cmp command become really handy to quickly check if 2 files are identical or what are the differences between these files in bytes number and which are the lines has any differences between both files.
Let’s take a look at an example compare between 2 ” text, video, script, …” files any kind of files with any extension.
first.txt, and second.txt
open command line interface “Terminal”
cmp -c first.txt second.txt
depending on the content of these two files, the output might become like this if there are any differences.
first.txt second.txt differ: byte 1, line 1 is 141 a 143 c
it means that the difference between both of them had a difference on byte 1 located on the line number 1.
if both files are identical it will take you to add a new command line.
Compare the first file to the second file using bytes number.
cmp -l first.txt second.txt
1 141 12
cmp: EOF on 1.txt
These two lines shows the number of the byte in decimal and the different in octal value in the second line.
Here are more informations about cmp command, you can display it on the terminal using this command.
- -b –print-bytes Print differing bytes.
- -i SKIP –ignore-initial=SKIP Skip the first SKIP bytes of input.
- -i SKIP1:SKIP2 –ignore-initial=SKIP1:SKIP2
- Skip the first SKIP1 bytes of FILE1 and the first SKIP2 bytes of FILE2.
- -l –verbose Output byte numbers and values of all differing bytes.
- -n LIMIT –bytes=LIMIT Compare at most LIMIT bytes.
- -s –quiet –silent Output nothing; yield exit status only.
- -v –version Output version info.
- –help Output this help.