# std::filesystem::path::compare

< cpp‎ | filesystem‎ | path
 int compare( const path& p ) const noexcept; (1) (since C++17) int compare( const string_type& str ) const; int compare( std::basic_string_view str ) const; (2) (since C++17) int compare( const value_type* s ) const; (3) (since C++17)

Compares the lexical representations of the path and another path.

1) Returns a value less than, equal to or greater than 0 if the native representation of the path (native()) is respectively lexicographically less than, equal to or greater than the native representation of p (p.native()). Comparison is performed element-wise, as if by iterating both paths from begin() to end().
2) Equivalent to compare(path(str)).
3) Equivalent to compare(path(s)).

## Contents

### Parameters

 p - a path to compare to str - a string or string view representing path to compare to s - a null-terminated string representing path to compare to

### Return value

A value less than 0 if the path is lexicographically less than the given path.

A value equal to 0 if the path is lexicographically equal to the given path.

A value greater than 0 if the path is lexicographically greater than the given path.

2-3) (none)

### Notes

For two-way comparisons, binary operators may be more suitable.

### Example

#include <iostream>
#include <filesystem>
namespace fs = std::filesystem;
void demo(int rc, fs::path p1, fs::path p2) {
if(rc < 0) std::cout << p1 << " < " << p2 << '\n';
else if(rc > 0) std::cout << p1 << " > "  << p2 << '\n';
else if(rc == 0) std::cout << p1 << "==" << p2 << '\n';
}
int main() {
fs::path p1 = "/a/b/"; // as if "a/b/." for lexicographical iteration
fs::path p2 = "/a/b/#";
demo(p1.compare(p2), p1, p2);
demo(p1.compare("a/b/_"), p1, "a/b/_");
}

Output:

"/a/b/" > "/a/b/#"
"/a/b/" < "a/b/_"