Sunday, July 19, 2009

Large drives; larger problems

Computer drives are getting cheaper for more; in fact you can buy a 1 terrabyte drive for about the same cost of a night at the movies. It's easy to simply add files without thinking since there is so much space. I find myself wondering where all that space has gone.

I've been using FolderSizes to manage my various disks and really like it. This one is a commercial product - I tried some of the freebies and this case you seem to get what you pay for. The Pro is $50 and the personal version $25. Personally I've found it well worth the cost.

The main feature that I like is its most direct - it shows you how much crap you have in your folders, organized by size. This is where I find the most surprises when I first scan a drive. It's when I remember "temporarily" backing up all those files to that folder that I forgot to remove when done.
The Pro version can be used to monitor network drives and include handy features like scheduling to scan drives during off-time. A nice feature is that when you find a folder that has files of interest, you can delete them right from the FolderSizes interface; I don't usually do it this way because it wants to move the files to the recycle bin (there might be a way to change that - haven't looked.) But what's nice is you can also pop up a windows explorer window with a right click menu.

It might be trivial, but one of the best features about it is that it feels and looks professional. It is quick, does stuff in the background has a nice layout and nice set of features and is stable. Some of the free ones felt clunkie, crashed and were slow. This one looks like a great software package written by a single programmer, but done well.

Update: Ok, not a single developer working out his garage any more. Seems business is good and according to Mark Richards the chief nerd they now employ a number of developers to work their magic.

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