How do I use the "Compare" tool for customizing my template files?

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In the list of your template files, there are normally three buttons from which you can choose an action whenever a file has been edited.


You'll also notice that the background is orange. Any file that has been modified will have an orange background; a green background signals that the file is a custom addition.

Normally, to change the code of a file, you click the Edit button; to revert the file back to the original version that was loaded off the server, you click Revert. However, if you are in the middle of customizing a template file, you can use the Compare button to your advantage. The Compare button will allow you to compare the current version of your file (in a non-editable screen) side-by-side with the version that is default on the server.

To get to the Compare button:

1.) Login to your store's control panel.

2.) Click on Design.


3.) Click on the Template Files tab.


4.) Scroll down until you find the file you wish to compare to the default version, opening any folders as necessary.

5.) Click Compare.


6.) Here, you'll see the two files: the server version on the left, and your version on the right. (Click the picture to view it full-size.)

The red bar means that something has been deleted in the current file contents that was originally present in the default version. Green lines mean that something has been added to the current file.


You can change the way that the files are viewed in this comparison by changing the options in the blue bar at the top.


Remember, this is a non-editable screen, so you will still need to make any changes to your template files through the FTP or built-in editor. However, this can be an invaluable tool that will help you replace any standard template file content, or debug any issues you may come across while customizing your store.

When you're done with the compare screen, simply close it and you should be placed back onto your control panel.

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Drew N, Community Manager

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Posted 4 years ago

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