- Export/gather XML from 2 versions of one of your FileMaker database files using the Tools —> Save a Copy as XML… menu item.
- After FMComparison launches, you will be presented with an interface allowing you to select the original version and the modified version. Click the appropriate Select button for each.
- FMComparison will warn you if you select the same file twice, or if you select 2 copies of the same file.
- FMComparison will warn you if you select a more recent file as the Original file, but it will not stop the process. There are situations where you might want to do this, either because you exported the original xml after the modified xml, or if you are looking for a guide to rolling back a series of changes.
- After both files have loaded, click Begin Comparison (in the Configuration section “Step 3: Run Comparison”).
- Once the comparison has completed, you can click View Comparison to review the results.
Doesn’t FMPerception have a Diff tool already?
The diff tool in FMPerception looked at each edited property as a “change”. Unfortunately, this produced an excessively detailed report that was difficult to understand. Many users would dump the data into something like FileMaker in order to isolate the kinds of changes you were most concerned about. Too many trees, not enough forest.
FMComparison looks at a FileMaker element (field, table, script, layout, etc.) as the core unit of change. Any changed properties in an element will cause the element to be flagged as “modified”. Once you click on the element, FMComparison itemizes the changes to just that element. Additionally, the ordering of elements relative to each other is isolated into special Organization categories, allowing us to isolate element changes specific to those made to that element itself. If changes to the order of scripts or layouts are not relevant to your process, you never have to look at them.