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Meld alternative for MacOS

realvorl profile image Viorel PETCU ・2 min read

But Why?

I recently "had to" switch from PC to a Mac because of the lack of support from Microsoft for their collaboration software, I mean Office 365, Skype for Business and of course Microsoft Teams.

Now, while there are some "hacky" ways to workaround these "limitations" when having a daily driver that is a PC running Linux, the company policies do not allow for such things.

That is why I opted to replace my beloved PC with a Mac, I figured that the Unix DNA of Mac OS would ensure that enough of my Linux workflow would be able to survive the transition.

😥 Sigh 😥

What now ?

It's not that bad, I was able to reach my primary goal: run the required apps from Microsoft native and take advantage of the Mac Book Pros hardware, but I am now faced with a new problem: I have to find replacements for the software I got accustomed to on my Linux OS and environment.

The first, I think, good solution I found was a replacement for the awesome tool that is MELD because at the time of writing this, the Mac OS port is not yet finished and building from source is not something I want to do as a noob

Snapshot from meldmerge.org

So I am going to use the Community Edition of the IntelliJ IDE, it provides a lot of stuff I use daily, and am glad it offers a great diff tool that can handle files and folders.

Why I like it.

The coolest feature that Jet Brains builds into all its products is the OMNI-search or Global Search, this makes it easy to find stuff that is indexed and then select the candidates I want to compare:

tap SHIFT twice
type the filename
select file 1
repeat and select file 2
hit ⌘ + D once you have them

CTRL-D or CMD-D

What else ?

Of course It is much more useful than just for melding stuff, here are the other things it brings out of the box (and also what it doesn't):

Feature Community Edition
License Open-source, Apache 2.0
Java, Kotlin, Groovy, Scala
Android
Maven, Gradle, SBT
Git, SVN, Mercurial
Perforce
JavaScript, TypeScript
Java EE, Spring, Play, Grails, Others ...
Database Tools, SQL
Detecting Duplicates

But this does not mean it is limited to these, the plugin system that powers the IDE is a treasure trove of useful stuff you can explore, stuff like:

markdown navigator

python support

. . .

git toolbox

Conclusion

This is a workaround I will, at some point, build MELD and add it to my toolbox. While I can get away with diff and diff3 on the terminal, I do like the assistance that I get in merging when using a GUI, and IntelliJ is simply not intended to be used as a command line tool.

Take care and compare,

Vio.

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realvorl profile

Viorel PETCU

@realvorl

FOSS | Sustainable energy | Environmental protection

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