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Saturday, August 18, 2012

ExamDiff Pro 6.0: Improved HTML Diff Reports

The ExamDiff Pro 6.0 beta introduces some significant changes to how HTML diff reports look and feel, to make them more closely resemble the main ExamDiff Pro window.

Compare this HTML diff report from version 6.0:

to the old report from previous versions:

The most immediately noticeable change is the addition of diff bars in the file panes. Just like within ExamDiff Pro, clicking anywhere within a file pane will select the closest difference by marking its diff bar yellow and by displaying its summary in the diff selector. The selector itself is now prominently positioned at the top, rather than in the bottom-right corner as before, and displays summaries like "Diff 1: Delete 4 lines (1 - 4, first file) before line 1 (second file)" rather than just difference numbers.

Also, when you select a new difference in the selector or use the navigation controls (First / Previous / Next / Last), the selected diff will now be shown in the center of the screen (if possible), rather than being moved to the top of the screen as before. This makes the navigation controls in the report function exactly as they do within ExamDiff Pro.

We've found these usability changes to make a big improvement to the ease-of-use of diff reports. It's now easier than ever to navigate between differences within them, making them a great solution for those times when you need to share a diff report with colleagues or simply save one for yourself for future reference.

By the way, we've already updated DiffNow, our online ExamDiff Pro-powered file comparison utility, to use the new diff report template. If you haven't heard of DiffNow yet, be sure to check it out! It's handy for quickly comparing text fragments, files, or URLs and sharing results with just a few clicks.

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Thursday, August 16, 2012

ExamDiff Pro 6.0 Beta!

We are pleased to announce that we've just released a beta of ExamDiff Pro 6.0!

The biggest new feature in version 6.0 is our most-requested feature to date: three-way diff and merge. In three-way merge, three files are compared - a base file and two revision files ("yours" and "theirs") that are both modifications of the base - and the goal is to reconcile the changes made in the revision files into an output file. ExamDiff Pro allows for both intelligent automatic merge resolution and manual merge resolution with an easy-to-use interface, as shown above.

ExamDiff Pro 6.0 Beta also introduces a number of features aimed at improving usability. The quick view filters panel allows you to filter the display to show only differences, only identical items, or only newer/older files, without having to go to the View Filter settings. The overall difference navigation commands offer a convenient way to navigate between all differences, inline or not. The HTML diff report has undergone a major overhaul to improve diff navigation and selection, which I will write about soon. New document types have been added for Ruby, JavaScript, and CSS, and ExamDiff Pro 6.0 Beta also adds Windows 8 support.

You can find more details about the 6.0 beta, and a download link, here.

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