If you use git on the command line, you may have noticed that diff hunks often show the method signature in the hunk header (the line that starts with
@@), like this:
diff --git a/Program.cs b/Program.cs index 655a213..5ae1016 100644 --- a/Program.cs +++ b/Program.cs @@ -13,6 +13,7 @@ static void Main(string args) Console.WriteLine("Hello World!"); Console.WriteLine("Hello World!"); Console.WriteLine("Hello World!"); + Console.WriteLine("blah"); }
This is very useful to know where you are when looking at a diff.
Git has a few built-in regex patterns to detect methods in some languages, including C#; they are defined in
userdiff.c. But by default, these patterns are not used… you need to tell git which file extensions should be associated with which language. This can be specified in a
.gitattributes file at the root of your git repository:
With this done,
git diff should show an output similar to the sample above.
Are we done yet? Well, almost. See, the patterns for C# were added to git a long time ago, and C# has changed quite a bit since then. Some new keywords that can now be part of a method signature are not recognized by the built-in pattern, e.g.
partial. This is quite annoying, because when some code has changed in an async method, the diff hunk header shows the signature of a previous, non-async method, or the line where the class is declared, which is confusing.
My first impulse was to submit a pull request on Github to add the missing keywords; however I soon realized that the git repository on Github is just a mirror and does not accept pull requests… The contribution process consists of sending a patch to the git mailing list, with a long and annoying checklist of requirements. This process seemed so tedious that I gave it up. I honestly don’t know why they use such a difficult and old-fashioned contribution process, it just discourages casual contributors. But that’s a bit off-topic, so let’s move on and try to solve the problem some other way.
Fortunately, the built-in patterns can be overridden in the git configuration. To define the function name pattern for C#, you need to define the
diff.csharp.xfuncname setting in your git config file:
[diff "csharp"] xfuncname = ^[ \\t]*(((static|public|internal|private|protected|new|virtual|sealed|override|unsafe|async|partial)[ \\t]+)*[<>@.~_[:alnum:]]+[ \\t]+[<>@._[:alnum:]]+[ \\t]*\\(.*\\))[ \\t]*$
As you can see, it’s the same pattern as in
userdiff.c, with the backslashes escaped and the missing keywords added. With this pattern,
git diff now shows the correct function signature in async methods:
diff --git a/Program.cs b/Program.cs index 655a213..5ae1016 100644 --- a/Program.cs +++ b/Program.cs @@ -31,5 +32,6 @@ static async Task FooAsync() Console.WriteLine("Hello world"); Console.WriteLine("Hello world"); Console.WriteLine("Hello world"); + await Task.Delay(100); } }
It took me a while to figure it out, so I hope you find it helpful!