Org's default outline with stars and no indents can become too cluttered for short documents. For book-like long documents, the effect is not as noticeable. Org provides an alternate stars and indentation scheme, as shown on the right in the following table. It uses only one star and indents text to line with the heading:
* Top level headline | * Top level headline ** Second level | * Second level *** 3rd level | * 3rd level some text | some text *** 3rd level | * 3rd level more text | more text * Another top level headline | * Another top level headline
To turn this mode on, use the minor mode,
org-indent-mode. Text lines
that are not headlines are prefixed with spaces to vertically align with the
To make more horizontal space, the headlines are shifted by two stars. This
can be configured by the
Only one star on each headline is visible, the rest are masked with the same
font color as the background. This font face can be configured with the
Note that turning on
nil; ‘2.’ below shows how this works.
To globally turn on
org-indent-mode for all files, customize the
To turn on indenting for individual files, use
#+STARTUP option as
Indent on startup makes Org use hard spaces to align text with headings as shown in examples below.
*** 3rd level more text, now indented
Org adapts indentations with paragraph filling, line wrapping, and structure editing2.
org-hide-leading-stars. For per-file preference, use these file
#+STARTUP: hidestars #+STARTUP: showstars
With stars hidden, the tree is shown as:
* Top level headline * Second level * 3rd level ...
Because Org makes the font color same as the background color to hide to
org-hide face may need tweaking to get the effect
right. For some black and white combinations,
grey90 on a white
background might mask the stars better.
org-odd-levels-only. To set this per-file, use either one of the following lines:
#+STARTUP: odd #+STARTUP: oddeven
To switch between single and double stars layouts, use M-x org-convert-to-odd-levels <RET> and M-x org-convert-to-oddeven-levels <RET>.
org-indent-mode also sets the
wrap-prefix correctly for indenting and wrapping long lines of
headlines or text. This minor mode handles
directly applied settings through
 Also see the variable
 Because ‘LEVEL=2’ has 3 stars, ‘LEVEL=3’ has 4 stars, and so on