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How to compare the differences between two PDF files?

I'm currently summarizing a PDF of a Course I will need to do again next year,
it is possible that the contents of the PDF will change which would introduce mistakes in my summary.

Is there a way to view the changes between two versions of a PDF file?

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marked as duplicate by harrymc, Tom Wijsman, random Sep 6 '10 at 17:49

This question has been asked before and already has an answer. If those answers do not fully address your question, please ask a new question.

    
Indeed is, but I didn't found that one... I'll try to improve it. –  Tom Wijsman Sep 6 '10 at 16:34
    
Actually, the possible duplicate at superuser.com/q/46123/48480 is a operating system dependend question (windows) while this one (and most of the answers) are independend from the os - or prefer *NIX... –  MaoPU Sep 6 '10 at 20:17
    
Woops, but well... There are enough answers in both. :-) –  Tom Wijsman Sep 7 '10 at 0:51
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3 Answers

up vote 2 down vote accepted

I have been using pdftotext of the xpdf toolbox before to export the content as plain text and compare it with my favourite diff tool. Right now I found pdfdiff, a python skript, which does exactly, what I did manually before. A quick test showed, that it does what it should.

So thanks for your question which made me look for a new, useful tool.

Edit:

I would suggest using it with meld, a great diff tool, which is supported by pdfdiff.

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Thanks, I'll check it out in the future... If it works great I'll accept your answer, else I'll bump my question. :-) –  Tom Wijsman Sep 4 '10 at 19:05
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You want to use i‑net PDF content comparer.

enter image description here

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Thanks, I'll check it out in the future... If it works great I'll accept your answer, else I'll bump my question. :-) –  Tom Wijsman Aug 26 '10 at 23:08
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My first answer would be to check the file size, or if you want something more exact, simply do an MD5 checksum verification (on mac, it's /sbin/md5 vi command line). For example if you have files a.pdf and a.newer.pdf, you can do this:

md5 -q a.pdf && md5 -q a.newer.pdf

which should return something like

e097902c53d9066aaf679037b6432bdb
920621db3765f6d580a498035b587f67

Even a small change will cause a huge hash difference.

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1  
Yeah, I know about md5, but I want to compare the contents. –  Tom Wijsman Aug 26 '10 at 23:07
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