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Can I find out in which release a function was introduced?

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Sometimes I get error messages saying stuff like:
Undefined function 'savefig' for input arguments of type 'char'
Undefined function or variable 'parfeval'
How can I know in which release a function became available? I know this page contains release notes, but it's quite cumbersome to find when a specific function was released. (I know I need the Parallel Computing Toolbox for parfeval)
Note that this question is not about those two specific functions, but any and all functions that have been introduced later than say R2007a.

Accepted Answer

Michal on 5 Jun 2019
In search of an answer to this question I landed here. But after some time I found a solution without any additional toolboxes.
The version in which the function was introduced is listed at the bottom of every function documentation. Right above the rating stars, between two bars.
I know this is an old thread but maybe someone else finds this information useful.

More Answers (1)

Reza Ahmadzadeh
Reza Ahmadzadeh on 13 Dec 2015
I wrote a function that can give you the version a function was released. You can find it here. Try it.
Steven Lord
Steven Lord on 25 May 2018
Searching the online documentation found only two hits. One is this Answers post and the other is a submission on the MATLAB Central File Exchange. So it doesn't appear to be part of any MathWorks product.
DGM on 1 Dec 2022
Edited: DGM on 1 Dec 2022
Unless Reza updates, that version of when() no longer works.
The version I wrote here currently works, and it offers more functionality than the original. It allows lookup of functions which are not in the current installation. It can also find functions/methods whose webdocs URL cannot be naively guessed.
I still rarely find the release notes to be a practical answer. The web RN only go back a few versions, which makes lookup of legacy version info (the typical reason why you'd be looking for version info) completely pointless. PDF release notes exist, but in order to be useful, all the stars need to align:
  • You need to know that the PDF release notes even exist.
  • You need to know that the release notes for each toolbox are separate
  • You need to know where they are, because they're not where you'd expect.
  • The RN need to go back far enough to cover the version in question.
  • The RN need to actually mention the detail you're looking for.
So that's the value. To put the cost in perspective, I timed how long it took me to look up the release version for imgaussfilt().
% 2.5s using when()
% when imgaussfilt
% 53s to load webdocs page and scroll to bottom
% websearch "matlab $functionname"
% load docs page and scroll
% 6m40s to find mention in release notes (natural browsing)
% start from documentation home
% go to release notes -> image processing toolbox (web release notes)
% PDF RN aren't anywhere to be found; where are they?
% go to IPT home -> release notes (goes back to useless web RN)
% go to IPT home -> PDF documentation -> release notes
% wait for download
% open and search
% 3m45s to do the same using the slow documentation search page instead
% 2m30s to do the same using a web search instead
Bear in mind that I already knew:
  • which toolbox it was in
  • that it's not in the web RN for IPT, so I didn't waste time searching there
  • I knew that PDF RN existed and that they wouldn't be in the obvious place
Granted, when() is an inelegant horror that has to rely on scraping web pages and doesn't always work either -- but least it's quick. The PDF release notes are valuable, but their value lies in that you can download them once and then keep them offline. That also means that you can often find older copies off-site that go back further than the current ones do. I don't think that spending an hour dredging the web to build a personal library of PDF documentation is convenient on average.
Building a comprehensive and convenient tool to get addition/deletion info for functions/methods is really something that only TMW can do. That said, I don't know that there's demand for such a thing beyond a handful of people who care about supporting versions that are older than a banana.

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