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psgml-mode and emacs 24.1

I've used psgml for some while now, when creating website pages using XML and psgml-mode together. However, when I upgraded emacs to 24.1 on my Windows platforms, I found that psgml ceased to work.

There were two problems. The first I could work around, which involved to disappearance of (make-local-hook). This is called by psgml-mode, but according to this bug report, the function has been obsolete since emacs 21. Defining a stub make-local-hook in the psgml lisp code fixed that. The second problem caused me to give up; it involved the use of now-obsolete back-tick syntax, as witnessed by these lines from the emacs *Message* buffer:

  Loading `psgml': old-style backquotes detected!
  For information about GNU Emacs and the GNU system, type C-h C-a.
  Loading `psgml-parse': old-style backquotes detected! [2 times]
  Parsing prolog...
  Invalid function: (\` (sgml-is-delim ((\, delim)) ((\, context)) move))
  (New file)
  Loading vc-cvs...done
  Parsing prolog...
  Invalid function: (\` (sgml-is-delim ((\, delim)) ((\, context)) move))

The last line in the buffer was caused by hitting the tab key. Looking at the code, there were many such uses. I also found that the last update to psgml-mode occurred in 2009. Perhaps it was time to see if there was another tool.

There is of course. nxml-mode is shipped with emacs (certainly since emacs 23) and seems to offer all the features that I need. To turn it on, I added this to my .emacs file:

  (require 'nxml-mode)
  (add-to-list 'auto-mode-alist '("\\.html$" . nxml-mode))
  (add-to-list 'auto-mode-alist '("\\.xml$" . nxml-mode))

Rest in peace, psgml-mode.

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