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XyDiff is a set of tools for creating and applying deltas from XML documents (similar to diff / patch). It was originally developed by the GEMO team at INRIA-Rocquencourt, near Paris. It was forked by Frankie Dintino to add features and to support more recent versions of gcc, clang, and Xerces-C++.

The algorithm used in XyDiff is described in the following research papers:

XyDiff includes two command-line applications: xydiff, a program which compares two XML files and creates a “delta” that describes the differences between the two documents, and xydelta, which can apply that delta to the first document in order to reconstruct the second. It also includes a shared library, which is used by php_xydiff.


xydiff requires that Xerces-C++ 3.x be installed. Xerces-C++ can be built from source, or it can be installed with the binaries and headers for your platform:

  • Ubuntu / Debian:
    apt-get install libxerces-c-dev
  • RedHat / CentOS / Fedora:
    yum install xerces-c-devel
  • Mac OS X (Homebrew)
    brew install xerces-c


Building from source

  1. Download xydiff-3.0.0.tar.gz, extract it, and cd into the directory xydiff-3.0.0.

  2. Run a typical configure / make. If Xerces-C++ was installed into an unusual location, you may need to pass its prefix to configure using, for example, --with-xercesc=/opt/xerces.

     sudo make install

Building with autotools (Linux / Unix / BSD / Mac OS X)

  1. Clone the xydiff repository:

    git clone
  2. Change directory to where you cloned the repository and generate the files from automake (≥ 1.10), autoconf (≥ 2.61) and m4 (≥ 1.4.6):

  3. Follow step (2) above in "Building from source"

Building on windows

  1. Install Visual Studio (windows builds have only been tested on VC9).
  2. Install the Microsoft Windows SDK for your OS if it is not already installed. Restart after installing.
  3. Create a working directory for the code (denoted below by %XYDIFF_DIR%).
  4. Download the Xerces-C++ binaries. For Visual Studio 2008 (VC9) and Visual Studio 2010 (VC10), install the Xerces-C++ binaries: (VC9, VC10). For Visual Studio 2012, you will need to download Xerces-C++ from source and build the bundled VC11 solution file. Extract to %XYDIFF_DIR%.
  5. Check out xydiff into %XYDIFF_DIR%\xydiff:
    git clone
  6. Open %XYDIFF_DIR%\xydiff\vc9.0\xydiff.sln. Choose "Release" as the active configuration, and build the solution


This code is licensed under the Lesser GPL. See LICENSE.TXT for the full license.


  • Grégory Cobena
  • Serge Abiteboul
  • Amélie Marian
  • Frankie Dintino