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9.3.2 Completion Commands

Here is a list of the completion commands defined in the minibuffer when completion is allowed.


Complete the text before point in the minibuffer as much as possible (minibuffer-complete).


Complete up to one word from the minibuffer text before point (minibuffer-complete-word). <SPC> for completion is not available when entering a file name, since file names often include spaces.


Submit the text in the minibuffer as the argument, possibly completing first as described in the next node (minibuffer-complete-and-exit). See section Strict Completion.


Display a list of possible completions of the text before point (minibuffer-completion-help).

<SPC> completes like <TAB>, but only up to the next hyphen or space. If you have ‘auto-f’ in the minibuffer and type <SPC>, it finds that the completion is ‘auto-fill-mode’, but it only inserts ‘ill-’, giving ‘auto-fill-’. Another <SPC> at this point completes all the way to ‘auto-fill-mode’. The command that implements this behavior is called minibuffer-complete-word.

When you display a list of possible completions, you can choose one from it:


Clicking mouse button 1 or 2 on a completion possibility chooses that completion (mouse-choose-completion). You must click in the list of completions, not in the minibuffer.


Typing <PRIOR> or <PAGE-UP>, or M-v, while in the minibuffer, selects the window showing the completion list buffer (switch-to-completions). This paves the way for using the commands below. (Selecting that window in other ways has the same effect.)


Typing <RET> in the completion list buffer chooses the completion that point is in or next to (choose-completion). To use this command, you must first switch to the completion list window.


Typing the right-arrow key <RIGHT> in the completion list buffer moves point to the following completion possibility (next-completion).


Typing the left-arrow key <LEFT> in the completion list buffer moves point to the previous completion possibility (previous-completion).

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