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Re: suggestion for diff

From: Hans-Bernhard Broeker
Subject: Re: suggestion for diff
Date: 16 Oct 2000 15:38:59 GMT

John Skelton <address@hidden> wrote:
> It would be useful if:
>   diff --help
> mentioned which file is expected to be the New and which the Old,
> especially for a context diff!

Why would it? IMHO, neither of the two is really expected to be the
New or the Old file, and especially *not* in the case of context or
unified diffs.  In both of these formats, the headers of a full diff
clearly indicate which of the two files any given new, removed, or
changed line came from.

The only cases where new vs. old really becomes importand are:

1) 'ed' style diffs
2) use of 'diff' output for feeding it into 'patch'

2) is covered by the relevant node in the full docs (info diffutils).

> The current arguably wrong order is presumably based on the UNIX
> order, so probably cannot be changed.

Sorry, but I fail to see how one of the two possible orders could be
more correct than the other, or more wrong.
Hans-Bernhard Broeker (address@hidden)
Even if all the snow were burnt, ashes would remain.

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