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mingteck 01-25-2013 01:06 AM

Best Free Duplicate File Finder Program
Hi there,

Can anyone recommend a really good duplicate file finder program for Mac OSX 10.6.8? I've tried a few and they either don't do their job properly or are not really free (trials period, etc.). The one's I've tried include:
Magican - didn't detect duplicate files even though I know they're there
Tidy Up - 30-day trial
EasyDuplicateFinder - testing it now, seems a little buggy
DupeCheck - not working...
CleanGenius - 15-day trial

Any suggestions? Many thanks.

pendlewitch 01-25-2013 08:47 AM

You can do this in Finder for free, it's a bit time consuming but if you'll get them all eventually.

Open a new Finder window

In the search field, enter the wild card asterisk symbol *
Arrange by Size

I find it best in List view.

Prepare to be gobsmacked at how much duplication you do have.

IWT 01-25-2013 09:08 AM

Hey pendlewitch

What a great tip. So simple, but I had no idea you could do this. (I've been using the pay-for app "Twins").

Thanks very much.


pendlewitch 01-25-2013 09:24 AM

Hello mate,
Nice to hear from you and that's very kind of you.

You can do similar in iTunes as well. In the new version choose your Music library, view the songs list and go View>Show Duplicate Items

mingteck 01-28-2013 07:28 PM

Dear pendlewitch,

Thanks for the tip. I've tried it but it doesn't work for me. For a start, I'm using OSX 10.6.8. I can't upgrade as it is the office computer.

So, with that in mind:
a) when I type in * in the Search tab, it jumps to search This Mac rather than just the folder I want it to search. So, how do I assign the search to the right folder?

b) after the files are listed, there are no sizes shown. When I click on View Options, size is grayed out. I can only choose Date Modified, Date Created, Last Opened, Kind, Use relative dates & Show Icon Preview. The rest are not available. I figure that if the date created and size are the same, it's a safe bet they are duplicates. But I cannot check if I cannot show the sizes.

Can you help? What am I doing wrong? Many thanks.

pendlewitch 01-29-2013 10:56 AM

1 Attachment(s)

I honestly can't remember what the Finder looked like in Snow Leopard :) but I'm sure in SL Finder Preferences there are some advanced settings where you can alter the Perform a Search to be limited to the current folder just like in ML.

However my search is done on 'All my Files' >List View>input the wildcard asterisk and then choose the 'Perform tasks with selected item' drop down list and choose 'Arrange by'>Size.

An image of how mine looks is here but obviously it's two OS versions further on.

mingteck 01-29-2013 08:20 PM

Nope. Doesn't work with SL. The Size and Label are grayed out...

IWT 01-30-2013 04:15 AM

It's not that long since I had SL and a friend of mine still has and I can confirm that the following works:

Go to Finder > Preferences > General. Half way down the box you will see "New Finder Window Show". This has its own drop down menu and you can choose from a wide range of options where you want your searches to begin.


mingteck 01-30-2013 10:26 PM

Thanks, Ian. Good advice, except in the details - it's Finder>Peferences>Advanced. And then in the box, near the bottom, you have When performing a search: with a drop-down menu of a few options: Search This Mac, Search the Current Folder & Use the Previous Search Scope. What I want to do is Search the Current Folder, so I'm now good to go.

Many thanks. I wouldn't have searched this if not for your suggestion. But I still can't list the size of the files. Anyone who can help me sort out duplicate files on my harddrive?

pendlewitch 01-31-2013 02:19 AM

1 Attachment(s)

Finder Menu bar>View>View Options

brindlegrl 11-11-2013 02:27 PM

duplicate file finder - problems with finder in os 10.6.8
weirdly i had the size column on my macbook pro but not on my imac, both running 10.6.8/snow leopard. fooled around and noticed that the gear symbol at the top of the finder window shows "show view options" in the drop-down menu. here you can add "size" to the choices. however, this is still not showing me the size of my major files. i also have a program called Disk Inventory X which a techie friend introduced me to, and this will show you in a patchwork how your space is allocated. unfortunately it does not offer to clean things up for you. so i am back where i started and may have to pick through zillions of photos for dupes. ugh.

StarRider14 03-17-2014 07:54 AM

pendlewitch, I have laughing at myself after reading your solution...ashamed at myself! I switched to iMac last year and had just about 'unlearned' all my Windows power user knowledge, so what you suggest was something I just plain did not think about.

I reorganized the folders in Documents and in Pictures (over 100 GB of images, video, and word-processing files) recently and my sync software used with my portable drive was overwhelmed.

I ended up with over 160 GB of duplicates and MacPaw's Gemini is overwhelmed and I can't wait until they implement the fix in their next update.

What was driving me nuts was how to merge the folders, since Mavericks (OS X 10.9.2 to be exact) won't merge if their is one real duplicate file...and I have many!

Your solution is so practical and simple, I kick myself for even buying Gemini (a duplicate finder app).

God Save the British and their practical approach to Mac computing! ;)

Thanks, and you will ever be my hero on this Forum, my friend.


pendlewitch 03-17-2014 08:54 AM

StarRider14 that is a cracker of a first post ! It is most gracious of you but we just try to help whenever we can.

Now what is really good is that you searched the forums first to find answers before posting and the old sages and mods on here will be most impressed that you did.

Welcome aboard and we hope that you get involved.

P.S. Not sure about that 'practical approach' after my recent debacle with a failed Mavericks upgrade ! :):)

alexkaz 06-06-2014 04:16 AM

Duplicate files in Finder

Originally Posted by pendlewitch (Post 1490290)
You can do this in Finder for free, it's a bit time consuming but if you'll get them all eventually.

Open a new Finder window

In the search field, enter the wild card asterisk symbol *
Arrange by Size

I find it best in List view.

Prepare to be gobsmacked at how much duplication you do have.

This sounds great and i've followed through the steps in the Finder but i'm unsure what i'm looking at. Are the files displayed ALL duplicates?? (i'm on 10.7.5) :o

Sawday 06-06-2014 04:41 AM

I've been using Araxis Find Duplicate Files but have just discovered the far superior PhotoSweeper - Fast and powerful duplicate photo cleaner for the Mac. Although the Araxis program was free it only finds exact duplicates whereas the latter will find near duplicates (and look-alikes irrespective of file size) and is well worth the 'huge' investment of 6.99. Provides full control of how close a duplicate has to be to be counted and will allow fully manual, or customised auto deletion. There is a free demo too.

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