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Chetan Atrawalkar
Chetan Atrawalkar

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Best file comparison tools for linux.

Many new tools for comparing files have emerged in Linux over the years, and in this post, we'll examine best and most useful tools for doing that.

  • File comparison compares the contents of computer files, finding their common contents and their differences. When you compare two computer files on Linux, the difference between their contents is called a diff.

There are several file comparison tools that you can use on Linux, and in this review, we shall look at some of the best terminal based and GUI diff tools you can take advantage of while writing code or other text files.

👉 Let's go and explore this tools.

1️⃣ Kompare

  • Kompare is a diff GUI wrapper that allows users to view differences between files and also merge them.

  • Some of its features include:

  1. Supports multiple diff formats
  2. Supports comparison of directories
  3. Supports reading diff files
  4. Customizable interface
  5. Creating and applying patches to source files

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📌Homepage Link:

2️⃣ Vimdiff

  • Vimdiff works in an advanced manner in comparison to diff utility. It enables a user to edit up to four versions of a file while showing their differences. When you run it, Vimdiff opens two or three or four files using vim text editor.
  • Vimdiff Edit Multiple Files for Differences.

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📌Homepage Link:

3️⃣ Diffuse – GUI Diff Tool

  • Diffuse is another popular, free, small and simple GUI diff and merge tool that you can use on Linux. Written in Python, It offers two major functionalities, that is: file comparison and version control, allowing file editing, merging of files and also output the difference between files.

  • You can view a comparison summary, select lines of text in files using a mouse pointer, match lines in adjacent files and edit different file. Other features include:

  1. Syntax highlighting
  2. Keyboard shortcuts for easy navigation
  3. Supports unlimited undo
  4. Unicode support
  5. Supports Git, CVS, Darcs, Mercurial, RCS, Subversion, SVK and Monotone

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📌Homepage Link:

4️⃣ DiffMerge

  • DiffMerge is a cross-platform GUI application for comparing and merging files. It has two functionality engines, the Diff engine which shows the difference between two files, which supports intra-line highlighting and editing and a Merge engine which outputs the changed lines between three files.

  • It has got the following features:

  1. Supports directory comparison
  2. File browser integration
  3. Highly configurable

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📌Homepage Link:

5️⃣ Meld – Diff Tool

  • Meld is a lightweight GUI diff and merge tool. It enables users to compare files, directories plus version controlled programs. Built specifically for developers, it comes with the following features:
  1. Two-way and three-way comparison of files and directories
  2. Update of file comparison as a users types more words
  3. Makes merges easier using auto-merge mode and actions on changed blocks
  4. Easy comparisons using visualizations
  5. Supports Git, Mercurial, Subversion, Bazaar plus many more

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📌Homepage Link:

6️⃣ KDiff3 – – Diff and Merge Tool

  • KDiff3 is yet another cool, cross-platform diff and merge tool made from KDevelop. It works on all Unix-like platforms including Linux and Mac OS X, Windows.

It can compare or merge two to three files or directories and has the following notable features:

  1. Indicates differences line by line and character by character
  2. Supports auto-merge
  3. In-built editor to deal with merge-conflicts
  4. Supports Unicode, UTF-8 and many other codecs
  5. Allows printing of differences
  6. Windows explorer integration support
  7. Also supports auto-detection via byte-order-mark “BOM”
  8. Supports manual alignment of lines
  9. Intuitive GUI and many more

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📌Homepage Link:

7️⃣ TkDiff

  • TkDiff is also a cross-platform, easy-to-use GUI wrapper for the Unix diff tool. It provides a side-by-side view of the differences between two input files. It can run on Linux, Windows and Mac OS X.

  • Additionally, it has some other exciting features including diff bookmarks, a graphical map of differences for easy and quick navigation plus many more.

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📌Homepage Link:

This is some of the best file and directory comparator and merge tools, you probably want to try out some of them. These may not be the only diff tools available you can find on Linux, but they are known to offer some the best features.

🙏 Please share your valuable feedback in comment section which is yours favourite and mostly used diff tool and which tool you used in daily basis.

Thanks For Reading.

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Top comments (2)

roneo profile image

I'm using Meld as 'git mergetool' to solve merge conflitcs, it's simply awesome!

chetan_atrawalkar profile image
Chetan Atrawalkar

Wow and thank you 💗

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