A discussion on Reddit leaves me wondering...


I’m not seeing any significant changes to my images processed over the years with the 4.6.1 update, so it’s a non issue to me, but this guy is really having a problem. Does anyone care to take a look?

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I don’t feel like wading into reddit but I feel I have seen that user on the forum here in the past but maybe not in any case they could provide one of those old xmp and people here could test it for changes between the version of DT that created it and the latest version

Likely then a dev might be able to comment on the observations if indeed this holds as to whether its a bug or simply a known casualty introduced by changes in the software…

One of the comments has suggested that they visit here so hopefully they decide to…

Sad to see trolls on Reddit just writing obviously wrong information. Sight!


There was one edit from Boris here on the forum that looked very different with 4.6 than with the version he originally created it. I can find it and raise an issue.

Of course, no one forces that guy on Reddit to use the scene referred workflow or tools.

When I say obviously wrong information I was referring to the fact that some comments were saying that dt is going nowhere. A stupid bashing made by stupid people.


Regrettably, reddit is a terrible platform for discussions. Things scroll down so quickly that it’s usually the first answers that get the most upvotes, not the best. Good answers are often given, but without the votes, they are buried and forgotten.

I have therefore given up on participating in reddit for the most part. It’s just not worth the effort. It’s sad, really, because behind each of these questions is a real human being with a genuine need for help.

In this case, they could just keep using their favorite modules. No need to change to the “new” filmic if they don’t want to. But asking on reddit, they’re bound to get bad answers.


What really impresses me about DT is the pace of development and the dedication of the developers. For me I wouldn’t even care if the xmp breaks between versions because with each new version DT’s tools improve and my DT skills to use the tools improve. So I am happy to just start the edit again if I want to revisit the image. Otherwise I have saved my edit as an exported image so I don’t need to edit it again.

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not breaking old edits matters alot. imagine you are in a timecrunch and someone says “the photo you did a year ago. can you quickly do this touchup and then export it again?” and you notice all your edits are broken. This might annoy you as a hobbyist already. Now imagine if this is part of your job and earning money.


Fair call. I guess this is why the developers are so careful to minimize the risk of broken edits. For me, not so important, but I can see what you mean for other users.

Then that user should seek help and provide specifics. The OP on the thread is just complaining and hasn’t said anything remotely close to specifics.

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It may not be common practice, but any time you “finish” processing an image you should be archiving a full-res TIFF version IMO. Touch that up.

And for the amateurs that feel inspired to go back and reinterpret old images with new tools, why would you want to start from where you finished off last time anyway?


No they should not be required to do that. Non destructive editing should always be backwards compatible. And sometimes just tweaking a param in a module to achieve the desired output is way faster to try to do the same adjustment in an exported tiff.

Because if they want to try a new workflow there is a way to reset the history stack and then start fresh. You know what doesn’t have a way if you ignore backwards compatibility? “oh please get me back my last working edit i only need to tweak a minor thing” Imagine it was not just a simple edit with some whitebalance/filmic. Maybe the photo had local adjustments and all that. Would you really want to redo a complex edit just because the program forgot backwards compat?

Trust me you will loose users quickly if you ignore backwards compatibility. Especially in a commercial setting. People loose a deal once or twice and then the program gets replaced.


Some subreddits are fun and have a really nice community, like some of the music ones, but the Darktable subreddit attracts the dark side of Reddit where it’s used to stir up an angry mob. Whenever Ansel is mentioned, there are always a bunch of users who can’t wait to bash Darktable and rally around Ansel. I’m all for people saying “try software x and see if you like it”, but many users go out of their way to discourage people from using something they have decided not to use. I really hate this mentality.

That subreddit is 90% a helpdesk for troubleshooting, but the users just want a quick fix without the effort needed to submit a proper bug report.

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Yes, this exactly. They don’t want to use any of the resources to help themselves, they’d rather ask and let someone else do the legwork to help them.

I’ve had plenty of disagreements with the darktable team in the past, especially AP, but I know for a fact that the things this guy is claiming the developers are doing has no basis in fact.

He claims he has a pile of broken edits, but won’t provide even a single raw+XMP pair, won’t provide links to bug reports where developers supposedly told him to pound sand… And go figure, he gets upvoted while people who say “Where is your evidence?” get downvoted.


I recently updated to 4.6.1, and can not see any problems with previous edits from files processed over a 5 year period. I’ve searched bug reports on github, not found anything pertinent to this Reddit guys issue.

I can still go back and edit old files without problem, or duplicate and change edits. I usually do re-edits for very specific needs, and it isn’t a frequent activity. I export my processed images as I edit, and usually that’s that.

I do agree that for images of great importance, exporting to a high bit tiff in a large color space is a good idea, and is something I’ve done since my days in LR and PS.

Thanks for the many comments in this thread. And Kudos to the darktable dev’s for the continuing work on this great project.

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Just my experience but from what I’ve seen reddit is generally enough of a dumpster fire for me to avoid by default. It’s not worth my time picking through the litter…

According to one commenter on that thread “pixls is not worth it” and “the lack of free speech”… Anyway lol yes.


Yes, free to insult anyone on reddit


Darktable puts a lot of effort in backward compatibility of edits.
That’s why modules get depreciated, but are still available.
That’s why filmic has 7 versions selectable.
That’s why there is a bunch of regression testing in the code base.
That’s why in PRs you get quite often a remark ‘this breaks bc’ and then you have to find a solution as dev.

Maybe this was trying different version of the master/main build, but that’s a given that you run into things like this then.

If you have an edit, opening it up again (even versions later) should open it up the same. If not, open a bug report.

And as a general rule of the modern internet: reddit is for whining , not for seeking solutions or asking questions. Sad but true.