xxdiff is a graphical file and directories comparator and merge tool.
xxdiff doesn’t itself compute the differences between files, it just displays them graphically (the rationale behind this is that you can use different tools to compute the actual diffs (for example using Rational ClearCase’s cleardiff, which gives more sensible results than GNU diff in certain cases), there is a relatively standard format for difference output (POSIX diff), so it is easy and efficient to parse diff output from different programs, under the UNIX dataflow paradigm, it is common for graphical tools to be built on top of text tools.
xxdiff comes with a bunch of wrapper Python scripts that invoke xxdiff in creative ways.
- Comparing two files, three files, or two directories (shallow and recursive).
- Horizontal diffs highlighting.
- Files can be merged interactively and resulting output visualized and saved.
- Has features to assist in performing merge reviews/policing;
- Can unmerge CVS conflicts in automatically merged file and display them as two files, to help resolve conflicts.
- Uses external diff program to compute differences: works with GNU diff, SGI diff and ClearCase’s cleardiff, and any other diff whose output is similar to those.
- Fully customizable with a resource file.
- Look-and-feel similar to Rudy Wortel’s/SGI xdiff, it is desktop agnostic.
- Features and output that ease integration with scripts.
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