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diffopc: a DIFF utility for Open XML

diffopc: a DIFF utility for Open XML

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If you're doing much Open XML development, you probably sometimes need to compare two versions of a document and look closely at the differences. Stephane Rodriguez's diffopc tool is a utility program that makes short work of this sort of a task.

Diffopc takes any two OPC (Open Packaging Convention) files as inputs (e.g., Open XML documents or XPS documents), and displayes a well-organized summary of the differences in a web browser. You can look at the parts that have changed, or drill down into a part and see the specific differences in the XML markup.

Download or read more about diffopc here.

  • Thanks for the link.

    This tool sure can make diffs, but it also allows programming by example. I have taken the long article posted by B.Jones the other day (http://blogs.msdn.com/brian_jones/archive/2006/10/16/simple-wordprocessingml-document-video-demo.aspx), and here is how to achieve the same using diffopc :

    - Start Word 2007, create a blank document, save it as Word1_original.docx and save it as Word1_modified.docx. For the remainder of the steps, you don't need to close .docx documents in order to make diffs.
    - Start the diffopc tool, make a diff between Word1_original.docx and Word1_modified.docx. Note the structure and content of parts. Keep diffopc running for the remainder of the steps.
    - In Word1_modified.docx, add a paragraph of text and save it as Word1_modified2.docx
    - Make a diff between Word1_modified.docx and Word1_modified2.docx, and watch what's getting introduced and changed.
    - In Word1_modified2.docx, add a picture and save it as Word1_modified3.docx
    - Make a diff between Word1_modified2.docx and Word1_modified3.docx, and watch what's getting introduced and changed.
    - In Word1_modified3.docx, add a hyperlink and save it as Word1_modified4.docx
    - Make a diff between Word1_modified3.docx and Word1_modified4.docx, and watch what's getting introduced and changed.

    That's it.
  • Thank you.  Thank you.  

    Your tool saved my day (possibly my week).  I could not figure out why Excel would not read my worksheets.  One minute with your diff tool and I had my answer.  Now if only Excel inself were so kind as to issue a message more useful than "the format does not match the extension".  Come on guys, lets be more helpful, especially now that end users are encouraged to muck around inside these files.
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