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Compare-Object

JuanPablo Jofre|Last Updated: 11/17/2016
|
2 Contributors

SYNOPSIS

Compares two sets of objects.

SYNTAX

Compare-Object [-ReferenceObject] <PSObject[]> [-DifferenceObject] <PSObject[]> [-SyncWindow <Int32>]
 [-Property <Object[]>] [-ExcludeDifferent] [-IncludeEqual] [-PassThru] [-Culture <String>] [-CaseSensitive]
 [<CommonParameters>]

DESCRIPTION

The Compare-Object cmdlet compares two sets of objects. One set of objects is the "reference set," and the other set is the "difference set."

The result of the comparison indicates whether a property value appeared only in the object from the reference set (indicated by the <= symbol), only in the object from the difference set (indicated by the => symbol) or, if the IncludeEqual parameter is specified, in both objects (indicated by the == symbol).

If the reference set or the difference set is null ($null), this cmdlet generates a terminating error.

EXAMPLES

Example 1: Compare the content of two text files

PS C:\>Compare-Object -ReferenceObject $(Get-Content C:\test\testfile1.txt) -DifferenceObject $(Get-Content C:\test\testfile2.txt)

This command compares the contents of two text files. It displays only the lines that appear in one file or in the other file, not lines that appear in both files.

Example 2: Compare each line of content in two text files

PS C:\>Compare-Object -ReferenceObject $(Get-Content C:\Test\testfile1.txt) -DifferenceObject $(Get-Content C:\Test\testfile2.txt) -IncludeEqual

This command compares each line of content in two text files. It displays all lines of content from both files, indicating whether each line appears in only Textfile1.txt or Textfile2.txt or whether each line appears in both files.

Example 3: Compare two sets of process objects

PS C:\>$Processes_Before = Get-Process
PS C:\> notepad
PS C:\> $Processes_After = Get-Process
PS C:\> Compare-Object -ReferenceObject $Processes_Before -DifferenceObject $Processes_After

These commands compare two sets of process objects.

The first command uses the Get-Process cmdlet to get the processes on the computer. It stores them in the $processes_before variable.

The second command starts Notepad.

The third command uses the Get-Process cmdlet again and stores the resulting processes in the $processes_after variable.

The fourth command uses the Compare-Object cmdlet to compare the two sets of process objects. It displaysthe differences between them, which include the new instance of Notepad.

PARAMETERS

-CaseSensitive

Indicates that comparisons should be case-sensitive.

Type: SwitchParameter
Parameter Sets: (All)
Aliases: 

Required: False
Position: Named
Default value: None
Accept pipeline input: False
Accept wildcard characters: False

-Culture

Specifies the culture to use for comparisons.

Type: String
Parameter Sets: (All)
Aliases: 

Required: False
Position: Named
Default value: None
Accept pipeline input: False
Accept wildcard characters: False

-DifferenceObject

Specifies the objects that are compared to the reference objects.

Type: PSObject[]
Parameter Sets: (All)
Aliases: 

Required: True
Position: 1
Default value: None
Accept pipeline input: True (ByValue)
Accept wildcard characters: False

-ExcludeDifferent

Indicates that this cmdlet displays only the characteristics of compared objects that are equal.

Type: SwitchParameter
Parameter Sets: (All)
Aliases: 

Required: False
Position: Named
Default value: None
Accept pipeline input: False
Accept wildcard characters: False

-IncludeEqual

Indicates that this cmdlet displays characteristics of compared objects that are equal. By default, only characteristics that differ between the reference and difference objects are displayed.

Type: SwitchParameter
Parameter Sets: (All)
Aliases: 

Required: False
Position: Named
Default value: None
Accept pipeline input: False
Accept wildcard characters: False

-PassThru

Returns an object representing the item with which you are working. By default, this cmdlet does not generate any output.

Type: SwitchParameter
Parameter Sets: (All)
Aliases: 

Required: False
Position: Named
Default value: None
Accept pipeline input: False
Accept wildcard characters: False

-Property

Specifies an array of properties of the reference and difference objects to compare.

Type: Object[]
Parameter Sets: (All)
Aliases: 

Required: False
Position: Named
Default value: None
Accept pipeline input: False
Accept wildcard characters: False

-ReferenceObject

Specifies an array of objects used as a reference for comparison.

Type: PSObject[]
Parameter Sets: (All)
Aliases: 

Required: True
Position: 0
Default value: None
Accept pipeline input: False
Accept wildcard characters: False

-SyncWindow

Specifies the number of adjacent objects that this cmdlet inspects while looking for a match in a collection of objects. This cmdlet examines adjacent objects when it does not find the object in the same position in a collection. The default value is [Int32]::MaxValue, which means that this cmdlet examines the entire object collection.

Type: Int32
Parameter Sets: (All)
Aliases: 

Required: False
Position: Named
Default value: None
Accept pipeline input: False
Accept wildcard characters: False

CommonParameters

This cmdlet supports the common parameters: -Debug, -ErrorAction, -ErrorVariable, -InformationAction, -InformationVariable, -OutVariable, -OutBuffer, -PipelineVariable, -Verbose, -WarningAction, and -WarningVariable. For more information, see about_CommonParameters (http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?LinkID=113216).

INPUTS

System.Management.Automation.PSObject

You can pipe a DifferenceObject object to this cmdlet.

OUTPUTS

None, or the objects that are different

When you use the PassThru parameter, Compare-Object returns the objects that differed. Otherwise, this cmdlet does not generate any output.

NOTES

Group-Object

Measure-Object

New-Object

Select-Object

Sort-Object

Tee-Object

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