WinMerge is a free file comparison utility similar to windiff that lets you compare and merge similar files and folders.
It’s probably happened to you many times before: you and a co-worker are working on the same document at the same time. You each make different changes to the file and save your own respective copies of it on each of your hard drives. Suddenly, your boss says he needs the file in his inbox right away. How do you find the differences between your two versions and merge them into one finished product? Get your boss a cup of coffee and download WinMerge. With WinMerge, you can open both files at once, and compare them line by line. WinMerge clearly shows you the differences in each line of text in both files, so that you can choose which version to keep, and easily merge the two files into one harmonious document that your boss will love.
WinMerge’s simple interface uses color coding to display differences between files. Lines that are different display in gold, and each different word within each gold line is highlighted to show the specific differences. Identical lines have no background color. This makes it easy to see exactly what is different within each file. You can also compare two folders, and their subfolders. WinMerge shows you whether two files with the same name are different, and which files are unique to each folder. You can then easily open similar files to compare them by line. You can even see when each file was updated, so you can choose to keep the most recent copy.
Tips for New Users
While WinMerge is simple compared to other differencing and merging tools, it can still seem confusing at first. It’s best to review the user manual before you begin comparing files and folders. You can quickly open the user manual by pressing the F1 key, or selecting “WinMerge Help” from the “Help” menu.
Areas of Improvement
WinMerge’s simple interface is one reason why it compares folders faster than other differencing and merging tools, but its many lines of text and tiny icons may confuse new users. A more graphical interface would be preferable, with larger icons which clearly show which files are different.
WinMerge is a free file compare utility that solves the problem of how to compare and merge files and folders. It quickly scans files by line, instead of by word or character, then uses color coding to clearly show which lines are different. It can search folders and subfolders for differences in similar files, and show which ones are the most recent. WinMerge is faster and more simplified than other, pricier file comparison tools. So the next time you and your co-worker edit the same document at the same time, you can keep your boss happy by quickly comparing and merging them with WinMerge.
Previous File Versions
Similar: windiff, file compare, utility, diff tool, compare files, windows diff, text compare, win merge
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