Enriched mode is a buffer-local minor mode (see Minor Modes). When you visit a file that has been saved in the ‘text/enriched’ format, Emacs automatically enables Enriched mode, and applies the formatting information in the file to the buffer text. When you save a buffer with Enriched mode enabled, it is saved using the ‘text/enriched’ format, including the formatting information.
To create a new file of formatted text, visit the nonexistent file and type M-x enriched-mode. This command actually toggles Enriched mode. With a prefix argument, it enables Enriched mode if the argument is positive, and disables Enriched mode otherwise. If you disable Enriched mode, Emacs no longer saves the buffer using the ‘text/enriched’ format; any formatting properties that have been added to the buffer remain in the buffer, but they are not saved to disk.
Enriched mode does not save all Emacs text properties, only those specified in the variable enriched-translations. These include properties for fonts, colors, indentation, and justification.
If you visit a file and Emacs fails to recognize that it is in the ‘text/enriched’ format, type M-x format-decode-buffer. This command prompts for a file format, and re-reads the file in that format. Specifying the ‘text/enriched’ format automatically enables Enriched mode.
To view a ‘text/enriched’ file in raw form (as plain text with markup tags rather than formatted text), use M-x find-file-literally (see Visiting).
See Format Conversion in the Emacs Lisp Reference Manual, for details of how Emacs recognizes and converts file formats like ‘text/enriched’. See Text Properties in the Emacs Lisp Reference Manual, for more information about text properties.