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metrics diff

Compare metrics between two commits in the DVC repository, or between a commit and the workspace.


usage: dvc metrics diff [-h] [-q | -v]
                        [--targets [<paths> [<paths> ...]]] [-R]
                        [--all] [--show-json] [--show-md] [--no-path]
                        [--old] [--precision <n>]
                        [a_rev] [b_rev]

positional arguments:
  a_rev                 Old Git commit to compare (defaults to HEAD)
  b_rev                 New Git commit to compare (defaults to the
                        current workspace)


This command provides a quick way to compare metrics among experiments in the repository history. All metrics defined in dvc.yaml are used by default. The differences shown by this command include the new value, and numeric difference (delta) from the previous value of metrics (rounded to 5 digits precision).

a_rev and b_rev are Git commit hashes, tag, or branch names. If none are specified, dvc metrics diff compares metrics currently present in the workspace (uncommitted changes) with the latest committed versions (required). A single specified revision results in comparing the workspace and that version.

Note that unlike dvc diff, this command doesn't always need DVC files to find metrics files (see --targets option). For that reason, it doesn't require an existing DVC project to run in. It can work in any Git repo.

Another way to display metrics is the dvc metrics show command, which just lists all the current metrics, without comparisons.


  • --targets <paths> - specific metrics files to compare. It accepts paths to any valid metrics file, regardless of whether dvc.yaml is currently tracking any metrics in them. Using -R, directories to search metrics files in can also be given.

    When specifying arguments for --targets before revisions, you should use -- after this option's arguments (POSIX terminals), e.g.:

    $ dvc metrics diff --targets t1.json t2.yaml -- HEAD v1
  • -R, --recursive - determines the metrics files to use by searching each target directory and its subdirectories for DVC-tracked files to inspect. If there are no directories among the targets, this option is ignored.
  • --all - list all metrics, even those without changes.
  • --show-json - prints the command's output in easily parsable JSON format, instead of a human-readable table.
  • --show-md - prints the command's output in Markdown table format.
  • --old - show old metric value in addition to the new value.
  • --no-path - don't show metric path in the result table. This option is useful when only one metrics file is in use or there is no intersection between the metric names.
  • --precision <n> - round metrics to n digits precision after the decimal point. Rounds to 5 digits by default.
  • -h, --help - prints the usage/help message, and exit.
  • -q, --quiet - do not write anything to standard output. Exit with 0 if no problems arise, otherwise 1.
  • -v, --verbose - displays detailed tracing information.


Start by creating a metrics file and commit it (see the -M option of dvc run for more details):

$ dvc run -n eval -M metrics.json \
          'echo {"AUC": 0.9643, "TP": 527} > metrics.json'

$ cat metrics.json
{"AUC": 0.9643, "TP": 527}

$ git add dvc.* metrics.json
$ git commit -m "Add metrics file"

Now let's simulate a change in our AUC metric:

$ echo '{"AUC":0.9671, "TP":531}' > metrics.json

$ git diff
-{"AUC":0.9643, "TP":527}
+{"AUC":0.9671, "TP":531}

To see the change, let's run dvc metrics diff. This compares our current workspace (including uncommitted local changes) metrics to what we had in the previous commit:

$ dvc metrics diff
Path          Metric    Value    Change
metrics.json  AUC       0.9671   0.0028
metrics.json  TP        531      4

Example: compare metrics among specific versions

Metrics files committed with Git can be compared by referencing the commits (any two revisions):

$ dvc metrics diff --targets metrics.json -- HEAD c7bef55
Path       Metric    Value    Change
eval.json  ACU       0.66729  0.01614
eval.json  TP        516      -12

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