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How to: Compare Two Folders

Compare allows you to see the differences between two server folders, two local folders, or a server folder and a local folder. You can also use Compare to compare two files. For more information, see How to: Compare Two Files.

Required Permissions

To perform these procedures, you must have the Read permission set to Allow. For more information, see Team Foundation Server Permissions.


To compare two local folders, you do not need Team Foundation Server permissions.

To compare folders using Folder Difference

  1. On the View menu, click Other Windows, and then click Source Control Explorer.

  2. In Source Control Explorer, go to the source folder you want to compare, right-click, and select Compare.

    The Compare dialog box appears and the version control path to the folder you selected is in the Source Path box.

  3. Under Source Version, select the Type you want to use for comparison: Changeset, Date, Label, Latest Version, or Workspace Version.

  4. Enter the Target Path or click Browse and go to the target folder.

  5. Under Filter, add or remove file and folder filters.

    For more information, see Folder Comparison Filters.

    Check the Filter local paths only box if you want to apply the filter only to local paths.

  6. Under View Options, select which items you want shown in the comparison results. You can choose a combination of view options by checking or clearing the following boxes:

    • Show items that exist only in source path

    • Show items that exist only in target path

    • Show items that are different

    • Show items that are the same

  7. Click OK.

    A Folder Difference window displays a list of items compared in the source and target folders. Should differences arise between a server folder and your local folder, you can resolve them from the Folder Difference window. For more information, see How to: Reconcile Differences Between Two Folders.