This has been bugging me for awhile. Recent versions of Emacs save _flymake files “inplace”, meaning in the same directory as the source file. Problem is, Flymake has a tendency to crash, leaving behind the corpses of various _flymake files, which in turn cause version control annoyances, automated build issues, unusual problems with caching in web frameworks, etc.
There’s an obscure FlymakeRuby entry on the EmacsWiki with a suggested fix, repeated here:
(defun flymake-create-temp-intemp (file-name prefix)
"Return file name in temporary directory for checking FILE-NAME.
This is a replacement for `flymake-create-temp-inplace'. The
difference is that it gives a file name in
`temporary-file-directory' instead of the same directory as
For the use of PREFIX see that function.
Note that not making the temporary file in another directory
\(like here) will not if the file you are checking depends on
relative paths to other files \(for the type of checks flymake
(unless (stringp file-name)
(error "Invalid file-name"))
(setq prefix "flymake"))
(let* ((name (concat
(ext (concat "." (file-name-extension file-name)))
(temp-name (make-temp-file name nil ext))
(flymake-log 3 "create-temp-intemp: file=%s temp=%s" file-name temp-name)
Add this to lisp/progmodes/flymake.el in your Emacs distro, and then call it from the init method corresponding to your target language. PHP, for example:
;;;; php-specific init-cleanup routines
(defun flymake-php-init ()
(let* ((temp-file (flymake-init-create-temp-buffer-copy
(list "php" (list "-f" local-file "-l"))))
'flymake-create-temp-inplace has been replaced with
'flymake-create-temp-intemp. Be sure to remove or recompile the corresponding flymake.elc file.
Now _flymake junk will be saved to where you have defined temporary-file-directory in .emacs. In my case:
(setq temporary-file-directory "~/.emacs.d/tmp/")
Yay. Much less annoying.