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What DIFF-erence does it make?! Compare/Merge/Diff options with LMe/i...

  • 1.  What DIFF-erence does it make?! Compare/Merge/Diff options with LMe/i...

    Posted 03-16-2021 10:53
    I don't code.  You don't want me to.  Trust me.
    However, sometimes I do need to roll up my sleeves and whack away just to fill in and get something done.
    When I do, I want to make sure my esteemed colleagues can keep an eye on my kludgy bits and add a trace of elegance to whatever brute force approach I may have devised as a solution.
    To that end, here are some details on a few of the File Comparison options that are available for LMe and LMi either via the standard client, command line, Plugin for Rational/Eclipse/LegaSuite or our Harmonizer for LMi.

    LMe gui client: 
    For any file in the Parts, Developer Parts, Notifications or Archive windows, you have ready options to Compare files.
    Binaries will just show difference in sizes, but text-based files will also support these options:
    Right-click -> Actions -> Compare and Merge:

    Auto Compare

    Compares the copy in Development (or closest to Development) with the next highest Environment version in the Release.
    Simple LM 'Auto compare'

    Compare with...
    Pick your poison.  Use the 'Set' options to select the available part versions (including non-repo files in the filesystem or archives from the LM repo) for the comparison.  See the 'Help' topic on the dialog for more info.
    LM gui compare file options

    Compare and Merge (3-way compare with full filesystem and Private Version access):
    Best used for source reconciliation after Multiple checkouts or an Emergency checkout (straight from Production and checkin version going back to Production).
    Can reference three versions (pre-checkout archive and the two new versions after the checkin).  Use the LM gui to select source to pull from each version and then save to your local checked out copy.
    Compare and merge

    When accessed from the Notifications window, can perform a checkout and then a Compare and Merge. In addition to the Checkout and Merge options, can also easily use the options there to clear the conflicts for the Multiple or Emergency checkouts after the Merge.
    Review Help for more info on options for reconciliation.

    Rocket Plugin for Rational/Eclipse/LegaSuite (including option to specify alternate tool for diff for versions 8.2.300+).
    We can feed either the LPEX or Eclipse Compare editors (I think the Eclipse version manages whitespace better for IBM i source, but you can be the judge).  Options for LMe and LMi to select and 'Set' versions of source from active environments (and from Archives with version 8.2.300 or higher).

    Windows Harmonizer:
    May use IBM Access Client Solutions (ACS java-based app for IBM i iNavigator and other utilities) with our Windows Harmonizer (see LMi Downloads to get a copy) to leverage the LMe gui compare options with your LMi managed code without using Rational and the Plugin.

    Command Line
    See help or prompt commands for more info on usage.
    ald compare [-c comp_command] [-d directory] [-e env] [-H url] files...
    ald merge [-c merge_command] [-d directory] [-e env] [-H url] [-r] file

    Diff reporting options:
    - For LMe - Use of the 'Request Checkin' action will automagically create a diff report (DIFFRPT) that can be accessed via LM gui for the cko user or later in Ops Portal for use in code review.
    - For LMi - Can configure Harmonizer source compare by environment to run during promote actions automatically.  See Release definition and options for 'Run S/Compare when promoting to' for the ITG, QUA or PDN environments.  Can then see the LISTFILE reports for the promote user for each promoted source file.

    Dale Asher
    Rocket Software


  • 2.  RE: What DIFF-erence does it make?! Compare/Merge/Diff options with LMe/i...

    Posted 03-18-2021 10:01
    Thanks for the detailed post about source code compare and merge, Dale! But you didn't mention one of my favorite ways to access compare and merge, right from the LMi 5250 menus! I use option 35 from the Work with objects by release panel. It pops up a screen that asks me what I want to compare and shows me all of the versions of that object that LMi is currently managing, those in D, I, Q, P and even the ones in the archive. Comparing P to the archive is a great way to find out why the object currently running in production is suddenly not working :). 

    I also find these options very useful when I am managing a conflict in LMi. You can easily compare the two members that are in conflict with each other. There is even an option 19 here to merge the two together.

    Joe Baumgarten
    Customer Solutions Engineer
    Rocket Software

  • 3.  RE: What DIFF-erence does it make?! Compare/Merge/Diff options with LMe/i...

    Posted 03-18-2021 11:18
    Thx for calling that out, Joe.
    The gui options are sweet, but greenscreen is keen!
    Can absolutely take advantage of the LMi native Harmonizer compare options right in your terminal sessions!

    Dale Asher
    Rocket Software