DeltaWalker 1.8.6, released this week, adds support for comparing Microsoft Office and PDF files. And it works fast. I’m totally satisfied with how Deltopia implemented this. I use DeltaWalker primarily in OS X and a little in Windows. DeltaWalker has helped me ween myself from Windows and do more work in my preferred environment, OS X. And Office file comparison support is yet another nail in Windows’ coffin for me.
I believe DeltaWalker is the best overall OS X file/folder comparison tool available — it just doesn’t seem to be the best-known yet. Now that DeltaWalker can compare Office files and PDFs, I hope its notoriety will start to catch up with its exceptional feature set and quality.
Just before I purchased DeltaWalker, the developers told me to expect Word/Excel comparison support soon. That was an important feature for me. Deltopia delivered on their promise. In fact, DeltaWalker’s support for Microsoft Office files is far superior to that of BeyondCompare 2.0 — BeyondCompare 2.0 relies upon a VBA macro to extract the text from Word and Excel files for comparison, which wasn’t especially fast nor reliable for me.
But DeltaWalker’s support for Office files has been super fast and bulletproof. And DeltaWalker’s Office and PDF support is part of the core product, not just a third-party extension like it is with BeyondCompare 2.0. And BeyondCompare 2.0 requires a separate download to get its doc/xls comparison support, which wouldn’t bee a big deal if it had proven reliable for me.
Do I Have to Own Microsoft Office? Nope.
Another benefit of DeltaWalker’s more dedicated approach to Office file comparison support is that it doesn’t require the user to have Microsoft Office installed on the machine. Which is awesome for users of alternative word processors, such as OpenOffice.org. Whatever word processor or spreadsheet software you use, as long as you save the files in xls/xlsx or doc/docx format, DeltaWalker supports them. This shows some serious professionalism on Deltopia’s part. A kind of caring for real end users that you usually see more of from open source developers and less from commercial operations.
I didn’t focus on PowerPoint support in this article because I don’t use it. But it is supported by DeltaWalker 1.8.6 — quite comprehensively, I’m sure.