The Merge folder comparison window enables you to review and merge the changes within different versions of a text file by launching text, image or binary comparisons for each row of files that interests you.
To view the changes to a file, first select the file by clicking on it in the results list. Next, click the Launch comparisons button in the ribbon. A file comparison window will open and you can review and reconcile the changes between the versions of the file.
Launching multiple file comparisons
You can open file comparison windows for more than one file at a time by selecting multiple rows in the folder comparison results list before choosing the Launch comparisons button. Hold down Ctrl or Shift when clicking on files in the folder comparison windows to select multiple rows.
When subsequent rows in a multi-row selection each contain only a single file, the files will be combined into a single comparison instead of a separate comparison being launched for each row. This behaviour makes it possible to compare files that have been renamed. (See the next section for how to launch a file comparison for arbitrary files.)
You can also use the Select changed command from the Select rows menu in the ribbon to select all the changed files before clicking on the Launch comparisons button.
Launching a file comparison for arbitrary files
A file comparison can be launched for any two or three arbitrary files in the folder comparison:
- For the first file to be compared, right-click the file and choose Explorer▸Queue for comparison from its context menu.
- If a total of three files are to be compared (possible only in the Professional Edition of Merge), repeat the previous step for the second file.
- Once two or three files have been queued in this way, right-click the final file to be compared.
- From the Explorer submenu of the final file’s context menu, choose either Compare with Araxis Merge (+ 1 in queue) or Explorer▸Compare with Araxis Merge (+ 2 in queue), depending on whether you have queued one or two files.
- A comparison will be opened comparing the queued file or files with the final file.
If the Compare with Araxis Merge and Queue for Comparison items do not appear in the Explorer submenu, check that the Include ‘Compare with Araxis Merge’ in Windows File Explorer menus option is enabled on the Application page.
Limiting the number of opened file comparisons
Each file comparison window that is opened uses a certain amount of system resources. There is a configurable limit on the number of file comparison windows that the folder comparison window will open to prevent these resources being exhausted. This limit can be adjusted using the controls on the Launch page in the options dialog.
A typical method of working is as follows:
- Choose the Select changed command from the Select rows menu to select all the files that have changed between the first and second folder hierarchies.
- Click Launch comparisons to open a file comparison window for each of the selected files. A file is deselected when a file comparison window is opened for it.
- Review and/or edit the content of the file comparison windows that were opened. Close each file comparison window when you have finished with it.
- Return to the folder comparison window when you have closed all the file comparison windows.
- Click Launch comparisons again. If there are any remaining selected files in the list, another batch of file comparison windows will be opened.
Repeat the last three steps until there are no more selected files.
Updating the folder comparison after editing files
To update the folder comparison after making changes to a file, select the file and click on the Retest selected button in the ribbon to refresh the folder comparison results for that file after making changes.