diff

/dif/ 1. A change listing, especially giving differences between (and additions to) different versions of a piece of source code or documentation (the term is often used in the plural "diffs"). "Send me your diffs for the Jargon File!"

Compare vdiff.

2. Specifically, such a listing produced by the diff Unix command, especially when used as input to the patch utility (which actually performs the modifications). This is a common method of distributing patches and source updates.

3. To compare (whether or not by use of automated tools on machine-readable files).

See also vdiff, mod.

[Jargon File]

Last updated: 1995-02-10

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Nearby terms: Didot point « die « die horribly « diff » Difference Engine » difference equation » differential backup


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