Sourcetree conflict resolution: Xcode FileMerge or Araxis Merge

When resolving conflicts, I've set merge to FileMerge and Araxis Merge (under preferences>diff) to see how they work. When using FileMerge, the conflict resolution involves two files, but Araxis Merge [2012 pro eval] displays three. It is a little irritating because the third file, .BASE, doesn't seem necessary and in fact complicates the resolution process. I would like to use Araxis Merge.

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Merging a conflict always involves at least 3 files:

  1. The version on your own branch you had before you started merging
  2. The version from the other branch that you want to merge together
  3. The final merged version

In FileMerge, you see the first two at the top of the screen, and the last one at the bottom.

However, some merge tools also support using the common ancestor of both sides of the merge, which can assist it (and you) in figuring out what to do with a conflict. Araxis is one of those tools, which is why it has an extra BASE file displayed.

AFter some fiddling, I decided that I needed to turn off a rule allowing Araxis Merge to interpret the xib file as xml and applying fancy xml formatting, while at the same time not interpreting the base file the same way because of the conflict markers added to the file. Now they can be compared visually. And your answer clarified the differences between the FileMerge and Araxis Merge display styles. Thanks!

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