How Do You Find Duplicate Files (or Compare Them)?

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How many files do you have on your computer? You probably have too many, and you probably have a lot of duplicate files. Finding those duplicate files can be a challenge without the right software. What if you need to compare files? Again, this can be a challenge. Thankfully, I have a couple of pieces of software to tell you about – one for Windows, and one for OS X.

WinMerge is an Open Source differencing and merging tool for Windows. WinMerge can compare both folders and files, presenting differences in a visual text format that is easy to understand and handle. You might need to see the difference between one revision of a document and another one. Using something like WinMerge makes this much easier on you.

Then, if you want to detect duplicate files on your Windows system, you might want to check out this donation-ware called CloneSpy. You might want to scan for duplicates to get rid of ones that you don’t need. This was a big issue back when we had tiny hard drives – like my first hard drive of 420 MB. Yes – I said MegaBytes!

For those of you on OS X, you can check out Araxix. They have two utilities that can help you out with your files. Araxis Merge allows you to compare text, images and binary files. Then you have Araxis Find Duplicate Files, which helps you find, view and manage files that have duplicate content, regardless of name.

There you go – solutions to help you manage the files on your computer, whether you’re using a Mac or a PC. If you know of other utilities that can help all of us, please let me know of them!

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