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Python: filecmp.cmp() method

  • Last Updated : 10 Jan, 2020

Filecmp module in Python provides functions to compare files and directories. This module comes under Python’s standard utility modules. This module also consider the properties of files and directories for comparison in addition to data in them.

filecmp.cmp() method in Python is used to compare two files. This method by default performs shallow comparison (as by default shallow = True) that means only the os.stat() signatures (like size, date modified etc.) of both files are compared and if they have identical signatures then files are considered to be equal irrespective of contents of the files. If shallow is set to False then the comparison is done by comparing the contents of both files.

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Syntax: filecmp.cmp(file1, file2, shallow = True)

file1: The path of first file to be compared. It can be a string, bytes, os.PathLike object or an integer representing the path of the file.
file2: The path of second file to be compared. It can be a string, bytes, os.PathLike object or an integer representing the path of the file.
shallow (optional): A bool value ‘True’ or ‘False’. The default value of this parameter is True. If its value is True then only the metadata of files are compared. If False then the contents of the files are compared.

Return Type: This method returns a bool value True if specified files are equal or False if they are not.

Code: Use of filecmp.cmp() method to compare two files

# Python program to demonstrate
# filecmp.cmp() method 
import filecmp
# Path of first file
file1 = "/home/geeks/Desktop/gfg/data.txt"
# Path of second file
file2 = "/home/geeks/Desktop/gfg/gfg.txt"
# Compare the os.stat()
# signature i.e the metadata
# of both files 
comp = filecmp.cmp(file1, file2)
# Print the result of comparison
# Compare the
# contents of both files
comp = filecmp.cmp(file1, file2, shallow = False)
# Print the result of comparison
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