: Learning GNU Emacs, 3rd Edition

3.1.2 Simple Searches

3.1.2 Simple Searches

Emacs also offers a simple, or nonincremental, search. To use a more straightforward search, type C-s Enter. Type the search string, press Enter, and Emacs begins the search. Simply press C-s again to repeat the search. To start a nonincremental search backwards through the file, press C-r Enter. Again, you type the search string and press Enter to begin the search.

The search icon on the toolbar (a magnifying glass over paper) and the Edit ? Search ? String Forward option run the same kind of a search. The prompt is slightly different. C-s Enter prompts you with Search: in the minibuffer while the toolbar icon and the menu option prompt with Search for string:. This is a minor difference; the searches are virtually identical otherwise.

Table 3-2 summarizes the simple search commands.

Table3-2.Simple search commands

Keystrokes Action
C-s Enter searchstringEnter Edit ? Search ? String Forward Start nonincremental search forward.
C-s Repeat search forward.
C-r Enter searchstringEnter Edit ? Search ? String Backwards Start nonincremental search backward.
C-r Repeat search backward.


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