Code Compare is a free tool designed to compare
and merge differing files and folders. Code Compare integrates with all popular
source control systems: TFS, SVN, Git, Mercurial, and Perforce. Code Compare is
shipped both as a standalone file diff tool and a Visual Studio extension.
Code Compare Pro edition of the tool is specially adapted for comparing
source code files. It locates changes in code with regard to its structure. Code
Compare Pro features 3-way file merge tool that allows resolving version control
Source code comparison has just become a child's play! Code Compare
introduces the concept of Code Orientation, ultimately making it stand out from
competitive file diff software. The concept implies syntax highlighting as well
as unique structure and lexical comparison algorithms.
The file compare tool takes into account language specifics, which
allows comparing sources in several of the most popular programming languages as
Code Compare recognizes language syntax elements and highlights them in different
colors, which makes visual file compare and merge considerably easier.
This is complemented with the Brace Matching feature that highlights
the beginning and ending of a code block. Ultimately, you are able to experience
an incomparably convenient code reading for comprehensive file comparison.
The concept of Code Orientation stands on several pillars, Structure Comparison
being one of them. This method allows to compare source code by its signature,
instead of the location only. Code Compare supports Structure Comparison for several
making it a flexible tool for source code comparison.
Next key point in the code orientation concept is Lexical Comparison. This algorithm
is triggered when you choose Symbol By Symbol file compare mode. It detects
lexemes from the supported languages and compares them word by word.
One other element of source-oriented file compare is Difference Explorer. This advanced
option (available in Code Compare Pro only) displays changes in class structure
between revisions. It displays a structure tree of the compared
source files and marks changes with colors. This way you can visually review and
navigate changes in the code.
From now on, even if you don't use a version control system, the extensive functionality
of Code Compare will come in handy when you need to compare and merge entire
folders. This diff tool is useful for detecting changes in different
versions of source code or web pages. Advanced integration capabilities of this
file comparison tool couldn't miss Windows Explorer. All you have to do to compare
the contents of two folders is select them and choose the corresponding option from
the context menu.
The folder comparison feature uses color highlighting to mark differences. You can
diff and merge folders with the help of the Copy to Left and Copy
to Right items of the context menu. If you want to compare a file from one folder
with the corresponding file from another folder, just double-click the file or select
it and press ENTER.
The resulting comparison is fairly quick, yet it can be further enhanced through
an additional option to skip files with equal size and timestamp.
Another helpful option is file and folder filtering. For instance,
it allows you to ignore binary files and subversion folders.
Comparison of individual files can be invoked by double-clicking or using the Windows
Explorer menu, integrated in the context menu of files and folders. Finally, you
can merge separate files one-by-one or entire folders from one pane to the other.
Three-way file compare and merge tool is one of the distinctive
features of Code Compare. This function uses all the features native to two-way
file comparison processing three files at once. The main goal is comparing one base
file to its two editions. Highly-customizable GUI and one-click
operation make three-way merge an ultimately convenient solution for team projects.
With this feature, the content of a file placed on the center pane is simultaneously
compared to that of the left and the right pane-placed files. You can open any three
files using the Browse button as well as the Windows Explorer context menu or drag
Also, this feature is most commonly used to solve conflicts in version control systems.
Three-way file diff and merge tool allows you to merge two derived
files to a base file or to a result file.
As one of its newest additions, Code Compare GUI features a special toolbar for
working with pane layout. Using these panes you can quickly switch between horizontal
or vertical layout as well as hide any of the displayed panes,
leaving only those necessary for you.
Looking to make source file compare and merge even more effective, we've added unique
Visual Studio integration functionality to Code Compare. The true
freedom of performing all the development and merging operations within one environment
at the same time is finally at your hands. With the file compare tool integrated,
Visual Studio receives a special Code Compare menu and toolbar that contain every
function you needed for file comparison and 3-way merge.
While distributed as a standalone file comparison tool, Code Compare can also be
smoothly integrated into different software environments, e.g. Windows Explorer,
version control systems, and most notably — Microsoft Visual Studio
integrated development environment.
With Code Compare integrated into Visual Studio 2010 or 2012
you receive numerous benefits in terms of file comparison and merging.
For instance, you can view and compare the code directly in the native Visual Studio
code editor, using all of its functionality, including keyboard shortcuts, code
formatting and syntax validation the way you are used to. As a part of its advanced
Visual Studio integration capabilities, Code Compare uses native Visual Studio colors
to highlight syntax. Also, in this case Code Navigation and Intellisense
function in the context of currently open solution.
Comparing the project structure and merging its elements can now be performed using
the solution explorer menu, containing a Code Compare item.
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