Tech

4 applications to remove duplicate files

In recent times we have experienced a relative setback in terms of the amount of storage space. The SSDwhich are still more expensive than hard drives, have taken care of slow down, and not a little, the expansion of the amount of data storage present by default on computers.

But, despite the fact that SSDs have meant a relative reduction in storage capacity, they have ended up prevailing because they are much faster and, according to the experience of some and certain studies, more durable. On the other hand, the reality is that hard drives have been one of the main bottlenecks in computers for a long time, so, from certain points of view, it can even be said that SSDs have arrived late.

Although SSDs are still more expensive than hard drives, today their prices are affordable enough to have 1 terabyte of storage in that format. This amount has become the minimum necessary if you don’t want to be short of space and dedicate yourself to things that take up a lot of disk space, such as the gaming (recent triple-A titles run to tens of gigabytes or even over 100) and professional video editing. If you want to have more than 1 terabyte of storage, unless you have a large budget, today many still use hard drives, although they are usually used together with an SSD that is responsible for storing the operating system and some critical files.

With the consolidation of SSDs and software taking up more and more disk space, keeping under control the amount of space used can become important for an average userso the use of tools to detect duplicate files comes in handy to recover that space that has been lost uselessly.

Sometimes a file is replicated in various subdirectories because it is a resource that is reused frequently. However, especially if the file is large and you forget to delete copies that are no longer useful, you may find that you have wasted a lot of space. In those situations it doesn’t hurt resort to a tool to detect and delete duplicate files.

Of course, before starting to mention tools, four in total in this article, we want to warn you that, if a duplicate file is in the system folders or its origin is not clear, it is prudent not to carry out the elimination. Basically, the border can be set to the root of the user’s personal folder, located at C:\Users\“Nombre del usuario”. Any file that is at a higher level should not be deleted in order to preserve the integrity of the system.

Duplicate Cleaner Pro

Duplicate Cleaner Pro It is one of the best known tools within its segment. Its description already leaves little to the imagination, but it is important to bear in mind that it is a paid application that allows, as a trial, to delete a maximum of 15 files for free. After that, the user will have to go through the checkout, so it is good to select the context on which you want to test the application to see if it convinces you or not.

As we see, his interface is quite simple and self-explanatory. It allows you to protect and exclude folders from searches and indicates the number of times a file is repeated and how much space would be gained by deleting its copies. It is also capable of scanning Google Drive, Dropbox, SmartScan mobile and delete empty folders, but we recommend limiting the use of the application to files located in the user’s personal folder in the operating system to avoid unpleasantness.

Auslogics Duplicate File Finder

Another tool available to remove duplicate files is Auslogics Duplicate File Finder. Compared to the previous one, this one can be a bit more finicky when it comes to setting up the search, since by default it ignores files that share the creation date. If one is not attentive to this detail, it is possible to see that it does not find the duplicates of the file that the user wants to delete.

On the other hand, Auslogics Duplicate File Finder offers in the installation process the possibility of adding a trial version of the Auslogics driver updater, so basically we find ourselves with the typical tool that aims to help the user when to maintain the system. However, it is always better to take these types of tools with tweezers and, if you do use them, only use those parts that are useful and do not safely pose a risk to the integrity of the operating system.

To make a complete search of all personal files, the user must uncheck the corresponding boxes to expand the radius, with special mention of the aforementioned date of creation.. After configuring the search, the user should see that the tool works correctly.

The Auslogics Duplicate File Finder application offers features such as cleaning drives, optimizing drives, recovery of lost files, the aforementioned driver update and possibilities to improve PC performance. When the user clicks on those options, he will be directed to download the corresponding Auslogics application, which he has to pay for, but once again, we insist on taking these types of tools with great caution and, if one is not sure of what it does, better just use search. The company’s catalog is even broader, but here we focus on what interests us.

SearchMyFiles

This tool, coming from NirSoft, is a portable application with a slightly old-fashioned appearance, but for searching it is possibly the most powerful of all the ones mentioned in this list. Of course, the price of this power is that it is more complicated to use, and may require certain knowledge of the command line or regular expressions to fully understand it.

SearchMyFiles is not aimed at finding duplicate files, but any that is within the directory established by the user. Some criteria are supported, such as the date of creation, modification and access; attributes such as whether it is a system file, read-only, or hidden; and allows you to play with the wildcard as padding for any set of characters. For example, if the user enters *.png in the “Files Wildcard” field, the tool will search for any file whose name ends in “.png”, which should finally translate into finding all the images in PNG format within the indicated directory.

As we have already said before, we recommend setting the starting point in the user’s root folder in order to avoid sensitive system files, although that does not mean that care should not be taken when handling personal files, more so if we are talking about a computer that is being used for professional or management purposes.

After performing the search, the user can see the files that have the same name to proceed to delete the duplicates that he is not interested in keeping, but first it is better to look at the size and location to ensure that he deletes the correct ones.

CCleaner

And we close the list with a tool that is not even recommended: CCleaner. In addition to the controversial and inadvisable registry cleaning, it also has a duplicate file search engine, which needs to be adjusted a bit to limit the search to the user’s folder. To find it you have to follow the path Tools > Duplicate Finder.

Once inside, his thing is to unmark C:\*.* to avoid searching for duplicate system files. Then click on the “Add” button to select the user’s personal folder (C:\Users\“Nombre del usuario” o Desktop > “Username”, Guillermo Puertas in our case) as a starting point and you have to make sure you have “Include files and subfolders” selected in the Options dropdown.

Finding duplicate files with CCleaner

After clicking on the “OK” button to finish configuring the search, you have to click with the main mouse button on “Search”. The user will be redirected to the results, where he will be able to see the duplicate files inside his own folder.

Delete duplicate files with CCleaner

conclusion

As we can see, the user has at his disposal tools that contribute, directly or indirectly, to the elimination of duplicate files that he has in his personal folder. Although the aforementioned applications are also capable of finding duplicate files in directories belonging to the system, we once again recommend not proceeding to eliminate them (or search for them) to avoid compromising the operating system.

Thanks to SSDs, computers with 256GB of data storage or less are still very common, so tools that allow you to find duplicate files are something that is still useful, but as long as you are clear about what you are doing.

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