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1.2 Installation

Org is included in all recent distributions of GNU Emacs, so you probably do not need to install it. Most users will simply activate Org and begin exploring its many features.

If, for one reason or another, you want to install Org on top of this pre-packaged version, there are three ways to do it:

  • by using the Emacs package system;
  • by downloading Org as an archive; or
  • by using Org’s git repository.

We strongly recommend sticking to a single installation method.

Using Emacs packaging system

Recent Emacs distributions include a packaging system which lets you install Elisp libraries. You can install Org from the “package menu", with M-x list-packages. See (emacs)Package Menu.

Important: You need to do this in a session where no ‘.org’ file has been visited, i.e., where no Org built-in function have been loaded. Otherwise autoload Org functions will mess up the installation.

If you want to use Org’s package repository, check out the Org ELPA page.

Downloading Org as an archive

You can download Org latest release from Org’s website. In this case, make sure you set the load path correctly in your Emacs init file:

(add-to-list 'load-path "~/path/to/orgdir/lisp")

The downloaded archive contains contributed libraries that are not included in Emacs. If you want to use them, add the ‘contrib/’ directory to your load path:

(add-to-list 'load-path "~/path/to/orgdir/contrib/lisp" t)

Optionally, you can compile the files and/or install them in your system. Run ‘make help’ to list compilation and installation options.

Using Org’s git repository

You can clone Org’s repository and install Org like this:

$ cd ~/src/
$ git clone https://code.orgmode.org/bzg/org-mode.git
$ cd org-mode/
$ make autoloads

Note that in this case, ‘make autoloads’ is mandatory: it defines Org’s version in ‘org-version.el’ and Org’s autoloads in ‘org-loaddefs.el’.

Remember to add the correct load path as described in the method above.

You can also compile with ‘make’, generate the documentation with ‘make doc’, create a local configuration with ‘make config’ and install Org with ‘make install’. Please run ‘make help’ to get the list of compilation/installation options.

For more detailed explanations on Org’s build system, please check the Org Build System page on Worg.