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The vim binary is able to answer by many names and it will tweak its behavior based on which name it is called. This is a somewhat common practice in Unix, where a program will support checking the name by which it's invoked and will behave differently depending on that name. At installation time, a single binary will be copied, but symbolic links or ...


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To extend on accepted answer: you can just read exactly same number of bytes from both files: vimdiff <(hexdump -C -n $(stat -c %s small) big) <(hexdump -C small) On Mac OSX, the command will instead be: vimdiff <(hexdump -C -n $(stat -f %z small) big) <(hexdump -C small)


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By default vim -d (at least my version, 7.4) will open files in vertical mode, i.e. side by side. (This is equivalent to using -O option.) To open files in "stacked" mode, i.e. one below another, add -o option.


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