You can accomplish the same thing by adding a layermask to the layer,  
and initialize the layermask using the "Transfer Layer's Alpha  
Channel". Subsequently hiding, editing, disabling, and/or removing the  
layermask permits full control of whether the layer's RGB values are  
shown.


Quoting "Alchemie foto\grafiche" <fotocom...@yahoo.it>:

>
> May be very useful for who does photo-montages a option to   
> "resurrect" erased or "cleared pixels,  to correct badly cropped   
> details that often are noticed only to late for a UNDO
>
> May sound something magic but is trivial to implement, and since is   
> not based on UNDO may be applied also on already closed images, or   
> even to pre-cut images as png "renders" found on the Web.
>
> Limit is that will work only with layers or images with alpha   
> channel..in this case NOT a painful limit since obviously cuts for   
> photomontages are all saved without stripping the alpha
>
> THERE IS ALREADY  a Filter, more exactly a MathMAp code that may do   
> on all the layer ,or even on selected part of the layer,
>
>  (see here;
> http://groups.google.com/group/mathmap/browse_thread/thread/e798e80f753b3d1f?hl=en
>   message number   
> 2)
>
>  but would be a useful option for the eraser, and maybe even for   
> other brush tools
>
> Concept, is trivial :
> the eraser (or a brush tool) if used with "resurrect Erased/cleared"  
>  option (if used at 100% opacity ) will modify where applied only  
> the  A of RGBA without changing other RGB data, and that will  
> "resurrect"  deleted pixel since their color info are still there,  
> only their  opacity is changed
>
>
> Should be not hard to implement
>
> About the obvious objection:
> "As Gimp has no reason to modify color info of invisible pixels,
> Gimp filters and tools have no reason to preserve them "
>
> That is true but in practice, when working with photomontages ,   
> clear or erase is very often the last operation done before saving ,  
>  so most of the times will work,more is intuitive guess when it may   
> not work, or not perfectly
> (= if filter or tool where applied also to the transparent pixels   
> after erasing or clearing )
>
>
> And from a similar, apparently  magic feature (as far i know not   
> present in other image editors)can't be expected 100% success, a big  
>  success may be that work very often...and will look as magic to  
> many  users
>
> magic and useful, in my opinion


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