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MATLAB Compare Tool in 2021b

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goc3 on 30 Dec 2021
Commented: goc3 on 12 Jun 2023
Some changes have been made to the comparison tool in MATLAB 2021b that are steps backwards, in my opinion. Or, there are preferences that I just cannot find that would revert to previous functionality.
  1. The comparison tool in 2021a and before omitted lines that are the same between the two files with a line that simply states [# unmodified lines hidden]. This was extremely helpful and now I have to scroll through an entire long file to see all the changes, some of which may be at the very end. I realize that we can navigate through the changes with the Previous and Next arrow buttons, but I find scrolling through the file to be more helpful, especially when many changes are present.
  2. The line numbers were hyperlinked, allowing the user to quickly open the file in question with the line that is clicked highlighted in the opened file.
  3. A summary of matched and unmatched lines was included at the bottom of the window.
  4. A "New" button in the toolstrip allowed for quickly opening up the dialog to compare more files.
  5. Save As and Print options also seem to be missing.
Is there any way to toggle these features back on in 2021b? If not, please add them back in to a later release.
goc3 on 30 Dec 2021
I would also add that new comparison windows always open to the same default size, instead of adhering to the resized size of an open or previous comparison window. Editor windows exhibit the expected behavior (of adhering to the size of open/resized windows), so I would also expect this behavior in the comparison windows.
goc3 on 12 Jan 2022
Another difference I found is the inability to copy text.
In the older version of the comparison tool one can highlight text from either document and paste that text elsewhere. I find that very helpful for manually merging some of the differences, as I often do not want to merge them all.
Unfortunately, highlighted text in the new comparison tool cannot be copied...

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Accepted Answer

Sivani Pentapati
Sivani Pentapati on 7 Jan 2022
Thank you sending this feedback. I have brought your feedback to the notice of the concerned people and the issues might be addressed in a future release.
In the meantime, in R2021b, you can change a setting which would let you use the text comparison as it was in R2021a. The setting can be configured with the following steps:
settingsRoot = settings();
textSetting = settingsRoot.comparisons.text.UseNoJava;
In order to change the behaviour of the text diff to R2021a for only the current MATLAB session, set the Temporary setting value of textSetting to false
textSetting.TemporaryValue = false;
Joel on 12 Jun 2023
Works. :-)
But does this need to be written in my startup.m (assuming I want it in every session)? Or will MATLAB store this setting in some permanent place?
goc3 on 12 Jun 2023
Joel, MATLAB has retained the modified setting for me. I imagine it should persist for you, as well.

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