January 21, 2005 5:53 PM
It makes sense to disable creation of backup files and auto-save when editing sensitive files in Emacs. Especially on a remote system where resources are limited.

Put this in your .emacs to permanently disable backups and auto-save:

;disable backup
(setq backup-inhibited t)
;disable auto save
(setq auto-save-default nil)

If you prefer disabling these features only when editing certain types of files, this minor mode ought to help:

(define-minor-mode sensitive-mode
  "For sensitive files like password lists.
It disables backup creation and auto saving.

With no argument, this command toggles the mode.
Non-null prefix argument turns on the mode.
Null prefix argument turns off the mode."
  ;; The initial value.
  ;; The indicator for the mode line.
  " Sensitive"
  ;; The minor mode bindings.
  (if (symbol-value sensitive-mode)
	;; disable backups
	(set (make-local-variable 'backup-inhibited) t)	
	;; disable auto-save
	(if auto-save-default
	    (auto-save-mode -1)))
    ;resort to default value of backup-inhibited
    (kill-local-variable 'backup-inhibited)
    ;resort to default auto save setting
    (if auto-save-default
	(auto-save-mode 1))))

Once the above snippet has been evaluated in Emacs, M-x sensitive will disable backups and auto-save in the current buffer. All other buffers will continue to have these features.

I usually set sensitive mode to turn on by default for files having the gpg extension. The following code when put in your .emacs does exactly that:

(setq auto-mode-alist
 (append '(("\\.gpg$" . sensitive-mode))


Copyright © 2004-2011 Anirudh Sasikumar. All rights reserved.
Last Updated: February 28, 2005 7:10 PM