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RE: Invisible changes in ediff

From: Drew Adams
Subject: RE: Invisible changes in ediff
Date: Fri, 3 Jun 2011 14:46:52 -0700

> > I can see the current diff (highlighted in both windows).  
> > If it extends to the end (beginning) of one or both windows
> > then I use `C-v' (`M-v') to scroll the windows a bit.
> You have to do the commands manually.  There is no indicator.
> You also have to notice that it hits the boundary to know to run the
> commands.  You have to look every time and wonder if there are more
> changes.
> Also, do we know for certain that if you hit an unhighlighted line
> that there are no further changes?  I don't think so, but I am not
> certain.  If not, you have no way to know how far to scroll, in
> principle.

I fear that we are not talking about the same thing, and that someone else will
need to help you.

This is what I see:

Each diff highlights, in each buffer, a contiguous set of text - there are no
gaps of unhighlighted text for a given diff.

Each diff uses at most two highlighting faces, one for text that is the same,
another for the text that differs.  Text that is outside all diffs is not
highlighted at all.

If the current (highlighted) diff is larger than some threshold (dunno what that
is, but you could look it up) then you might need to hit `*' to get it to break
out the text that is the same from the text that is different.

When I move to a diff (using `n' or `p' or `g' or `j' etc.), I see the
highlighting in both windows.  If the highlighting in one or both extends to the
window edge, then I scroll (to see whether it extends beyond the edge).

Ediff automatically puts the current diff in the window center, so for a small
diff it typically does not extend past the window.  (In my case, I use
side-by-side frames; YMMV.)  It's pretty easy to see when it does, however
("notice that it hits the boundary").  And it's pretty easy to scroll the
highlighted text up/down.

I can only guess that I'm not seeing what you're seeing or we are talking about
different things altogether.

I would add that `ediff' is occasionally not as smart as I would like, and seems
to get thrown off wrt what a human might think is appropriate.  If that happens
then I use `C-x n n' to narrow the buffers to smaller chunks and use `ediff' on
just those chunks.  Dunno whether this is pertinent to what you're experiencing.

> Perhaps you do understand, but have not found it to be a significant
> problem for yourself personally in your own use cases in your
> experience.

Perhaps.  Maybe someone else can help more.  Sorry.

Again, maybe using one-window frames side by side helps.  Dunno.

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