rdiff - Man Page

compute and apply signature-based file differences


rdiff [options] signature old-file signature-file

rdiff [options] delta signature-file new-file delta-file

rdiff [options] patch old-file delta-file new-file


You can use rdiff to update files, much like rsync does. However, unlike rsync, rdiff puts you in control.  There are three steps to updating a file: signature, delta, and patch. Use the signature subcommand to generate a small signature-file from the old-file. Use the delta subcommand to generate a small delta-file from the signature-file to the new-file. Use the patch subcommand to apply the delta-file to the old-file to regenerate the new-file.


In every case where a filename must be specified, - may be used instead to mean either standard input or standard output as appropriate.  Be aware that if you do this, you'll need to terminate your options with -- or rdiff will think you are passing it an empty option.

Return Value

0 for successful completion, 1 for environmental problems (file not found, invalid options, IO error, etc), 2 for a corrupt file and 3 for an internal error or unhandled situation in librsync or rdiff.

See Also



Martin Pool <mbp@sourcefrog.net>

The original rsync algorithm was discovered by Andrew Tridgell.

rdiff development has been supported by Linuxcare, Inc and VA Linux Systems.

Referenced By

duplicity(1), librsync(3), rdiff-backup(1), rdiff-backup-old(1).