Review Github PR with a web-based editor

⋅ 3 min read ⋅ Github Development

Table of Contents

If you prefer to review pull requests with an editor but hate the clone or checkout process, you can enjoy the review process without the hassle with new github.dev web-based editor.

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What is Pull requests (PR)

Pull requests[1] is an excellent opportunity for team members to understand the code changes and learn from each other. You can review the code through the web interface, but I find it easier to navigate and review it in IDE or text editor.

In the past, I have to clone the project locally and review it on my machine, which is quite cumbersome. But I don't have to do that anymore with the new Github feature, The github.dev web-based editor.

Review PR on the web-based editor

To review Github PR right on the web-based editor, you can do either of the following ways:

  • Replace the hostname from github.com/ to github.dev/. For example, if your PR URL is https://github.com/sarunw/sarunw-blog/pull/3, you can open the web-based editor with this URL https://github.dev/sarunw/sarunw-blog/pull/3.
  • Press . (dot) while you are on any pull request URL. This will automatically replace the hostname from https://github.com/ to https://github.dev/ for you.

Here is an example of using the . key to open a PR in the web-based editor.

Press
Press "." to open any PR in the web-based editor.

You can do many things with this web-based editor. I can't cover everything here, but I will show you some everyday tasks.

Review all files changed

Under the "Github Pull Request" tab, you can easily see all modified/added/deleted files for that pull request.

All changes in a pull request will show up in the
All changes in a pull request will show up in the "Github pull request" tab.

Review changes for each commit

If your team usually group changes into an easy-to-digest commit, you might want to review it by commit.
You can see the changes for each commit by expanding the "Commits" section. You will see commit messages along with related file changes.

Review changes for each commit.
Review changes for each commit.

Mark view as viewed

Click on the checkmark icon next to the file name to mark a file as viewed.

Mask a file as viewed by clicking on the checkmark icon.
Mask a file as viewed by clicking on the checkmark icon.

This will reflect on the web interface like this.

Mark file as viewed on Github.com
Mark file as viewed on Github.com

Inline comment

You can comment on each line by clicking on any line of code, which will open up a comment form where you can put the comment in.

Inline comment form.
Inline comment form.

Once commented, the comment will show up on that line.

Inline comment will show up right next to a code.
Inline comment will show up right next to a code.

Comment on a PR

You can put the comment on the PR by writing in the text field located at the bottom left of the screen.

Comment on a PR.
Comment on a PR.

A PR comment and inline comments will show up on the web interface like this.

A PR comment and inline comments on github.com
A PR comment and inline comments on github.com

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Conclusion

Personally, I prefer to review PR on editor over traditional Github web style. Being able to navigate and jump from file to file makes it easier for me to locate the changes and better understand what might be affected by the changes.

Pull requests can be any size, and some changes might be better to check out and run for yourself, but for those that don't require that, I find this new web-based editor really helps.


  1. https://docs.github.com/en/pull-requests/collaborating-with-pull-requests/proposing-changes-to-your-work-with-pull-requests/about-pull-requests ↩︎


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