Seeing differences between files

As using Git, looking changes of files with git diff is common. Always we can check the status of files with git status, including whether there is a new file that isn’t added to index, existence of changed files.

I downloaded the syllabus of each course I registered before the start of the semester. This is the first week of semester, professors introduce their course with the adjusted syllabus. Of course I can access the updated ones, but I can’t sure that the files which already I have are the same with which I downloaded right before. I want to keep the old one and the new one both, avoid just overwriting them.

Comparing binary files

I just wanted to check whether two binary files are the same or not, no matter what the difference is.


You can use fc, file compare, which is Microsoft DOS command.

fc /b file1 file2

The /b flag is for a binary comparison. If two files are the same, it prints a message like ‘FC: no differences encountered’, if they’re not, it shows each byte of two files per line.


You can use cmp which compares two files byte by byte.

cmp file1 file2

When two files are the same, it prints no message and return 0. If they are different, it prints some message and return 1.