Skip to main content

View colored, incremental diff in workspace, given patch or two files, or from stdin, with side by side and auto pager support

Project description


Build status

Term based tool to view colored, incremental diff in Git/Mercurial/Svn workspace, given patch or two files, or from stdin, with side by side and auto pager support. Requires python (>= 2.5.0) and less.

default side by side


Install with pip

Cdiff is already listed on PyPI, you can install with pip if you have the tool.

pip install --upgrade cdiff

Install with

You can also run the from the source if you don’t have pip.

git clone
cd cdiff
./ install

Download directly

Just save to whatever directory which is in your $PATH, for example, $HOME/bin is in my $PATH, so I save the script there and name as cdiff.

curl -ksS > ~/bin/cdiff
chmod +x ~/bin/cdiff


Show usage:

cdiff -h

Read diff from local modification in a Git/Mercurial/Svn workspace:

cd proj-workspace
cdiff                       # view colored incremental udiff
cdiff -s                    # view side by side
cdiff -s -w 90              # use text width 90 other than default 80

Read the log (e.g. git log -p) in a Git/Mercurial/Svn workspace:

cd proj-workspace
cdiff -l
cdiff -ls                   # equivalent to ``cdiff -l -s``
cdiff -ls -w90

Pipe in a diff:

git log -p -2 | cdiff -s
git show 15bfa5 | cdiff -s
svn diff -r PREV | cdiff -s

View a diff (patch) file:

cdiff foo.patch
cdiff foo.patch -s
cdiff foo.patch -s -w 90

View diff between two files (wrapper of diff):

cdiff foo           # equivalent to diff -u foo | cdiff
cdiff foo -s

Redirect output to another patch file is safe:

svn diff -r PREV | cdiff -s > my.patch


  • Verified on travis with python 2.5, 2.6, 2.7, 3.2, 3.3 and pypy
  • Only takes unified diff for input
  • Side by side mode has alignment problem for wide chars
  • Pull requests are very welcome (please run make test to verify)

See also

I have another tool coderev which generates side-by-side diff pages for code review from two given files or directories, I found it’s not easy to extend to support git so invented cdiff. Idea of ansi color markup is also from project colordiff.

Change log

Version 0.6 (2013-02-20)

  • A few performance tuning and code clean up
  • Add unit test cases with coverage 70%
  • Show merge history in svn log

Version 0.5.1 (2013-02-19)

  • Fixed incorrect yield on diff missing eof
  • Fixed a bug in diff format probe
  • Handle keyboard interrupt and large diffs in non-color mode
  • Code clean up

Version 0.5 (2013-02-18)

  • Support read output from svn diff --log and hg log -p
  • Streamline reading large patch set
  • New --log (-l) option to read revision control diff log (thanks to Steven Myint)

Version 0.4 (2013-02-16)

  • New option -c WHEN (–color WHEN) to support auto test
  • Auto regression test now on Travis

Version 0.3 (2013-02-07)

  • Support compare two files (wrapper of diff)

Version 0.2 (2013-02-06)

  • Move to top dir for better meta info management

Version 0.1 (2013-02-05)

  • New –version option
  • now read version from source code

Version 0.0.4 (2013-02-04)

  • Add CHANGES for history track and better versioning

Version 0.0.3 (2013-02-04)

  • Publish on PyPI, supports read patch from file, pipe and diff output from revision tools (thanks to Steven Myint)

Project details

Download files

Download the file for your platform. If you're not sure which to choose, learn more about installing packages.

Filename, size & hash SHA256 hash help File type Python version Upload date
cdiff-0.6.tar.gz (20.2 kB) Copy SHA256 hash SHA256 Source None

Supported by

Elastic Elastic Search Pingdom Pingdom Monitoring Google Google BigQuery Sentry Sentry Error logging AWS AWS Cloud computing DataDog DataDog Monitoring Fastly Fastly CDN SignalFx SignalFx Supporter DigiCert DigiCert EV certificate StatusPage StatusPage Status page