags (org-split-string current ":")
 14993            (setq scope (eval scope)))
 14994           ((eq scope 'agenda)
 14995:           (setq scope (org-agenda-files t)))
 14996           ((eq scope 'agenda-with-archives)
 14997:           (setq scope (org-agenda-files t))
 14998            (setq scope (org-add-archive-files scope)))
 14999           ((eq scope 'file)
 17814    (let* ((bfn nil)
 17815       (agenda-files (and (eq predicate 'agenda)
 17816:                 (mapcar 'file-truename (org-agenda-files t))))
 17817       (filter
 17818        (cond
 17841         (buffer-list)))))
 17843: (defun org-agenda-files (&optional unrestricted archives)
 17844    "Get the list of agenda files.
 17845  Optional UNRESTRICTED means return the full list even if a restriction
 17850    (let ((files
 17851       (cond
 17852:       ((and (not unrestricted) (get 'org-agenda-files 'org-restrict)))
 17853:       ((stringp org-agenda-files) (org-read-agenda-file-list))
 17854:       ((listp org-agenda-files) org-agenda-files)
 17855:       (t (error "Invalid value of `org-agenda-files'")))))
 17856      (setq files (apply 'append
 17857                 (mapcar (lambda (f)
 17877  buffer."
 17878    (member (or file (buffer-file-name))
 17879:           (org-agenda-files t)))
 17881  (defun org-edit-agenda-file-list ()
 17882    "Edit the list of agenda files.
 17883  Depending on setup, this either uses customize to edit the variable
 17884: `org-agenda-files', or it visits the file that is holding the list.  In the
 17885  latter case, the buffer is set up in a way that saving it automatically kills
 17886  the buffer and restores the previous window configuration."
 17887    (interactive)
 17888:   (if (stringp org-agenda-files)
 17889        (let ((cw (current-window-configuration)))
 17890:     (find-file org-agenda-files)
 17891      (org-set-local 'org-window-configuration cw)
 17892      (org-add-hook 'after-save-hook
 17900      (message "%s" (substitute-command-keys
 17901                 "Edit list and finish with \\[save-buffer]")))
 17902:     (customize-variable 'org-agenda-files)))
 17904  (defun org-store-new-agenda-file-list (list)
 17905    "Set new value for the agenda file list and save it correctly."
 17906:   (if (stringp org-agenda-files)
 17907        (let ((fe (org-read-agenda-file-list t)) b u)
 17908:     (while (setq b (find-buffer-visiting org-agenda-files))
 17909        (kill-buffer b))
 17910:     (with-temp-file org-agenda-files
 17911        (insert
 17912         (mapconcat
 17919      (let ((org-mode-hook nil) (org-inhibit-startup t)
 17920        (org-insert-mode-line-in-empty-file nil))
 17921:       (setq org-agenda-files list)
 17922:       (customize-save-variable 'org-agenda-files org-agenda-files))))
 17924  (defun org-read-agenda-file-list (&optional pair-with-expansion)
 17927  filenames, used by `org-store-new-agenda-file-list' to write back
 17928  un-expanded file names."
 17929:   (when (file-directory-p org-agenda-files)
 17930:     (error "`org-agenda-files' cannot be a single directory"))
 17931:   (when (stringp org-agenda-files)
 17932      (with-temp-buffer
 17933:       (insert-file-contents org-agenda-files)
 17934        (mapcar
 17935         (lambda (f)
 17943  ;;;###autoload
 17944  (defun org-cycle-agenda-files ()
 17945:   "Cycle through the files in `org-agenda-files'.
 17946  If the current buffer visits an agenda file, find the next one in the list.
 17947  If the current buffer does not, find the first agenda file."
 17948    (interactive)
 17949:   (let* ((fs (org-agenda-files t))
 17950       (files (append fs (list (car fs))))
 17951       (tcf (if buffer-file-name (file-truename buffer-file-name)))
 17970      (file-alist (mapcar (lambda (x)
 17971                    (cons (file-truename x) x))
 17972:                 (org-agenda-files t)))
 17973      (ctf (file-truename
 17974            (or buffer-file-name
 17988  (defun org-remove-file (&optional file)
 17989:   "Remove current file from the list of files in variable `org-agenda-files'.
 17990  These are the files which are being checked for agenda entries.
 17991  Optional argument FILE means use this file instead of the current."
 18001                      (file-truename x))
 18002                   nil x))
 18003:                (org-agenda-files t)))))
 18004:     (if (not (= (length files) (length (org-agenda-files t))))
 18005      (progn
 18006        (org-store-new-agenda-file-list files)
 21087         ["Occur in all agenda files" org-occur-in-agenda-files t]
 21088         "--")
 21089:       (mapcar 'org-file-menu-entry (org-agenda-files t))))))))
 21091  ;;;; Documentation
 21710    "Call `multi-occur' with buffers for all agenda files."
 21711    (interactive "sOrg-files matching: \np")
 21712:   (let* ((files (org-agenda-files))
 21713       (tnames (mapcar 'file-truename files))
 21714       (extra org-agenda-text-search-extra-files)

  830        ;; `org-check-agenda-file'.  Instead we remove any non-existent
  831        ;; agenda file from the list.
  832:       (let ((files (org-remove-if-not 'file-exists-p (org-agenda-files t))))
  833   (org-export-async-start
  834       (lambda (results)
  842          ',files)
  843        output-files)))
  844:     (let ((files (org-agenda-files t)))
  845        (org-agenda-prepare-buffers files)
  846        (unwind-protect
  865    (interactive)
  866    (if async
  867:       (let ((files (org-remove-if-not 'file-exists-p (org-agenda-files t))))
  868   (org-export-async-start
  869       (lambda (dummy)
  872          'icalendar))
  873     `(apply 'org-icalendar--combine-files nil ',files)))
  874:     (apply 'org-icalendar--combine-files nil (org-agenda-files t))))
  876  (defun org-icalendar-export-current-agenda (file)
  906            (if file-markers (push pos (cdr file-markers))
  907              (push (list file pos) restriction))))))
  908:     (org-agenda-files nil 'ifmode))))
  910  (defun org-icalendar--combine-files (restriction &rest files)

The real problem was the following:

1) apparently I had problems loading my configuration files due to some permissions problems (see https://stackoverflow.com/questions/885793/emacs-error-when-calling-server-start/1313577#1313577) which interrupted the evaluation of my .emacs file

2) after loading my custom agenda setup (including list of agenda-files) from the external file C:/Users/mypath/org-config/myname_orgmodeconfig.el there were some more configuration commands in my .emacs file. One of them apparently did overwrite the list of agenda files...


By placing the line (load-file "C:/Users/mypath/org-config/myname_orgmodeconfig.el") to the end of my .emacs file, I made sure, that the custom settings are not overwritten afterwards.

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