Using Vim as a diff tool
Firstly I will start with why to not use
diff. I am not suggesting a replacement, I have simply found that Vim offers a much better interface, that is available on most (*nix based) server environments for comparing and merging files side by side.
vim -d file_original.txt file_new.txt
Your tool of choice here is
vim -d, so if you like this as a ‘patch’ to
diff, why not be naughty and alias it? I have aliased
alias diff='vim -d' in my shell preferences.
Wow, i can see the difference between 2 files, big deal! Try adding more files to the arguments, suddenly we have loads more power to compare multiple files, easily.
vim -d file_original.txt file_new.txt file_new_ammendments.txt
ctrl+ww – will let you navigate buffers.
When comparing just 2 files, these commands will be handy when you select the lines to merge
dp– diff put
do– diff obtain/get
If you are in multi diff mode, these may be handy as you need to write long hand commands;
:diffget 3If you were in buffer 1, writing this command would obtain the difference in buffer 3
:diffpu 1Again, write this in buffer 3 and it will place the change in buffer 1