A Quick Way to Compare Files



Have you heard about filecmp and how to use it for a quick way to compare files in Python? Sometimes when writing a unit test in Python, you need to assert that two files are the same. A naive solution would be to loop both files and the lines of the files into lists and compare both lists (assuming that both files are plain text).

Luckily, Python has a native library that can do the job much easier and cleaner. when trying to run a simple file comparison.

How to use it

You can simply use python filecmp to do the job. Please see the example below:

# Please assume that 'file1.txt' is different than 'file2.txt'
>>> import filecmp
>>> filecmp.cmp('file1.txt', 'file1.txt')
>>> filecmp.cmp('file1.txt', 'file2.txt')

More Resources

Here are three of my favorite Python Books in case you want to learn more about it.

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