Product Updates

Introducing Salto’s admin friendly compare and deploy solution

Written by
Guy Kremnitzer
February 8, 2023
min read

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The only tool that truly understands the meaning of changes

We are excited to announce that we are extending our gorgeous, never-before-seen metadata visualization into our configuration comparison features, allowing admins to:

  1. Compare environments to easily see the differences and understand them
  2. Compare two metadata elements of the same type

Salto’s XML-free compare solution relies on our ability to understand the metadata and the business logic it conveys, rather than just comparing strings—which means we can organize and display the metadata differences in a simple, easy-to-read format.

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Environment comparison made simple

  • Easily spot metadata differences - When comparing two orgs or metadata items, Salto will clearly mark the specific locations where metadata differences are found, eliminating the need to manually browse through elements or large XML files while allowing you to browse and jump between the diffs
  • Explore changed elements - Salto organizes your metadata elements in an intuitive and logical way with clear names and categories, making it simple for you to navigate and understand the most complex elements.
  • Clear, color-based diff highlights - Salto uses colors and icons to highlight new additions, deletions, and modifications, providing users with a comprehensive understanding of the changes that have been made.
  • Find everything in your metadata and deep dive as needed - Salto’s search feature will help you find specific values or attributes that may be hiding in your more complex elements. If you need to deep-dive into a specific area, you can also easily expand and collapse it as needed.
  • Understand the full story of the change - Salto presents the changes in their proper context, telling the true story of the logical change so you can actually understand the impact of the business processes.

Salto's one of a kind no-XML compare tool is a game-changer for Salesforce admins. With its ability to truly understand metadata, as opposed to just comparing strings, Salto offers an intuitive and easy-to-use solution for comparing metadata. This means that Salesforce admins no longer have to waste time and effort manually going through large files to catch differences, as Salto clearly marks the exact areas where changes have occurred. Additionally, Salto's logical and intuitive organization of metadata elements makes it simple for Salesforce admins to navigate and understand even the most complex elements. This is especially useful for admins as it enables them to easily identify and troubleshoot issues, and also accelerate the deployment process. With Salto, Salesforce admins can save time and effort, while ensuring accuracy and completeness in their work.

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Environment comparison - main use cases

Whether you’re planning a deployment, cleaning up your Org, or making sure your sandbox is ready for a new project, metadata compare tools are useful for Salesforce admins at all levels.

Salesforce org comparison is a process of evaluating the differences between two Salesforce environments, or orgs, to understand how they are configured and customized.

Environment comparison is an essential part of our deployment process. Without it, we would be unable to properly assess the potential impacts of our changes on production. By comparing orgs, we can verify the accuracy of our changes and prevent the overwriting of important data. In short, Salesforce org comparison is a crucial aspect of our process.

This process can be useful in additional situations, including:

  1. Aligning a sandbox to a higher environment: This involves copying configuration changes from a higher environment (such as production) to a lower environment (such as a sandbox) to test and validate new updates and features. To make this process smoother, it is recommended to use a comparison tool to easily identify differences between two environments and quickly apply changes to align them.
  2. Merging two orgs: If you are consolidating two separate Salesforce instances into a single org, you will need to compare the orgs to ensure that all metadata and customizations are migrated properly.
  3. Migrating to a new org: If you are moving from an older org to a new one, you may want to compare the two orgs to ensure that all necessary configurations are carried over.
  4. Upgrading: When you upgrade to a new Salesforce release, you may want to compare your org to the previous version to understand the changes that were made and ensure that your customizations are still valid.
  5. Auditing: You may want to compare two orgs as part of an audit to ensure that one org is configured in compliance with company policies or industry regulations.

The Challenges of Salesforce Org Comparison

Salesforce admins often face challenges when comparing two orgs. One common challenge is the sheer amount of metadata that needs to be compared. Salesforce orgs can contain hundreds or even thousands of custom objects, fields, workflows, and other elements, making it difficult to identify and understand the differences between the two orgs.

Another challenge is the complexity of Salesforce configurations. Salesforce offers a wide range of features and customization options, and it can be difficult for admins to understand how all of these elements fit together and how they may be impacted by changes in one org.

In addition, Salesforce admins may also face challenges when trying to extract the metadata from the orgs. The metadata API can be difficult to use, and it may be necessary to write custom scripts or use third-party tools to retrieve the metadata in a usable format.

One common method for comparing Salesforce orgs is to use the metadata API to retrieve XML files that represent the metadata of each org. These XML files can then be compared using a tool such as Visual Studio Code. However, this method isn’t perfect;

  • XML files can be large and unwieldy, making it difficult to understand the differences between the orgs.
  • XML files do not include certain types of metadata, such as Apex code, which mean that you may miss important differences between the orgs.

These tools are based on comparing strings, rather than understanding the meaning or structure of the XML. As a result, these tools simply perform a "dry comparison" of the strings, and may not always accurately identify meaningful changes between the two orgs.

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Written by
Guy Kremnitzer

Guy is a seasoned front-end developer with a passion for delivering exceptional user experiences. Guy blends technical expertise with a creative touch to build engaging interfaces for complex products. Guy is also a founding member of Salto’s musical ensemble, playing both piano and guitar.

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