Top 8 Best Duplicate File Finder Software for Mac in 2019

2019-04-24 22:58:00 / Posted by Megan Charles to Utility Follow @ Megan

Duplicate files are of no use. They also take up precious storage space on your Mac. By using duplicate file finder software, you can easily find and remove duplicate files. Thus, you can free up Mac space and better organize your files. We have reviewed duplicate file finder software for Mac for 5 years. After testing a number of well-known Mac duplicate file finders, we have picked the best ones for you.

How we tested and picked

To evaluate usability, capability and performance of each duplicate file finder for Mac, we installed the apps on the same iMac running macOS 10.13 High Sierra. It is powered by a 3.1 GHz Intel Core i5 Quad-Core processor and has 8GB of RAM and 157GB of data stored.

What makes a good duplicate file finder for Mac? Here are the basic criteria we consider when testing and reviewing.

  • Ease of use A good duplicate file finder should be easy to use with user-friendly interface. Even new users can efficiently navigate the software and use it to look for and delete duplicate files. It should be able to provide a balance of basic and advanced options for different duplicate removal needs. In addition, high scanning speed will be a plus.
  • Capability to find duplicate files The best duplicate file finder for Mac should be able to identify duplicate copies of files by content. This way, it will accurately find true duplicate files. Also, it’s important to have support for common file types and formats such as photos, audios, documents, etc.
  • Support for iTunes and Photos iTunes and Photos can be the biggest sources of duplicate files on Mac. If a duplicate finder for Mac can’t work with the two apps, it will be of little use.
  • Scan options The best duplicate file finder should allow high degree of customization. It lets users have control over the scan process by setting options.
  • Preview It’s a must-have feature and is especially useful when it comes to removing duplicate photos.
  • Duplicate removal Features like auto-select and one-click deletion will make a duplicate file remover desirable. An option to move selected duplicate files to Trash will be useful.

The best duplicate file finder for Mac

With these criteria in mind, we picked Cisdem Duplicate Finder as the best duplicate file finder for Mac.

Cisdem Duplicate Finder for Mac can quickly scan for duplicate photos, audios, videos, documents, archives and other types of duplicates and delete them all at once. It provides an array of options for scan, preview and removal of duplicate files, along with useful features such as Auto-Select and Ignore List. You can also use it to find similar photos with adjustable similarity level.

This video takes duplicate photos for example and shows you how to use this app to effortlessly find and delete duplicate files.

Powerful algorithm

Using MD5 value check-sum algorithm and byte-by-byte comparison, this Mac duplicate file finder can identify true duplicate files regardless of filename. In other words, it is able to find duplicate files with different names but same content. Fast scanning and high accuracy are made possible due to the advanced scanning engine and powerful algorithm.

find duplicate files on Mac

By default, it will scan for duplicate files on Mac by file content. You can change the scan method to “File Name” in Settings by clicking the gear icon in the upper right corner.

select the method to scan for Mac duplicate files

Support for various file types and formats

This duplicate file finder is able to detect duplicate images, songs, videos, archives, documents and other kinds of duplicates. It sorts duplicates into seven categories. For example, you can find all your duplicate photos under the Images tab.

Support for different storage devices (internal and external)

It can find duplicate files on Ma’s internal drive, SSD, external hard drive, SD card, USB flash drive and more. You can connect an external HD to your Mac and let this app work its magic.

Support for iTunes and Photos

This duplicate file finder for Mac can efficiently remove iTunes duplicates and Photos duplicates. It only takes a few clicks.

Ability to find similar images

In addition to working as a duplicate photo finder, it can also look for similar photos. In Settings, you are can adjust the level of similarity. You can use it to find resized photos, recolored photos and other types of similar photos.

measure similarity between images

Useful scan options

Before scan, you choose scan method, adjust image similarity level and set the maximum and minimum file size for scanning. Under Ignore List, you can exclude folders and extensions from scanning. If you add a file extension to the list, the scan will skip all the files in this format.

exclude folders or file types when looking for duplicates

3 preview modes allowing side-by-side preview

Once the scan is finished, groups of duplicates will be listed under different tabs based on file type. You can also find a pie chart overview of all duplicates. You can sort duplicates (by name, size and file type) and search among them. There are three preview modes including side-by-side preview, allowing you to easily view and compare pictures, audios, videos, documents and spreadsheets.

Multiple selection methods including Auto-Select

The best duplicate file finder for Mac will automatically select duplicate copies for you to delete. There are other selection options such as Select Newest and Select Oldest. There are four more options when it comes similar photos. You can also select or unselect manually.

Easy and safe removal of duplicates

By clicking Delete, you can get rid of duplicate files all at once. There are three removal options. You can choose to move selected duplicates to Trash, delete them permanently, or move them to a folder of your choice. It’s possible to easily recover deleted files.

Lifetime free upgrades

Users don’t need to pay to upgrade and enjoy the improvements and new features the newer versions have to offer. Also, free trial is available.

How to find and delete duplicate files on Mac in 3 easy steps

This is a basic how-to guide. To make the most of the best duplicate file finder for Mac, please read the review above.

Step 1Add hard drives or folders to scan

Download and install Cisdem Duplicate Finder for Mac. Open it. Drag folders or drives into the app.

Step 2Scan for duplicates files

Click the gear icon to customize settings if needed. Click Scan. The Mac duplicate file finder will start scanning for duplicates based on default or custom settings.

scan for duplicates files on macOS

Step 3Preview

Once the scan finishes, you can sort files and preview them in the preview window. You can zoom in/out for better viewing and comparing.

Step 4Delete duplicate files

Make sure that the unwanted duplicate copies are selected. Click Delete.

Its paid competitors

There are also other great duplicate file finders for Mac users to choose from.

1. Gemini 2

 

Pros:

  1. Impressively good-looking user interface which is also easy to use
  2. Good at finding various types of duplicates such as duplicate pictures
  3. Fast scanning
  4. Supports iTunes and Photos
  5. Offers multiple scan filtering options and removal methods
  6. Can remove duplicates in a safe manner by moving them to Trash

Cons:

  1. Memory hungry
  2. The preview feature is not handy enough
  3. Smart Cleanup may cause wrong deletion
  4. A bit costly

preview

Gemini 2 is a macOS-only duplicate finder and remover developed by MacPaw. It is undoubtedly the most good-looking duplicate file finder available for Mac thanks to its beautiful user interface. Using “unique sophisticated algorithms”, Gemini 2 does a good job of detecting duplicate files on Mac. The app supports common file types such as images, music files and documents. Just like the best duplicate file finder for Mac, this app can find similar photos. It also supports removing duplicates from iTunes and Photos.

As one of the top duplicate file finder software for Mac, it provides multiple scan filtering and removal options, allowing users to control how it looks for and remove duplicates. By default, it will automatically select duplicate copies for deletion, which is convenient. In addition, there are some useful minor features. Once the scan is completed, if you quit the app without handling duplicates, it will automatically save and restore the scanning result.

According to our test, the preview function needs improvement. Users can switch between list view and grid view, but neither mode is handy enough for a quick and easy preview and comparison, especially when it comes to previewing duplicate photos. Also, it occasionally fails to preview some PNG images.

One of the main complaints from users is the Smart Cleanup feature. After the scan process, the Smart Cleanup button will show up. Some users clicked the button only to find the app wrongly deleting files. For local files, you are able to restore them from Trash. If the files are deleted from an external storage device, they will be gone for good. To avoid such an issue, do preview before you click the Delete button.

This duplicate file finder for Mac is available as a yearly subscription, and users have to pay every year to continue using it. The price of $19.95 is a bit expensive considering the fact.

2. Easy Duplicate Finder

 

Pros

  1. Can find duplicate audios, videos, pictures and more
  2. Multiple easy-to-set settings for scan
  3. Multiple scan modes
  4. Lets users easily preview duplicates
  5. Ability to search for duplicates in Google Drive and Dropbox
  6. Automatically marks files for deletion

Cons

  1. Expensive, costing $39.95 for one-year subscription
  2. Slow scanning
  3. Some scan modes such as iTunes Scan and Email Mode are actually not helpful

view and preview duplicates

This duplicate file finder for Mac uses SHA256 checksum and byte-by-byte comparison to find duplicate images, videos, music files and more. The interface is simple and easy to understand. Even those who are new to duplicate file finder software can easily navigate and use it.

You can easily specify file types and size for scan. When scanning your entire Mac for duplicates, you can exclude folders if needed. For quick removal, you can click the Remove All Now option, but it’s recommended to check out and preview the found duplicates before removal. This Mac duplicate file finder will list groups of duplicates and categorize them by type. With the built-in preview feature, you can view and compare files without having to open them. There are several rules to batch mark duplicate copies. In addition, as one of the best duplicate file finder for Mac, it can automatically select files for deletion. One advantage of this app is that it allows you to scan Google Drive and Dropbox, which requires decent Internet connection and could take hours.

In our tests, its scan speed was about three times lower than that of the two apps mentioned above. Easy Duplicate Finder is versatile and powerful, even enabling users to scan for duplicate contacts and emails. However, use caution when you use such features. It’s not able to find duplicate contacts or emails with high accuracy. For the sake of data safety, don’t delete the detected duplicates without checking them out. The iTunes Scan mode and Photos Scan mode don’t work for some users.

3. Tidy Up

 

Pros:

  1. Two scan modes: Simple mode and Advanced mode
  2. Offers an array of scan criteria
  3. Supports various file types and formats
  4. Lets users easily preview duplicates before deletion
  5. Multiple sorting options and preview modes

Cons:

  1. Complex to use
  2. Not very user-friendly interface
  3. A bit costly
  4. Popup reminder constantly asking users to upgrade to new version

use simple mode to scan for duplicate files

When compared with the best Mac duplicate file finder, its scanning speed is a bit slow and the interface is not user-friendly. That being said, Tidy Up is a decent duplicate file finder and remover. Users can choose between two scan modes: Simple mode (default) and Advanced one. It can find duplicates of a variety of types such as photos, music and packages. If you have no idea how to use this app, the wizard can help you out.

In Simple mode, you can find an array of search criteria for looking for duplicate images, music files, etc. You can select or unselect based on your need. The Advanced mode allows more customization and is more complicated to use. Once the scan finishes, it will list the detected duplicate files. You can sort them by filename or size. There are four preview modes, allowing you to conveniently check out duplicates.

This duplicate file finder for Mac is good at looking for duplicates with high accuracy and is reliable to use. However, the interface is not intuitive, especially when it comes to scan filtering. New users will have to spend time getting familiar with how to use the app.

4. Duplicate Detective

 

Pros

  1. Supports various file types
  2. Useful preview feature
  3. Allows users to create an alias when deleting duplicates
  4. Lovely price of $4.99

Cons

  1. Very slow scanning
  2. Limited filtering, view and removal options
  3. Sometimes crashes

duplicate file finder for Mac

Duplicate Detective looks less sophisticated than the best duplicate file finder for Mac due to its simple unattractive interface. It actually excels at identifying duplicates on Mac. It supports image files, audios, documents and some other types.

In Preferences, you can choose removal method, set Auto Select setting, specify file size and exclude file extensions or folders. After scanning, this Mac duplicate finder and remover will list all the spotted duplicates. The preview window is big enough for comfort viewing. You can easily preview images, videos, PDF files and documents without problem. However, there is only one preview mode, and you can’t view and compare files side by side. You can set the tool to automatically select all the oldest or newest copies in each duplicate group.

When it comes to the scan speed, this duplicate file finder is even slower than Easy Duplicate Finder. So it won’t work well with large file collections.


The best free duplicate file finders for Mac

1. dupeGuru

 

Pros:

  1. Free to use
  2. Easy to use with a simple interface
  3. 2 scan types allowing users to scan by filename or by content
  4. Allows users to exclude files by file size
  5. Easily scan iTunes libraries
  6. 2 removal options
  7. Supports PSD files

Cons:

  1. Slow scan when compare with paid duplicate file finders for Mac
  2. Sometimes crashes when scanning an entire hard drive
  3. No side-by-side preview available
  4. Users need to manually select duplicate files before deleting
  5. Discontinued and not maintained any more

What is the best duplicate file finder for Mac freeware users can use? dupeGuru is the one we picked. It is a cross-platform duplicate file remover for you to find duplicate files on Mac and manage them. There is something that you should know about this app. dupeGuru has been discontinued since 2016. It is not maintained. There is little chance of any future update for the latest or upcoming macOS versions. Currently it doesn’t support High Sierra and the latest macOS 10.14 Mojave.

This freeware app can find duplicate files and duplicate photos, documents and audios. In the test, this app found 418 duplicates, whereas Cisdem Duplicate Finder found 1162 duplicate files. After dupeGuru finishes scanning, you can delete selected duplicates to Trash or move them to a specific folder.

2. Araxis Find Duplicate Files

 

Pros:

  1. Freeware
  2. Allows users to filter by file type before scan
  3. Various supported formats
  4. Multiple selection and removal options
  5. Auto-selects duplicates

Cons:

  1. Hasn’t been updated since 2013
  2. Not very helpful built-in preview feature
  3. Can’t find resized images

scan, preview and remove duplicate copies

This free duplicate file finder for Mac is easy to use and supports a variety of formats just like its paid counterparts. You can set it to scan selected folders for all duplicates or for certain type(s) of duplicates such as such as images, movies, music files, PDF files, presentations and documents. It will list all found duplicates in a window, allowing you to sort them by name, format or size. You can zoom in/out in the preview window, but the preview is still not helpful with some images. This freeware app can automatically select duplicate items excluding the first occurrence of each item. You can choose to move selected unwanted files to Trash or to a folder.

Just as with many freeware apps, this one hasn’t been updated for several years, so there could be compatibility issues. Another drawback is that this duplicate file finder can’t find all duplicates in selected folders. In the test, there were still hundreds of duplicate files that were missed. It can find most duplicates, but the selection and deletion functionalities are not very reliable. You need to be cautious with the removal.

3. Terminal

 

Pros:

  1. Free to use
  2. No need to download or install third-party software

Cons:

  1. Can’t find all duplicate files
  2. You still need to manually delete duplicate files

Terminal is the terminal emulator built-in to macOS. It’s possible to find duplicate files Mac with Terminal, but it’s recommended not to use this method if you are not familiar with Terminal. Below is how it works.

Step 1. Go to Finder > Go > Utility. Launch Terminal.

Step 2. Use the cd command to change to the folder you want to scan. For example, if you want to find the duplicates files in your Videos folder, just type cd ~/Videos and press Enter.

Step 3. Type the command: find . -size 20 \! -type d -exec cksum {} \; | sort | tee /tmp/f.tmp | cut -f 1,2 -d ' ' | uniq -d | grep -hif – /tmp/f.tmp > duplicates.txt. Press Enter.

Open the file duplicates.txt where you will find a list of duplicate files on your Mac. You can manually find and delete them.

Open source duplicate file finders for Mac are also available. GDuplicateFinder, for example, is made to find and remove duplicates. You can use it to scan your files and compare them in search for the duplicate ones. It allows you to stop, resume and save the scanning and searching, which is convenient. Users can also specify the size range of the duplicate files to be found.


Comparison of the Best Duplicate File Finder Mac Software

  Price Ability to find duplicate files Speed Scan iTunes & Photos/iPhoto Scan filter Preview Auto-select
Cisdem Duplicate Finder $29.99 for lifetime license High Very fast Yes Yes Yes Yes
Gemini 2 $19.95 for 1-year subscription High Very fast Yes Yes Yes Yes
Easy Duplicate Finder $39.95 High Slow No Yes Yes Yes
Tidy Up $34.99 Medium Slow Yes Yes Yes No
Duplicate Detective $4.99 Medium Very slow No Yes Yes Yes
dupeGuru Free Medium Fast Yes Yes No Yes
Araxis Find Duplicate Files Free Medium Slow No No No Yes
Terminal Free Medium Fast No No No No


Why do You Have Duplicates on Your Mac?

It is almost inevitable to have duplicate files on our Mac hard drives. Duplicate photos, duplicate music files and other types of files are most of the time useless, and they take up space on your Mac. Why are they there?

Duplicate files can occur due to various of reasons. It’s very common that we have downloaded a file and forgotten it is there, and we download it again. When we move files from one place to somewhere else on our Mac, sometimes we use copying and pasting rather than cutting and pasting, which results in one or multiple copies of certain files. Duplicate files can also occur during the processes of transferring files back and forth Mac and external devices such as mobile devices, storage devices, digital cameras and so on.

There are also other reasons, but the important thing to know is that you can easily and efficiently remove them with the help of the best duplicate file finder Mac apps. It’s a great way to free up Mac space, speed up your computer and get your file more organized.


Conclusion

Generally, a good duplicate file finder for Mac can search for files with the same name, the same size, and/or the exact same contents. It helps you examine each file and decide which one to keep. It can offer flexible settings on certain file types, so you can concentrate on the more wasteful redundancy. Most of all, it should be easy to use with consistent performance. Taken together, Cisdem Duplicate Finder is undoubtedly your best choice to find duplicate files on Mac.

Most Popular Downloads

New

Data Recovery Mac

Safe & affordable data recovery software for Mac.

49.99 69.99
Learn More
Hot

Contact Manager Mac

The Mac contact manager which keep contacts updated and clean

29.99 39.99
Learn More

Hot Articles

  • The Complete Guide on Using iPhoto Library Manager on Mac

    Do you really know what is iPhoto Library Manager? What you can do with the help of iPhoto Library Manger? Is it safe for you to use? If you don’t know, don’t be panic. Here is the complete guide on using iPhoto Library Manager for Mac users.

  • Best Duplicate Video Finders for Mac and Windows in 2019

    It's surprising how much disk space duplicated files such as music, videos and photos can take. A duplicate video can take up much more space than a duplicate music or photo, a 5-minute video in .flv format takes up about 12MB. So removing these duplicate videos can free up more space on Mac.

  • Top 7 Best Duplicate Photo Finders for Mac 2019: Delete Duplicate Photos in Minutes!

    It is common knowledge that most of the storage space in an average user’s Mac is used up by such duplicate photos and images. Removing duplicate photos manually is time consuming and annoying task. How to easily and quickly find and delete those same pictures and photos? This article will recommend you top five duplicate photo cleaner and make comparison to decide which one is the best choice for you.

17 Comments Leave a Reply

  • brownclark

    Having trouble with duplicate files? just use "DuplicateFilesDeleter program"

    2 years ago REPLY
  • Gina

    The duplicate file finder you recommend is only for Windows.

    2 years ago REPLY
  • M. Razali

    In so far tried Cisdem DuplicateFinder and giving it a 5*. Except I was using an unregistered version of the sofeware and thus I can't get it to delete the duplicates. Any chance of a discount coupon? :)

    2 years ago REPLY
  • Vonnegut

    5 out of 5 stars for this only program Cisdem DuplicateFinder. I used this duplicate file finder for years. Others are definitely not recommended.

    2 years ago REPLY
  • Rosa Reyes

    Hi, Vonnegut, thank you for the support of our product Cisdem DuplicateFinder. We will keep up the good work.

    2 years ago REPLY
  • Helen Krieger

    Downloaded the free trial, but though it will locate duplicates it won't let you delete the extra ones...so really the free trial is more of a preview I guess.

    2 years ago REPLY
  • Rosa Reyes

    Hi, Helen Krieger, free trial version of many duplicate file finder only allows you to find duplicate files; if you want to delete them, you have to buy.

    2 years ago REPLY
  • natamolestr

    Very well written! I will immediately seize your rss as I can’t find your e-mail subscription link or newsletter service. Do you’ve any? Kindly permit me recognize so that I may subscribe.

    3 years ago REPLY
  • Rosa Reyes

    You can subscribe by clicking "SUBSCRIBE" on the lowest right corner of the page and inputting your email address, then clicking "Subscribe".

    3 years ago REPLY
  • gabapentinea

    Regards our friends,

    3 years ago REPLY
  • angelo

    Try DuplicateFilesDeleter. Helped me few months ago.

    3 years ago REPLY
  • pachy

    where can I find a mac version?

    2 years ago REPLY
  • Nina

    As far as i know, this duplicate file finder has no mac version, so I tried Cisdem duplicate finder on my macbook pro, it worked perfectly.

    2 years ago REPLY
  • kevinm.lee123@hotmail.com

    Thank you for writing this useful article. I tried Cisdem DuplicateFinder, it really found all of the duplicate files on my Mac. It saved my hard disk storage.

    3 years ago REPLY
  • Richard90

    Cisdem DuplicateFinder is really the best solution. I used it to find duplicate files on my Mac, it did a good job. I like it. Thank you, writer.

    3 years ago REPLY
  • Chris

    Useful article, useful tool. I tried the first one as it seemed better than others. Actually, it did well.

    3 years ago REPLY
  • Barbara123

    Writer recommended so many duplicate finders, I tried the first one. It was great!!! Thank you!!!

    4 years ago REPLY