Compare XML Files

XML-aware Diff Tools in XMLSpy
  • Compare XML files in Text or Grid Views
  • XML-aware diff/merge options
  • Bi-directional merging
  • Syntax coloring & synchronized scrolling
  • 2- and 3-way comparison modes
  • Color-coded differences/conflicts
  • Directory sync tools
  • Generation of difference reports

XML Compare Tool

Compare XML files in XMLSpy
The XMLSpy XML Editor includes a visual XML diff tool that allows developers to easily compare and merge XML documents and directories in an intelligent, XML-aware manner.
The XMLSpy XML diff/merge engine is completely customizable. For example, you can specify if entities should be resolved, if namespace prefixes, whitespace, CDATA, processing instructions, comments, or the ordering of attributes/child elements should be ignored or not, and how to visualize differences.
In addition, you can merge the textual differences and differences in XML between two or three files as you are comparing them.

Why Choose an XML-Aware Diff Tool?

The nature of XML means text-only compare tools fall short in these important scenarios:
  • Suppose an XML developer changes the default namespace prefix in an XML instance document. This change does not materially affect the contents of the XML document, and while a conventional software differencing utility would report that virtually every line of code in the XML instance document has changed, the XMLSpy XML compare utility will deal with this change appropriately.
  • The order of XML attributes is irrelevant because XML processors do not consider the sequence that attributes appear in a particular element. XMLSpy accounts for this and intelligently ignores the attribute order, but a conventional differencing utility cannot and would therefore report every change in attribute ordering.
  • There are differences in XML when the ordering of child elements is irrelevant; for example, if a schema defines a relationship using an "all" compositor, the ordering of child elements is immaterial. The XMLSpy XML differencing utility can be set to overlook irrelevant differences, whereas a conventional differencing utility cannot.
  • An XML processor resolves entity references at run-time, so, although an XML file may not have changed, the entity definitions could have, resulting in a different XML file. A conventional software differencing utility would not pick up on this, but XMLSpy does.

Altova DiffDog: Diff Tool for All File Types

Specialized File, Directory, and Database Compare Tool
  • Compare text and source code files
  • Syntax-coloring & synchronized scrolling
  • XML-aware comparison mode
  • Grid and text view for XML diff
  • 2- and 3- way compare
  • Folder differencing and advanced directory sync
  • Database differencing (table structures and rows)
  • Word doc and OOXML comparison
  • ZIP archive comparison
  • Differences report generation

When do I choose DiffDog?

If you don't need a complete XML editor like XMLSpy, or if you need to diff other source code files, you can choose DiffDog for file, directory, and database comparisons.
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DiffDog also supports XML-aware comparisons, including graphical XML Schema differencing and will automatically generate an XSLT stylesheet to transform XML documents to the new XSD.
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You can download a free trial of DiffDog, or test drive the MissionKit tool suite, which includes both XMLSpy and DiffDog.

Get XMLSpy and DiffDog in the MissionKit Tool Suite

Choose the specially-priced Altova MissionKit to get both XMLSpy AND DiffDog compare tools - plus 5 other development software products - for less than the price of two.