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Is there a utility to compare folders visually?

60237 Views 77 Replies Latest reply: Mar 24, 2014 7:54 AM by pteja RSS
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murrayE Level 1 Level 1 (40 points)
Currently Being Moderated
Apr 6, 2012 5:36 PM

Is there some Lion-compatible Finder-like utility that will do the following?

 

  1. Display the list of files from two different folders, in parallel columns.
  2. Preferably display, too, such other attributes as you select (kind, date modified, size).
  3. indicate visually the differences between the two folders: --
    (a) which files in the first folder are not in the second, and vice versa;
    (b) which files are in both folders but are newer in the first folder than in the second folder, and vice versa?

 

Obviously if a utility can list the contents of two folders next to one another, you could go through the two lists file-by-file. But that's not what I'm asking about.

 

Please note that I am not asking about comparing and showing the differences between two files. Thus so far as I can tell, the following apps do not do what I'm asking about:

  • Araxis Merge
  • Kaleidoscope
  • Path Finder

 

Path Finder, at least, can display two folders in parallel columns; but so far as I can tell, there's no way to get it to indicate what I ask in #3, above.

iMac, Mac OS X (10.7.3), 3.4GHz Corei7, 16GB, SSD + 2T HD
  • nerowolfe Level 6 Level 6 (13,070 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Apr 6, 2012 5:46 PM (in response to murrayE)

    You can, of course, open a second instance of Finder and overlay the two file lists and visually compare them.

    Use Cmd-N to launch a new Finder.

     

    If you are familiar with using the terminal there are several other ways to compare the contents of two directories.

    One such command is

    diff

    and here is some info on using it:

    http://hints.macworld.com/article.php?story=20070408062023352

     

    Not a trivial GUI solution, but it does work.

  • g_wolfman Level 4 Level 4 (1,110 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Apr 6, 2012 5:47 PM (in response to murrayE)

    There's an application called DeltaWalker that claims to do what you want.  However, I have no idea if it's actually any good, stable or suitable for your task.  It does appear to offer a free trial, however, so I guess you could find out.

     

    One (or a combination) of the utilities in the XFile System might also do what you want.

  • macjack Level 9 Level 9 (50,445 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Apr 6, 2012 5:52 PM (in response to murrayE)
  • nerowolfe Level 6 Level 6 (13,070 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Apr 6, 2012 6:44 PM (in response to macjack)

    Neat. Most of these are GUI front ends to terminal commands.

    But this one is not cheap.

     

    There are some xDif GUIs that are free, from various sources. They are written for other *nix OSs but may work on Lion. I don't know. Most would need to be compiled from source to run on Lion.

  • macjack Level 9 Level 9 (50,445 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Apr 6, 2012 7:58 PM (in response to nerowolfe)

    In /Developer/Applications/Utilities/FileMerge has some capabilities but Im not sure it would be enough for the OP.

  • ds store Level 7 Level 7 (30,305 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Apr 6, 2012 8:07 PM (in response to murrayE)

    DeCloner

  • gumsie Level 4 Level 4 (2,075 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Apr 6, 2012 11:37 PM (in response to macjack)

    Going off on an ever slight tangent for a mo MacJack but, shouldn't that folder exist at the top level if you've installed XCode?

  • Richard E. Cooke Level 2 Level 2 (220 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Jul 18, 2012 9:22 AM (in response to murrayE)

    This is the (most excellent) software I use on Windows:

    http://www.scootersoftware.com/index.php

     

     

    The are working on an OS X version - they already have Linux/Windows versions.

     

    I'm actually waiting for their version to come out.  I know their software is good on Windows, so I would rather wait for their MAC version than risk "trying out" something new.

  • Richard E. Cooke Level 2 Level 2 (220 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Jul 20, 2012 7:07 AM (in response to murrayE)

    Heh.  Yeah, running their Windows version in Parallels or VMware is the current "work around".

     

    I do have the full version of BC (file compare) that I use all the time for software.  I plan to buy the "alll OS" license for their folder contents compare when the MAC version comes out.

     

    I'm hoping my "holding off" until the MAC version comes out is helping motivate them to hurry up!

     

    I e-mailed a fresh "when" question to their sales department, it might be helpful if everybody watching this thread did so to.  This is the reply I got back:

    Scooter Sales <sales@scootersoftware.com>:

    Hi Richard,

     

    Thanks for your email.  We are working on a Mac version of Beyond Compare, but we aren't far enough into development to announce a release or beta test date.

     

    Most customers that need BC on the Mac are running it in a virtual copy of Windows using VMWare Fusion or Parallels Desktop.

     

    Some customers have also reported success using CrossOver (http://www.codeweavers.com/products/crossover/) or Wine (http://winebottler.kronenberg.org/) to run BC3 for Windows on a Mac.

     

    Unfortunately, we don't have a Mac mailing list, but we'll have an announcement on our web site when a Mac version is available.

     

    For new release information you can check our announcements forum:http://www.scootersoftware.com/vbulletin/forumdisplay.php?f=22 or Twitter:http://twitter.com/scootersoftware

     

    Regards,

    Jessica Reuschlein

    Scooter Software

     

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