I am trying to compare a folder with a zip file to see if there are any meaningful differences between the source files they contain.

I have set my compare to ignore the folder structure for simplicity, and checked the Ignore Unimportant Differences option.

When I perform the compare, it shows many files have binary differences (≠). However, if I open these files in a new view to see the differences, it shows that all differences are unimportant. When I go back to the folder view, I see the status has changed to the ≈ sign.

Is there any way to force Beyond Compare to automatically perform this comparison, so I don't have to do this manually? In the rules menu, I have checked "Compare contents" and "Rules-based comparison", but it does not seem to be working.

Rules Settings

Is this a bug? Is this a limitation when comparing against zip files? Are my settings correct?

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You need to switch to Handling tab and change Archive handling check-box to As folder always:

Beyond Compare - Session Settings - Folder Compare

From documentation:

Archive handling (e.g. zip files)

As folders always treats archive files like regular folders.

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  • 1
    I changed this setting as shown, and re-did the compare I did the other day. It still shows the files as 'binary different' until I manually open them (at which point it changes to 'unimportant differences'). – Casey Kuball Sep 18 '15 at 18:40
  • Have you changed the setting for all sessions (Also update session defaults in checkbox at the bottom of dialog)? – ge0rdi Sep 18 '15 at 18:45
  • Yes, I checked the box to change the setting for session defaults. – Casey Kuball Sep 18 '15 at 18:46
  • What version of Beyond Compare do you have? I have 4.0.7 and it works for me well. – ge0rdi Sep 18 '15 at 18:49
  • I have version 3.2.4. Unfortunately, I highly doubt I'll be able to upgrade. – Casey Kuball Sep 18 '15 at 18:59

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