7 Top-Ranked Duplicate File Finder for Mac: 2018 Update

2018-08-22 02:02:28 / Posted by Megan Charles to Utility Follow @ Megan

We have reviewed duplicate file finder Mac for 4 years. This year, we spent over 70 hours testing and reviewing. After evaluating, we chose Cisdem Duplicate Finder for Mac as the best duplicate file finder Mac users can use. It offers an array of features that simplify the way to find and remove duplicate files on Mac. Among what we’ve tested, this duplicate file finder for Mac is the only one that finds true duplicates regardless of file name.

How we tested and pickedduplicate files on mac

During our test, to evaluate ease of use, interface and performance impact, we installed each duplicate file remover Mac on the same iMac with Retina Display 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 23GB of data stored.

According to the test, some Mac duplicate file finders outperform the other ones because of their excellent ability to thoroughly scan and remove duplicate files from hard drives and SSDs, among other criteria.

Below are the criteria we consider when we choose the best Mac duplicate file finder.

Easy to Use

Overall ease of use and intuitive interface are important criteria when it comes to defining a good duplicate finder.

Fast Scanning

A good duplicate file finder Mac software should be able to quickly and efficiently scan and locate duplicates.

Support for Various Types of File

It should be able to be powerful enough to find duplicates regardless of file type, be they photos, songs, documents, videos, etc.

Support for Photos and iTunes apps

The best duplicate file finder Mac is supposed to find duplicates from Photos (iPhoto) and iTunes libraries.

File Filtering

Allowing users to filter by file type, extension, name, size, etc. will be a plus.

File Preview

Users are allowed to easily preview files before deleting them, which is helpful especially when you want to find and delete duplicate photos on Mac.

Removal Options

Users can choose to delete duplicates permanently or to move them to trash according to their needs.

The Best Duplicate File Finder for Mac 2018

Cisdem Duplicate Finder for Mac


When it comes to best duplicate finder Mac, Cisdem Duplicate Finder for Mac is comes as the top pick for mac users, which is based on test and actual use . In addition to meeting all the criteria listed above, it also offers other convenient features such as the Ignore List, Pie Chart Overview and more.

This duplicate file finder for Mac can quickly and accurately find duplicate photos, music files, videos, documents and other types of files on Mac as well as external storage devices and get them removed with just one click. It helps Mac users get rid of duplicate files and free up disk space. 

This video takes duplicate photos for example and shows you how to use Cisdem Duplicate Finder to  effortlessly find and delete duplicate files.

Below are the features and traits that make Cisdem Duplicate Finder the best of its kind.

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 the file name. In other words, it is also able to find duplicate files with different names but same content.

By default, this app will scan and search for duplicates by content, but you can change it to “by name” in Settings by clicking the gear icon in the top-right corner of the app’s interface.

Fast scanning and high accuracy are made possible due to the advanced scanning engine and powerful algorithm.

Support for many file types and formats

With support for all common file types and their formats, this duplicate file finder is able to detect duplicate photos, audios, videos, archives and other kinds of files regardless of format. It sorts duplicate files into seven categories. For example, you can find all your duplicate photos under the Images tab.

Support for all storage devices (internal and external)

This duplicate file finder for Mac can find and delete duplicate files on your Mac’s hard drive as well as external hard drive, SD card, USB flash drive, digital camera and other devices. Just connect the device to your Mac and let this app work its magic. 

Ability to find similar images

In addition to being a duplicate photo finder, it can also work as a similar image finder and remover. In settings, you are can adjust the levels of similarity. It can be used to find similar images or resized (or rotated, etc.) images.

Support for iTunes and Photos

You can also use this duplicate file finder for Mac to easily remove iTunes duplicates and Photos duplicates. It only takes a few clicks.

Multiple removal options

In Settings, you can find three removal options: Move to Trash (by default), Remove Permanently and Move to Folder. Just choose the one that you think is the most convenient or suitable.

Ignore List & File Size Filter

In Settings, under General, you can set the maximum and minimum file size for scanning. Under Ignore List, you can exclude specific folders and files from scanning. If you add file extension(s) to the list, the scan will skip all the files of certain format(s). These features will help improve the efficiency.

Multiple preview modes

After the scan finishes, duplicate files will be listed under different tabs according to file type, along with a pie chart overview of all the duplicates. You are able to preview the files in three different modes.

Auto Select & one-click deletion

This duplicate file finder Mac will automatically select the duplicate files for you to delete. There are also other selection options such as Select Newest, Select Oldest, etc. You can also select or unselect manually. By clicking the Delete button, you will get rid of all unwanted duplicate files right away.

Below are the instructions on how to use this duplicate file finder on your Mac.

Download your free trial of Cisdem Duplicate Finder for Mac

Step 1Add hard drives or folders to scan

Download and install Cisdem Duplicate Finder for Mac. Open the app. Drag and drop the folder or hard drive into the app.

Step 2Adjust settings (optional)

As mentioned above, in settings, you can choose the removal option, exclude file folders and extensions and do more. If you are okay with the default settings, just click the Scan button and skip this step.

Step 3Preview files

After the scan is finished, you can sort files by name or size (or other values) and preview them in the window on the right side.

Step 4Delete duplicate files

Make sure that you have selected the duplicate files you don’t want to keep. Click the Delete button.

Its paid competitors

1. Gemini 2



  1. Beautiful Interface
  2. Fast scanning
  3. Detect nearly all duplicate files
  4. Preview duplicate files
  5. Allow put back from Trash Bin if delete the wrong duplicate files


  1. Process slow even crash when scan files in big size and quantity
  2. Preview runs slow, even fail to appear for quick viewing
  3. Cannot add app, such as Photos or iTunes directly for scanning
  4. Limited feature of “find similar files”
  5. Distractive and needless feature of game-style achievements 

Gemini 2 is the duplicate file deleter from MacPaw. Undoubtedly, it is the most beautiful duplicate file finder for mac on the market, stylish yet neat. It uses fast duplicate scanning algorithm to locate duplicates on your Mac computer, it does good on detecting duplicate files. In my test, Gemini 2 and Cisdem are the 2 tools can dig duplicate files in the size as close as that of truly existing duplicate files.

Same as Cisdem, Gemini supports to find similar images, but according to my test and feedback from users, this feature fall short of our expectations and needs improvements in its following upgrades. Also, this duplicate finder Mac lets you preview files before you remove them, with detailed information about the file displayed, such as size, last modified date and path.

But here is a main complaint about its “Smart Cleanup”, users who are new to a duplicate file finder are inclined to try the “Smart Cleanup”on the main interface after scanning, but later to find Gemini 2 deleted lots of their files wrongly. If these files are saved on your mac or internal drive, you are lucky to be able to restore from your Trash bin, but if your files are saved on an external storage device, that’s nightmare, you just lost them permanently. And it seems that quite a few of Gemini users have run into such a problem. Therefore, before deleting duplicates, deselect them all, preview one by one to avoid such a tragedy. 

And for users who want to scan apps, such as Photos, iTunes, Gemini won’help, you can not directly add these apps for scanning, it only allows scanning the folder where your photos or music are saved.

2. Easy Duplicate Finder



  1. Scan filter
  2. Multiple scan modes
  3. Preview duplicate files before removing
  4. Rename duplicate files
  5. Integration with cloud storage like Google Drive and Dropbox


  1. Unattractive interface (Cluttered and distractive)
  2. Cannot add app, such as Photos or iTunes directly for scanning
  3. Crash or error appears for no reason
  4. High price

Unlike other duplicate file finder for mac, Easy Duplicate Finder allows users to select folder or files for scanning, users can:

  • Include/Exclude a folder to scan
  • Include/Exclude a file type to scan
  • Set file size limits to scan

In this way, users can quick choose a folder or file to scan, also save them from the concerns on accidentally deleting some important files since they can exclude such an important folder from scanning.

In fact, Easy Duplicate Finder also provides multiple modes of duplicate scanning, but the weird thing is, the menu of scan mode lives in the top corner displayed in small font size, which can be easily overlooked by users. But this scan mode enables users to find and delete duplicates in email, contacts, iPhoto, iTunes, Photos, Google Drive, Dropbox, Outlook Mail and Outlook Contacts. Another disadvantage of its scan mode is, it respond quite slow, especially when you choose to scan iPhoto or iTunes, it takes long time to respond and navigate to choose the folder, even error messages keep appearing for no reason. 

Besides high price and unattractive interface, “Crash” is another point may put users off. Such a crash often happens when scanning, previewing or deleting duplicate files.

3. Duplicate Detective



  1. Lovely price $4.99


  1. Cannot add app, such as Photos or iTunes directly for scanning
  2. Crash for when working on large size folders

The main reason I put this on the top list is its high affordability. Of course, it works to find and deleted duplicate files, but this depends.

Duplicate Detective is a simple yet powerful duplicate file deleter which removes duplicate Mac files in a fast and easy way. This duplicate finder Mac tool filters the files by size, name, date, etc. Duplicate Detective allows users to set the minimum duplicate file size.

In term of performance, Duplicate Detective works good when you are working on small size folders or files, otherwise, the process will be quite slow or crash. Comparing with other duplicate file finder for mac, this program cannot fully dig and detect all duplicate files. In addition, the found duplicate files are only categorized in 3 major types: Images, Docs, Archives, while our needs to remove audio and video duplicate files are growing.

Its free alternatives

1. dupeGuru



  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


  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 free duplicate file finder Mac 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 macOS 10.13 High Sierra.

This free duplicate file finder Mac 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. Terminal



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


  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.

Also, GDuplicateFinder and other open source duplicate file finder Mac software are also available. GDuplicateFinder 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.

Comparison of the Best Duplicate File Finders for Mac

  Ability to find duplicate files Speed Scan iTunes & Photos/iPhoto Scan filter Preview Auto-select
Cisdem Duplicate Finder High Very fast Yes Yes Yes Yes
Gemini 2 Medium Fast Yes No Yes Yes
Easy Duplicate Finder Medium Slow No Yes Yes Yes
Duplicate Detective Medium Very fast No No Yes Yes
dupeGuru Medium Fast Yes Yes No Yes
Terminal Medium Fast No No No No
GDuplicateFinder 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 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.


Generally, a good duplicate file finder 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.

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17 Comments Leave a Reply

  • brownclark

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

    1 years ago REPLY
  • Gina

    The duplicate file finder you recommend is only for Windows.

    1 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? :)

    1 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.

    2 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".

    2 years ago REPLY
  • gabapentinea

    Regards our friends,

    2 years ago REPLY
  • angelo

    Try DuplicateFilesDeleter. Helped me few months ago.

    2 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!!!

    3 years ago REPLY