Forum Thread

Software to compare files from backup/recovery

Dr. J 25,042 3,353 February 2, 2016 at 02:39 PM
My work PC shit the bed yesterday. Long story short the second partition (first is a Lenovo recovery) is listed as RAW and Windows (another machine) constantly wants to reformat it.

I have a backup from ~ October, 2015, and I have had some success recovering files off the RAW drive. I am talking about working files and folders, not OS or program information.

The problem is the recovery data isn't 100% complete, but there is some "overlap" with the old backup. So I am looking for software that will do a wholesale comparison of the different file sets (folder/file sets) and note the newer files where applicable. I intend to merge the backup and recovery for a new PC but want to work off the newest, best files from the two sources.

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https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Com...ison_tools
I've mostly used diff and winmerge.
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#4
Quote from jkee View Post :
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Com...ison_tools
I've mostly used diff and winmerge.

Will any of these "merge" the directory structure/files using some sort of criteria (e.g. largest or newest file, etc)?
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Quote from Dr. J View Post :
Will any of these "merge" the directory structure/files using some sort of criteria (e.g. largest or newest file, etc)?
In my experience no. They will go by file name and do either a binary or "rules based" comparison and you decide on the merge on the flagged differences.

Different dates of identical files will be considered matches unless you specify otherwise or the date itself causes a change in the binary. Exe's and jpegs will likely have this issues since the merger programs are normally built for text.

I believe they will also need identical directory structures for comparison.
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Quote from Pedantyc View Post :
In my experience no. They will go by file name and do either a binary or "rules based" comparison and you decide on the merge on the flagged differences.

Different dates of identical files will be considered matches unless you specify otherwise or the date itself causes a change in the binary. Exe's and jpegs will likely have this issues since the merger programs are normally built for text.

I believe they will also need identical directory structures for comparison.
Yeah, trial and error is required in most cases.
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#7
Identical directory structures isn't a problem nor are EXE's fortunately.

I have the recovery running on another rig and just got the new laptop this AM so I have yet to really sit down and see what it was able to do/what I have to work with.
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#8
beuyond compare can do a lot just not free
3-WAY MERGE Pro edition only
Beyond Compare's merge view allows you to combine changes from two versions of a file or folder into a single output. Its intelligent approach allows you to quickly accept most changes while carefully examining conflicts. Color coding and section highlighting allow you to accept, reject, or combine changes, simply and easily. When merging files you can change any line in the output with the built-in syntax-highlighting editor. By using Beyond Compare's powerful file type support and ability to favor changes from one file, you can trivially accept many changes without even seeing them.

You can use Beyond Compare directly from most version control systems, giving you all of the powerful comparing and merging support you need when you need it most. Integrated source control commands are also available, allowing you to check in and check out files without interrupting your work.

click for screenshot
3-way folder merge Pro edition onlyclick for screenshot
3-way text merge Pro edition only
SYNCHRONIZE FOLDERS
Beyond Compare's intuitive Folder Sync interface lets you reconcile differences in your data automatically. You can efficiently update your laptop, backup your computer, or manage your website, and Beyond Compare will handle all the details. You can copy to and from disks, FTP servers, and zip files, all using the same interface. Anything you don't want affected can be easily filtered out, and all of the powerful comparison techniques are available, making the backup as fast or robust as you need.

You can automate repetitive tasks using a flexible scripting language, and any script can be called from the command line, allowing you to schedule your syncs for when it's most convenient.
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