When editing a post I usually want to write a concise summary (especially when suggesting an edit).

This would be much easier if I was able to get a diff for my changes. Sometimes editing a post takes quite some time and at the end I don't remember what I changed in the beginning.

  • 4
    This is really useful when making large edits to FAQ posts here. Dec 16, 2019 at 21:28
  • 1
    Just to add, sometimes I'll make a bunch of changes, but then when looking at the diff after, I'll change my mind and revert them. This would be a lot easier if I saw the diff before submitting.
    – wjandrea
    Nov 26, 2020 at 19:52

2 Answers 2


You can use a diff checker. E.g diff checker.

Make sure to copy/paste the original post into the diff checker before editing, then you can always get the diff while editing the post.

  • 7
    I think the questioner was interested in a more integrated solution. Dec 16, 2019 at 23:06
  • 3
    Yes probably, but just wanted to add the answer as a temporary solution, SE updates don’t come right away :)
    – user569408
    Dec 16, 2019 at 23:10
  • 1
    Thank you for the idea - it is a workaround.
    – guntbert
    Dec 18, 2019 at 22:30
  • This is useful, but I can't find anything that uses quite the same diff engine (or settings) as SO, so the results often look weird.
    – wjandrea
    Nov 26, 2020 at 20:10

After editing you can click on the "Edited X ago" link, and see the differences highlighted.

You then have less than 5 minutes to read and summarize your changes, and place them onto the "Edit Summary" line. If you complete your one-liner within the grace period it will appear as a single edit.

Despite the ease of doing that, a checkbox in the Editor would be a great addition.

Show the Diff Checkbox

That would put all the information together on the same screen.

  • 1
    I didn't think of the grace period in this way, but you are right.
    – guntbert
    Dec 18, 2019 at 22:31
  • If the edit window were bigger that would help too, a lot to fit on the page and accommodate all screen widths, here's hoping this request is successful.
    – Rob
    Dec 18, 2019 at 23:41
  • 1
    One problem with relying on the grace period is you might run into a conflict with another user's concurrent, approved edit. I just had that happen -- twice on the same question -- as I tried to edit my original edit.
    – plr108
    Feb 13, 2020 at 19:49
  • 1
    Note that some sites like SO will silently drop changes to the summary during the grace period unless you change something else as well.
    – wjandrea
    Nov 26, 2020 at 19:55

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .