There are just a few general criteria on spaceability. This survey paper is the history of one of the first ones. Let I1 and I2 be arbitrary operator ideals and E and F be Banach spaces. The spaceability of the set of operators I1(E, F)\ I2(E, F) is studied. Before stating the criterium, the paper summarizes the main results about lineability and spaceability of differences between particular operator ideals obtained in recent years. They are the seed of the ideas contained in the general criterium.