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Reading about Helm and Ido for Emacs I noticed that they support similar features. The EmacsWiki provides great info about both, but I still can't tell what sets them apart.

  • What are the differences between these two tools?
  • Are there any others that provide similar functionality?
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up vote 6 down vote accepted

The main difference is that Helm can show you completions from multiple sources (e.g. files, buffers, bookmarks, etc. depending on how you configure it). So you don't have to invoke different commands to open different things, you can access them from a common command.

Also ido is not very good for completions where the possible items are long, because the minibuffer is not very suitable to show longer items.

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Also, Helm has lots and lots of predefined sources for completion from which you can simply choose what you want and use those. (Of course, you can also create your own sources if you want to.) The helm mailing list is a recommended place to visit if you don't get an answer to a related question here. – Tom Sep 22 '12 at 17:19

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