Table of Contents
The KIO library from Frameworks™ supports network transparency via KIO-slaves. KDiff3 uses this for reading input files and for scanning folders. This means that you can specify files and folders on local and remote resources via URLs.
kdiff3 test.cpp ftp://ftp.faraway.org/test.cpp kdiff3 tar:/home/hacker/archive.tar.gz/folder ./folder
The first line compares a local file with a file on an FTP server. The second line compares a folder within an compressed archive with a local folder.
Other KIO-slaves that are interesting are:
Files from the WWW (http:),
Files from the FTP (ftp:),
Encrypted file transfer (fish:, sftp:),
Windows® resources (smb:),
Local files (file:),
Other things that are possible, but probably less useful are:
An URL has a different syntax compared with paths for local files and folders. Some things should be considered:
A path can be relative and can contain "." or "..". This is not possible for URLs which are always absolute.
Special characters must be written with "escaping". ("
#" -> "
%23", space ->"
%20", etc.) E.g. a file with the name "
#" would have the URL "file:/
When URLs don't work as expected, try to open them in Konqueror first.
Network transparency has one drawback: Not all resources have the same capabilities.
Sometimes this is due to the file system of the server, sometimes due to the protocol. Here is a short list of restrictions:
Sometimes there is no support for links.
Or there is no way to distinguish if a link points to a file or a folder; always assuming a file. (ftp:, sftp:).
Can't always determine the filesize.
Limited support for permissions.
No possibility to modify permissions or modification time, so permissions or time of a copy will differ from the original. (See the Trust the size (unsafe) option.) (To modify permissions or modification time is only possible for local files.)