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Viewing Content History

An overview on how to view the version history of an item, compare versions, preview previous versions and revert to previous versions.

Creating a new version

Plone includes a versioning feature. By default, the following content types have versioning enabled:

  • Pages
  • News Items
  • Events
  • Links
  • Files

Note that all other content types do track workflow history.

Tracking the version history of Files is unique to other content types. Files are opaque to Plone's version history, so the only thing that the history will show is that the file has been replaced.  You won't get line-by-line history like you do on HTML body fields. However, each version of a file can be downloaded even after the file is replaced (see the Viewing and reverting to previous versions section of this tutorial).  It is recommended that you use the Change Note field to provide detail regarding changes you have made to your files.

The following tutorial details how to track the version history of content types including files by using the Change note field and the Revision preview feature.

Content items can be configured to have versioning enabled/disabled through the Site Setup → Plone Configuration panel under "Types".

When editing an item, you may use the change note field at the bottom; the change note will be stored in the item's version history. If the change note is left blank, Plone includes a default note: "Initial Revision".

A new version is created every time the item is saved. Versioning keeps track of all kinds of edits: content, metadata, settings, etc.

Viewing the version history

Once an item as been saved, you can use the History tab to access the items history.

Simply click it to show the items History:

The most recent version is listed first. The History table provides the following information:

  • The revision number
  • Which user performed the revision
  • What date and time the edit occurred
  • Comments
  • Actions for comparing revisions

Comparing versions

From the History table, you can compare any previous version with the current version or any other version with the version just before it.

To compare any previous version with the one just before it, click the Compare to previous revision link located in the Actions column of the history table.

By clicking this link, you'll see a screen like this one where you can see the differences between the two versions:

In this example, text with a (-) next to it is text which has been deleted and text with a (+) next to it is text which has been added to the newer version.

You may also compare any previous version to the current version by clicking the Compare to current revision link, found in the Actions column of the history table.

You can toggle between visual or code views of the differences between versions by clicking the Body Text link.

The following is an example of the code differences:

Viewing and reverting to previous versions

You can preview any previous version of an item by clicking the preview link in the Revision column of the history table.

Version history preview

You can download previous versions of a file by clicking the Click here to get the file link.

Download a file from the history preview screen.

To revert back to a previous version, click on the Revert to this revision button in the Actions column of the history table.

Revert to revision of an item.

Document Actions