How To Compare Files In Notepad++

Notepad is one of the most useful office tools available on PC. You can write whatever comes to your mind, notes, reminders or even use it for other official purposes. Though it has many features, you can also use Notepad to compare files. These features can be useful for checking mistakes and difference between two files.

Say, for example, you are a coder and have made a project with all the necessary steps. But you want to compare the program you created with others of the same kind and find out the difference between them. It could be pretty messy as these programme files consist of codings and a large text content which you cannot compare manually. Similarly, Quality Analysts (Testers) have to compare the actual and the expected results in files with a lot of text.

To make this easy, Notepad++ brings the file comparing feature to compare two files easily. So in this article, we look at the method for the same.

Steps To Compare Files In Notepad++

Step 1

Open Notepad++ application. To use the compare feature you have to download an additional plugin. For doing that, click on Plugins, on the above-given menu titles. After that, a small window will appear, here select Plugin Admin.

Notepad++ Plugin install

Step 2

In this pop-up window, type Compare on the Research bar and then you will be able to see the compare tool. Checkmark the box in front of it and then hit Install on the top right corner of this pop-up window to install this Notepad++ plugin. Now the plugin for comparing two different files is ready to be used.

plugin admin

Step 3

Once the plugin is installed, Notepad++ will restart. After it’s open, again tap on the Plugin on the above menu titles. Now, will be able to see the compare option in that small window.

For comparing two files you have to open both of them in the Notepad++ window and then select the compare tool option form the plugin menu.

how to compare files in Notepad++

You can compare files with various settings here. And also see the difference that either you have added or made since the last save of any particular text file.

You set any open file as the default by tapping set as first to Compare. This default file that is selected will be used to compare with other selected files.

Or you can simply select compare to compare two files in the same window side by side. And it will show you all the added, moved, deleted lines etc. with different color highlightings. You can also use Ctr+Alt+C to compare the files directly from the keyboard.

Compare two files in notepad++

Also Read: 7 Best Apps To Transfer Files Between Android Devices

Notepad++ Compare Settings

As mentioned above, Notepad++ will show all the differences in both the files side by side and highlighting accordingly with different colors. In addition to this, you can also use your custom color settings for these highlights. You can set different colors for the different situation like added line etc. mentioned above and a few other options as seen in the image below. For accessing these settings, click on Plugin > Compare and then Settings. When you’re done selecting desired settings tap on ok and your custom comparing tools or symbols will be ready.

how to compare files in Notepad++ - tools and symbol settings

Now you won’t have to spend hours to find the difference or compare any two files. It’s just super easy with Notepad++ comparing feature.

We hope you got the method to compare files using the Notepad++ plugin. In case of any query feel free to ask in the comment section below.

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