Let Apple Xcode FileMerge save your life

A while back I had a Magento upgrade go horribly wrong for no apparent reason.  The upgrader conveniently didn’t install a lot of necessary files and for whatever reason no matter how many times I reverted to a backup I ended up the same place.  Neither the frontend or the backend worked correctly.  This happens in Magentoland.  Luckily after some frantic moments I came across this great tool: Apple’s Xcode FileMerge.  FileMerge is one of the utilities installed with Xcode and  is essentially a diff tool on steroids.  It allows you to compare two folders, in my case my current install and a fresh install of the version I was upgrading to, and from there one of the things it allows you to do is make a folder of files that are different between the two; essentially all the files missing from my upgrade.  From there a quick copy into my current install and everything worked again.  I can’t say enough about how cool this tool is.  I now use this after all my web app upgrades to make sure everything worked according to plan that isn’t apparent by simple testing.  It’s also great for comparing a modified but poorly documented codebase (not yours of course!) when you are trying to do a version upgrade, for instance with message board software.

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