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I would like to compare two excel spreadsheets. I have found many Windows-based solution but nothing for Mac OS X. Are you aware of

  • a build-in way to perform a diff (didn't find much in the help)
  • a standalone tool (for Mac)
  • an online tool (data is not sensitive, comparing in the cloud would be no problem)

At the moment the only solution I got is exporting to a comma separated file and compare with diff on the command line. I was thinking to write a small Perl script but before investing too much time I wanted to be sure I am not missing a simpler option.

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Are any of the links on this page any use? – Clare Macrae Sep 19 '11 at 6:43
@Clare: although the majority of the tools in the list have Mac in the name they are marked as Windows tools. Even Excel Mac Compare download link results in a Windows executable. – Matteo Sep 19 '11 at 7:57
Oh dear: sorry for the red herring... – Clare Macrae Sep 19 '11 at 8:13
up vote 5 down vote accepted

Usually what I would do is copy the Excel spreadsheets into Word, then use Word's Merge Documents feature (might have been Merge/Compare or simply Compare Documents previously to 2011) to see the differences between them. Depending on how big your spreadsheet is, however, that might not work for you.

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It's not so big, I'll try. – Matteo Sep 17 '11 at 12:53

There is a Mac version of Araxis Merge, which is an excellent program for comparing and merging mange kinds of files, and folders of files.

Its History page seems to suggest that it does compare Excel files on Mac.

There's a 30 day evaluation, so you could try it out and see if it does what you need.

(I have no affiliation with the company - am just a very frequent user of the Windows version of the tool)

share|improve this answer
Thanks for the hint. I tried the results I get are too similar to a comparison of the CSV versions which I can get for free. For 99 EUR I was expecting something more. – Matteo Sep 19 '11 at 6:37

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