See Single-Byte Character Set Support in The GNU Emacs Manual.
If the advice in the Emacs manual fails, try all of these methods before asking for further help:
mwmas your window manager. (Does anyone know a good generic solution to allow the use of the Meta key in Emacs with mwm?)
xevto find out what keysym your Meta key generates. It should be either
Meta_R. If it isn’t, use xmodmap to fix the situation. If Meta does generate
Meta_R, but M-x produces a non-ASCII character, put this in your ~/.Xdefaults file:
XTerm*eightBitInput: false XTerm*eightBitOutput: true
xtermis using is passing 8 bit characters. ‘stty -a’ (or ‘stty everything’) should show ‘cs8’ somewhere. If it shows ‘cs7’ instead, use ‘stty cs8 -istrip’ (or ‘stty pass8’) to fix it.
xtermand Emacs, the ‘-8’ argument may need to be given to rlogin to make it pass all 8 bits of every character.
xtermgenerate ESC W when you type M-W, which is the same conversion Emacs would make if it got the M-W anyway. In X11R4, the following resource specification will do this:
(This changes the behavior of the
xterms, you can specify this behavior with a translation:
XTerm.VT100.Translations: #override \ Meta<KeyPress>: string(0x1b) insert()
You might have to replace ‘Meta’ with ‘Alt’.