GtkSourceView 4 -> 5 Migration Guide

GTK dependency

GtkSourceView 5 depends on GTK 4.

GtkSourceGutterRenderer is a GtkWidget

In GtkSourceView 5, the GtkSourceGutterRenderer has become a widget. This allows more flexibility by implementations to handle input as well as cache snapshot information for faster rendering.


Previously, GtkSourceView would spend a lot of time while scrolling just for rendering the gutter. This was because it had to calculate much line information on every frame (roughly 60 frames per second) and multiple times within that frame.

In GtkSourceView 5, a GtkSourceGutterLines structure has been added to the API which allows for collecting that information and re-using by each gutter renderer, thus reducing overhead greatly.

GtkSourceGutterRenderer implementations should use this to store information about each line and then recall it when snapshotting the given line.


GtkSourceView 5 added support for snippets. This functionality did not exist within previous versions of GtkSourceView.

The implementation contains a snippet language embedded within XML files as well as a completion provider. You may also “push” snippets onto a GtkSourceView manually by creating GtkSourceSnippetChunk and associating them with a GtkSourceSnippet. Many completion providers may find this more convenient to allow users to move through focus positions.


GtkSourceView 5 changed how completion providers are implemented. Doing so has allowed for much reduction in overhead when generating results and presenting them to the user. Additionally, it has improved Wayland support for placing completion results.

GtkSourceCompletionProposal no longer requires any implementation except to implement the interface symbolically. That can be done using G_IMPLEMENT_INTERFACE(GTK_SOURCE_TYPE_COMPLETION_PROPOSAL,NULL). This allowed all of the implementation details to be placed in GtkSourceCompletionProvider.

GtkSourceCompletionCell is a new display widget that is used in multiple places as a generic container for information about completion proposals.

GtkSourceCompletionProviders are now expected to asynchronously provide a GListModel of GtkSourceCompletionProposal instead of a GList. Refiltering of results can be provided using the refilter method and should be updated while the user types further. If a new model must be generated, use gtk_source_completion_context_set_proposals_for_provider().

Style Schemes

Since 5.2, GtkSourceView will synthesize an appropriate background color for current-line-number if current-line-number’s background is not specified. Style schemes which have not already set current-line-number should be updated and use #rgba(0,0,0,0) to match the previous behavior.