Emacs client for http://paste.debian.net/
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Debpaste is an Emacs interface for the Debian Paste Service. It provides receiving, posting and deleting pastes using XML-RPC.

Highlighting (i.e. enabling a major-mode depending on a paste language) is supported.


XmlRpc package is required. It can be installed from MELPA or Marmalade.



As usual you need to add this to your .emacs:

(add-to-list 'load-path "/path/to/debpaste-dir")

After that you can either load the package on emacs start with:

(require 'debpaste)

or add a bunch of lines for autoloading functions and put into eval-after-load what should be put there, for example:

(autoload 'debpaste-display-paste "debpaste" nil t)
(autoload 'debpaste-paste-region "debpaste" nil t)
(autoload 'debpaste-paste-buffer "debpaste" nil t)
(autoload 'debpaste-delete-paste "debpaste" nil t)
(with-eval-after-load 'debpaste
  (delete 'debpaste-display-received-info-in-minibuffer
  (define-key debpaste-command-map "i"
  (define-key debpaste-command-map "l"


The package can be installed from MELPA (with M-x package-install or M-x list-packages).

Using and configuration

You can explore variables available for customizing with:

M-x customize-group RET debpaste


The package provides a keymap debpaste-command-map with basic commands. Example of binding and modifying the keymap:

(global-set-key (kbd "M-D") 'debpaste-command-map)
(with-eval-after-load 'debpaste
  (define-key debpaste-command-map "mp"
  (define-key debpaste-command-map "mr"

After that you can press Meta-Shift-d m p for displaying information of the last posted paste in minibuffer. And of course you can see key bindings with M-D C-h.

Receiving a paste

M-x debpaste-display-paste

You will be prompted for a paste ID (URL at point can help - see the docstring of that function). The received paste will be displayed in a separate buffer and additional information about the paste will be shown in the minibuffer. More info can be displayed using:

M-x debpaste-display-received-info-in-buffer

This info can be configured with the following variables:

  • debpaste-param-description-alist,
  • debpaste-received-info-buffer-params,
  • debpaste-received-info-minibuffer-params,
  • debpaste-info-buffer-format,
  • debpaste-info-minibuffer-format,
  • debpaste-ignore-empty-params.

Posting a paste

M-x debpaste-paste-region
M-x debpaste-paste-buffer

With prefix, you will be prompted for posting options. Variables with default values of posting options:

  • debpaste-user-name,
  • debpaste-paste-language,
  • debpaste-expire-time,
  • debpaste-paste-is-hidden.

After posting a paste, some information about the paste will be shown in minibuffer and a paste URL will be put into kill-ring. More info about the last posted paste can be displayed using:

M-x debpaste-display-posted-info-in-buffer

Deleting a paste

M-x debpaste-delete-paste

You will be prompted for SHA1 digest of the paste (you receive it after posting a paste).

Advanced configuration

Buffer names

If you don’t like default names of debpaste buffers, you can modify them by configuring these variables:

  • debpaste-received-paste-buffer-name-function,
  • debpaste-received-info-buffer-name-function,
  • debpaste-posted-info-buffer-name-function,
  • debpaste-buffer-name-regexp.

Don’t forget to modify the last regexp: it is used for debpaste-kill-all-buffers and debpaste-quit-buffers functions.


 (lambda (info) (format "Debian paste %s"
                        (debpaste-get-param-val 'id info)))
 (lambda (info) (format " Useless info about the paste %s"
                        (debpaste-get-param-val 'id info)))
 debpaste-buffer-name-regexp "^Debian paste .*$\\|^ Useless info about the paste .*$")

Filter functions

The main points for hacking are variables with filter functions:

  • debpaste-received-filter-functions,
  • debpaste-posted-filter-functions,
  • debpaste-deleted-filter-functions.

These functions can be used for editing/adding/removing info parameters or for side effects like putting url into kill-ring or displaying info in the minibuffer. See debpaste-action for details.

For example, if you don’t want paste URL to be put into the kill-ring but want to see a message with some customized info after posting a paste, you can use something like this:

 '(debpaste-filter-intern debpaste-filter-error-check
   debpaste-filter-url debpaste-save-last-posted-info
 '(view-url download-url delete-url))

Instead of setting debpaste-posted-filter-functions, you may use a more complicated decision with delete and add-to-list functions.


Isn’t it good to receive a paste with a proper major mode enabled? A variable debpaste-language-alist contains associations of languages supported by the paste server and emacs major-modes. If you know what mode can be used for a particular language or if you see errors in those associations, you may mail me or open an issue.