compare two files freeware

Howto: Compare two files using freeware or open source

Diffmerge is my favorite program (open source at least) that I use to compare files.

From their website:

DiffMerge is an application to visually compare and merge files for Windows, Mac OS X and Linux.

DiffMerge in Vault

DiffMerge was developed as the internal compare/merge tool for SourceGear Vault.

Vault is a version control tool designed to be a compelling replacement for Visual SourceSafeand offers optional, integrated bug tracking.

Vault includes DiffMerge, and is available for immediate download; installs in minutes; and is FREE to try for 30 days (and always free for single users).

Learn more about Vault.

product features

Graphically shows the changes between two files. Includes intra-line highlighting and full support for editing.

Graphically shows the changes between 3 files. Allows automatic merging (when safe to do so) and full control over editing the resulting file.

Performs a side-by-side comparison of 2 folders, showing which files are only present in one file or the other, as well as file pairs which are identical or different.

Windows Explorer Integration.

Right-click on any two files in Windows Explorer to diff them immediately.

Configurable.

Rulesets and options provide for customized appearance and behavior.

International.

Compatible with 42 different character encodings.

Cross-platform.

Identical feature set on Windows, Mac OS X, and Linux

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