Still useful after all these years.
January 18, 2020

Still useful after all these years.

Kaleb-John Loo | TrustRadius Reviewer
Score 9 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User

Overall Satisfaction with GNU Emacs

Emacs is utilized as one of the primary text editors available for global use across our remote build servers. This allows engineers to modify files on a system with a familiar interface that they can access on their own local computer. Emacs is adept at language recognition and highlights syntax in a meaningful way. It also allows users to set their own custom configurations for their user profile and is expandable via installation packages.


  • Fast
  • Syntax highlighting


  • Shortcuts are not standard.
  • Sometimes certain key combinations puts it into an unfamiliar state.
  • Emacs is free to use.
  • Most firmware and electrical engineers are familiar with Emacs making it easy to set up new employees to immediately start working.
Emacs can be easier to use than Vim as it is more similar to modern text editors. Its graphical interface is also better than anything Vim has to offer. Emacs also has better syntax highlighting and recognition of coding languages. Interestingly, Emacs handles clipboard copy and pasting into other programs a lot better than Vim does. Overall, if you know how to use Emacs, it is often preferred over Vim.
Everything that you need to know about Emacs can be found on the internet. There are many Emacs "cheat sheets" that list out all of the shortcuts for Emacs. There are videos on how to use Emacs. Emacs is easily installed using the standard Linux package managers and can also be easily updated through them as well. There are tutorials on how to customize Emacs to your liking.

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Emacs is best utilized on a Unix system where it can be easily installed and accessed. It allows for quick editing of files on a system whether you are accessing it locally through the console or remotely via an ssh connection. Once users familiarize themselves with the Emacs shortcuts, it becomes a pretty efficient text manipulation program. On a standard Windows computer, it is less likely to use Emacs for code editing, especially if you have a local repository on your host machine.


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