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2.2.2 Initial visibility

When Emacs first visits an Org file, the global state is set to showeverything, i.e., all file content is visible6. This can be configured through the variable org-startup-folded, or on a per-file basis by adding one of the following lines anywhere in the buffer:

#+STARTUP: overview
#+STARTUP: content
#+STARTUP: showall
#+STARTUP: showeverything

Furthermore, any entries with a ‘VISIBILITY’ property (see Properties and Columns) get their visibility adapted accordingly. Allowed values for this property are ‘folded’, ‘children’, ‘content’, and ‘all’.

C-u C-u TAB (org-set-startup-visibility)

Switch back to the startup visibility of the buffer, i.e., whatever is requested by startup options and ‘VISIBILITY’ properties in individual entries.


Footnotes

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When org-agenda-inhibit-startup is non-nil, Org does not honor the default visibility state when first opening a file for the agenda (see Speeding Up Your Agendas).