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In-depth comparison of files, archives, and directories.

diffoscope tries to get to the bottom of what makes files or directories different. It will recursively unpack archives of many kinds and transform various binary formats into more human-readable form to compare them. It can compare two tarballs, ISO images, or PDF just as easily.

Latest release: 161 (20 Oct 2020)

You can try it now using Docker:

echo foo > file1
echo bar > file2
docker run --rm -t -w $(pwd) -v $(pwd):$(pwd):ro \ file1 file2

… or try it on!




Example of diffoscope HTML output

Firefox extensions compared (HTML output)

Example of diffoscope text output

Debian packages compared (text output)

… and more examples on You can also view an demonstration interactive shell session (220K).


Get diffoscope


diffoscope is developed within the “Reproducible builds” effort.

Extending diffoscope to support new formats is quite straightforward in most cases. It also has a comprehensive test suite. Patches welcome!

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diffoscope is free software licensed under the GNU General Public License version 3 or later.


Alexis Murzeau, anthraxx, Baptiste Daroussin, Ben Hutchings,, Brett Smith, Ceridwen, Chris Lamb, Clemens Lang, Daniel Fullmer, Daniel Kahn Gillmor, Daniel Shahaf, Dhole, Ed Maste, Eli Schwartz, Emanuel Bronshtein, Esa Peuha, Frazer Clews, Graham Christensen, Guangyuan Yang, Helmut Grohne, Holger Levsen, HW42, James Clarke, Jean-Romain Garnier, Jelle van der Waa, Joachim Breitner, Juliana Oliveira, Juliana Oliveira Rodrigues, Juliana Rodrigues, Jérémy Bobbio, klemens, Marc Herbert, Marek Marczykowski-Górecki, Maria Glukhova, Marius Gedminas, Mattia Rizzolo, Michael Osipov, Michel Messerschmidt, Mike Hommey, Mike McQuaid, Milena Boselli Rosa, Paul Gevers, Paul Spooren, Paul Wise, Peter De Wachter, Rainer Müller, Reiner Herrmann, Ricardo Gaviria, Santiago Torres-Arias, Satyam Zode, siamezzze, Vagrant Cascadian, Vibhu, Will Thompson, Xavier Briand, Ximin Luo, and Yasushi SHOJI.