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What's eating up your hard drive? These 5 utilities tell all

Michael Simon | Nov. 13, 2014
No matter how slimmed down you believe your Mac's hard drive to be there are likely large files consuming space you could use for better things. These tools ferret out those files.

Daisy Disk took only a few extra seconds longer to scan my drive than the other apps I tested, but the results made it seem like it took far longer. Not only will you get a gorgeous graphical interface with an intricate map of your drive, it also provides a sidebar that offers a description of each colored chunk. It might not seem like a major advantage, but as you move around the various segments, the continuously changing sidebar adds a familiar navigational element that makes it easy to locate large files that may be clogging your drive.

As you root around, any files that you want to delete or transfer can be collected for later dispersal, but Daisy Disk isn't just limited to scanning whole disks. Local folders can be dropped onto its window to create quick shortcuts to directories that need constant cleaning.

Which should I get?
If you're looking for full-fledged disk inspector, Daisy Disk is an easy recommendation. There was nothing about Disk Graph or Disk Inspector that I didn't like, but Daisy Disk puts it all together better, combining good looks and intuition into a superior package. Its mix of text and visuals made it a pleasure to use, especially when hunting for specific files. And while each of its peers mapped an old OS X disk installation file that was eating up 5GB of space, only Daisy Disk brought it to my attention.

For quickly clearing out common caches and app logs, Disk App is the way to go. Its pie chart-inspired interface brings an elegance and ease of use that's hard to beat, and it's even quicker than running maintenance tasks using Cocktail or Onyx. In fact, disk-cleaning junkies might want to consider it as a companion to Daisy Disk, since you'll need to do some digging to get to the folders Disk App instantly brings up.


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