How to compare the content of two files

Open discussion about WinMerge.

How to compare the content of two files

Postby cjstgreen » Wed Apr 08, 2020 9:15 am

I'm an application administrator for an application named Teamcenter. I just upgraded to a new patch of the application. Prior to upgrading, I exported all preferences and then after upgrading, I exported all preferences. Now I am comparing the two exports to see what has changed, what is new, etc. The comparison view has approximately 70,000 lines.
When I'm going through the comparison, WinMerge seems to be comparing the content of each file, line-by-line and showing differences. So at first glance, when I look in the left side view, a preference name is shown and has highlighting indicating the differences to the right side. However, when I look in the right side view, the preference name is different.
For example, in the left side view, there is a preference named “Mail_server_name” that is listed on line number 10663, but on the right side it does not show up until line number 11471. At first glance, you might think that the preference is being replaced by a completely different preference.
How can I be guaranteed that identical preference names are being compared rather than comparing line-by-line? Is that possible?
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Re: How to compare the content of two files

Postby christianlist » Sat Apr 18, 2020 3:38 am

Sounds like you may be looking for the IgnoreLeadingLineNumbers prediffer. See ... _available
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Re: How to compare the content of two files

Postby jellysheep » Sun Apr 19, 2020 7:15 pm

So glad somebody asked this question as I have recently encountered this issue myself. I'm trying to compare two files where, in the more recent file, the order of paragraphs have been changed from the start, so that everything is now showing as being different or changed even if a lot of it is still present but further down in the text!
I was looking for some way to check both documents for similar content regardless of line number, like looking for same sentence fragments or word couplings throughout the documents, no matter where they are, so that I can at least see if content still exists or has changed in any way.

I'm completely new to this, so I don't know what I'm doing with plug-ins and system registry and whatnot. I hunted online for a place to download the dll that was mentioned in the reply, and I found dll4free dot com. According to that site, I need to copy the dll into the MergePlugins folder as well as the Windows>System32 folder and then "register dll file using Microsoft Regsvr". I followed the steps to the cmd command line part. I got errors when trying to do that. So I found a different site (originaldll dot com) that said all OS 64-bit users should also install the dll to the SysWOW64 folder as well. I did this too. Still getting error pop-ups.

Are the registry steps necessary? Or is the WinMerge software itself supposed to automatically use the plug-in once it is present in the MergePlugins folder? Just wondering how this is supposed to all work and how I would know what to do as I read it doesn't run the comparison within the WinMerge panes. So where does it all take place?
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