20.6.1 Auto Fill Mode
"Auto Fill" mode is a minor mode in which lines are broken
automatically when they become too wide. Breaking happens only when
you type a <SPC> or <RET>.
Enable or disable Auto Fill mode.
In Auto Fill mode, break lines when appropriate.
`M-x auto-fill-mode' turns Auto Fill mode on if it was off, or off
if it was on. With a positive numeric argument the command always turns
Auto Fill mode on, and with a negative argument it always turns it off.
The presence of the word `Fill' in the mode line, inside the
parentheses, indicates that Auto Fill mode is in effect. Auto Fill mode
is a minor mode; you can turn it on or off for each buffer individually.
Note: Minor Modes.
In Auto Fill mode, lines are broken automatically at spaces when
they get longer than desired. Line breaking and rearrangement takes
place only when you type <SPC> or <RET>. To insert a space or newline
without permitting line-breaking, type `C-q <SPC>' or `C-q <LFD>'
(recall that a newline is really a linefeed). `C-o' inserts a newline
without line breaking.
Auto Fill mode works well with Lisp mode: when it makes a new line in
Lisp mode, it indents that line with <TAB>. If a line ending in a Lisp
comment gets too long, the text of the comment is split into two
comment lines. Optionally, new comment delimiters are inserted at the
end of the first line and the beginning of the second, so that each line
is a separate comment. The variable `comment-multi-line' controls the
choice (Note: Comments).
Auto Fill mode does not refill entire paragraphs. It can break
lines but cannot merge lines. Editing in the middle of a paragraph can
result in a paragraph that is not correctly filled. The easiest way to
make the paragraph properly filled again is using an explicit fill
Many users like Auto Fill mode and want to use it in all text files.
The section on init files explains how you can arrange this permanently
for yourself. Note: Init File.
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