What is the best way to compare workflows?

Does anyone have a suggestion on how best to compare two workflows to see differences?

This is helpful when you have one you are testing out and making changes and need to compare it to production to know the differences so that you can modify vs recreate the new workflow in its entirety.

We tried the export workflow, but that just creates an unreadable file for import.

And, even if we could read it, we don't know if it includes any validators, conditions, post functions, and properties since the import doesn't import ANY of those (different story..but, not sure of the import's value when it doesn't import all the details).

And, yes, the workaround is two screens, side-by-side, painfully going through each workflow step and transition and manually comparing the properties, conditions, validators, and post functions.

Any other ideas though would be most helpful!

4 answers

1 accepted

Hello Karie,

our add-on Configuration Manager for JIRA

https://marketplace.atlassian.com/manage/plugins/com.botronsoft.jira.configurationmanager

enables you to automatically deploy changes from one JIRA instance to another, so you can implement automatated roll-out of the JIRA configuration from Test or Staging server to Production.

During the deploy there is a step in the UI that visualizes all the differences between the configurations of the Testing and the Production server. The diff UI works for all configuraiton objects in JIRA including workflows. The differences displayed for workflows specifically include validators, conditions, post functions and properties. In the screenshot example below you can see the differences between two workflow are one condition, postfunction and property were added, in addition to that the add-on does impact analysis to show how many projects will be affected.

Let us know if you are interested, if you have additional questions at support@botronsoft.com. In addition we can do a Live Demo of the add-on where you will see it in action and ask any questions that you might have.

--Peter T

Hi Peter -

That looks to be a very powerful plugina and could certaintly satisfy what we are looking for. Unfortunately, for this year, it is not in our budget as it is a bit pricey at $4k for us. But, will certainly consider it for next year's budget. Thanks for the recommendation.

I used to export the workflows as XML.
Not the easiest file format to compare for humans, but it sure beats clicking through the UI.

We did try the XML export because we were wiling to try it; however, we could never get a program to open the file. We are on a mac and it wanted to open in Parallels in our Windows side, but we kept getting errors it couldn't open it.

There are specialized XML editors/viewers.
However, as XML is just plain text you can open it with any simple editor.
I use TextWrangler or Sublime Text on my Mac.

There are also specialized XML diff applications that make it easier to compare XML files.

Any update on this issue? I just joined a new company. There is v5 in production and v6 in the development server, want to know what's the differences.

Export the two workflows as XML. 

Open the XML docs in TextEdit or other text editor. 

Go to an online diff checker website such as https://www.diffchecker.com/

Copy and paste the contents of the XML docs into the two diff checker fields. 

Click Find Difference!

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