Feature #8498

Add an undo system for lighttable and darkroom

Added by antoarts - over 8 years ago. Updated about 2 years ago.

Target version:
Start date:
Due date:
% Done:


Estimated time:
Affected Version:
git master branch
hardware architecture:


I tried Darktable today, and I like it. Finally a decent photo manager for Linux. Instinctively, I tried to use CTRL+Z to undo an action I didn't like in the edit mode (Darkroom). Having keyboard shortcuts for undoing or redoing tasks would be very useful.

Related issues

Has duplicate darktable - Feature #10042: Undo?Duplicate08/09/2014


#1 Updated by Jose Carlos Garcia Sogo over 8 years ago

The problem here is defining what an action is, as in darktable each change in a slider could be considered as such. The thing is that we don't have dialogs and an 'Apply' button We could reset enabled plugin by pressing ctrl-z, but that could be a problem for people wanting to undo only part of what they changed in the plugin.

#2 Updated by autark - over 8 years ago

While I agree that it's not desirable to have a too fine-grained undo/redo history, not having undo and redo at all feels very limiting; it is definitely a turn-off for me, especially given darktable's somewhat surprising user interface conventions that lend themselves to all kinds of mistakes for a newcomer. And surely you can find a way to coalesce repeated similar actions into a single one if that turns out to be necessary.

#3 Updated by Sladjan Ristic over 7 years ago

I miss the undo when I change the rating of an image, and because of the rating filter it disappears, so I have to go searching for it. A simple undo for such actions would be very convenient.

#4 Updated by Richard Wonka over 7 years ago

undo for lighttable changes in metadata and tags would be very welcome indeed.

Along the same lines goes the deletion vs. moving to trash of images. I have lost data because of this in combination the odd hover-vs-selection behaviour in the lighttable.

#5 Updated by Tobias Ellinghaus over 7 years ago

Sorry, moving to trash will most probably not come. Undo OTOH might be a good thing.

#6 Updated by Tobias Ellinghaus over 7 years ago

  • % Done changed from 0 to 20
  • Target version set to Future
  • Status changed from New to Triaged
  • Category set to General
  • Subject changed from Add keyboard shortcuts for undoing and redoing actions in Darkroom to Add an undo system for lighttable and darkroom

The undo system should be a bit more fine grained than the history stack.

#7 Updated by Antoine Beaupré about 7 years ago

I got stung by this recently, when trying to render a previous version of an image in the history stack. What I did:

  1. select a previous version in the history
  2. head to the light table
  3. export the file

What I expected: the history should stay the same

What actually happend: the remaining history was trashed.

That was freaking painful. I can also recount horror stories of playing with the stack directly in my first attempts ("what does compress do?" - "aw crap, it destroys history, wasn't this supposed to be a non-destructive editor?")... Maybe full undo isn't required and we need something like #9019 or #8769. See particularly: #8620.

#8 Updated by Ralf Brown over 5 years ago

The history stack is useful, but as others have pointed out it is not a replacement for a good undo system, especially given how easy it is to trash the history stack. And the current history stack is not fine-grained enough to be viable as a workaround for missing undo even if it were more resilient, since I can't undo just a single slider change (for example) if I've changed multiple settings in a module without switching modules.

Aftershot Pro has both, and its history stack is also somewhat more fine-grained than DT's (multiple consecutive entries can be from changes to a single tool).

#9 Updated by Paolo Astengo over 5 years ago

I fully, fully agree with Ralf! For me it is too easy to do unwanted modifications to my history stack.

Please, switch this item to "high" (at least "medium" ... :) )

#10 Updated by Roman Lebedev over 5 years ago

#11 Updated by Melroy van den Berg over 5 years ago

I agree to have a basic revert feature, one is better then nothing (but remember, less is more... ;) ). Indeed please change the prio.

#12 Updated by Valentino Dell'Aica over 5 years ago

As a beginner to darktable, the undo feature come very handy: try a setting: wrong ? undo last state.
When I try to edit some mask usually an undo action can be the sequence press mouse button, move, release it. When moving a slider, the some or when scroll is used, until I leave field or stop for a fixed amount of time.

I know this could become very cumbersome to implement, but form me this is an essential feature.

#13 Updated by F M about 5 years ago

I've been using Darktalbe for many years now and I sill hit Ctrl-Z when I make a mistake. :) This definately seems high priority to me...

#14 Updated by Sbara Gnaus almost 5 years ago

I miss this feature too. Please add it, thanks.

#15 Updated by Zoltan Balogh about 2 years ago

I randomly stumbled upon this item. I guess someone could close it now? Looks like this feature now exists.

#16 Updated by Tobias Ellinghaus about 2 years ago

  • bitness set to 64-bit
  • System set to all
  • Affected Version set to git master branch

Lighttable doesn't have undo yet.

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