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5.4 Priorities

If you use Org mode extensively, you may end up with enough TODO items that it starts to make sense to prioritize them. Prioritizing can be done by placing a priority cookie into the headline of a TODO item, like this

     *** TODO [#A] Write letter to Sam Fortune

By default, Org mode supports three priorities: ‘A’, ‘B’, and ‘C’. ‘A’ is the highest priority. An entry without a cookie is treated just like priority ‘B’. Priorities make a difference only for sorting in the agenda (see Weekly/daily agenda); outside the agenda, they have no inherent meaning to Org mode. The cookies can be highlighted with special faces by customizing org-priority-faces.

Priorities can be attached to any outline node; they do not need to be TODO items.

C-c ,
Set the priority of the current headline (org-priority). The command prompts for a priority character ‘A’, ‘B’ or ‘C’. When you press <SPC> instead, the priority cookie is removed from the headline. The priorities can also be changed “remotely” from the agenda buffer with the , command (see Agenda commands).
S-<UP>     (org-priority-up)
S-<DOWN>     (org-priority-down)
Increase/decrease priority of current headline1. Note that these keys are also used to modify timestamps (see Creating timestamps). See also Conflicts, for a discussion of the interaction with shift-selection-mode.

You can change the range of allowed priorities by setting the options org-highest-priority, org-lowest-priority, and org-default-priority. For an individual buffer, you may set these values (highest, lowest, default) like this (please make sure that the highest priority is earlier in the alphabet than the lowest priority):



[1] See also the option org-priority-start-cycle-with-default.