A long time ago, disk storage seemed stuck at a dollar per
megabyte. Now it’s much less than a dollar per gigabyte, and that
means most of us have nearly–or over–a terabyte of storage. It
sounds wonderful, until you realize that can translate to hundreds
of thousands, if not millions, of files, many buried deep in
obscure directories where no sane person would ever venture.
DiskAnalyzer Pro will not necessarily clean up your disk for you,
but it will give you some powerful tools to help you in the
The interface is fairly simple and easy to use, despite a bit of
clumsiness to the documentation. Specify a path (usually a drive
root) and let it run. After a surprisingly small amount of time, it
comes back with a very detailed set of reports on your hard disk.
You can view, sort, slice, and dice the results in a variety of
ways, such as finding all PDFs, or all files you haven’t accessed
in the past two years, or any other such combination. You can see
which directories are the most bloated, or which file types take up
the most space. You can do searches for duplicate files, and you
may be surprised how many unwanted copies there are of some
DiskAnalyzer Pro can delete files, but you need to select them
— for example, you might filter a list down to “All .xls files
older than one year”, then select them and delete them.
DiskAnalyzer Pro will also move the files to the recycling bin
instead of just wiping them, helping you avoid a painful “oops!”
I did experience some issues. I was unable to delete some
0-length files in a search. At times, especially when building very
long reports, DiskAnalyzer Pro appeared to be non-responsive,
though it always came back to life when it was done. Most of the
operations have either no or very limited feedback regarding the
duration of the task. You’ll see either be a dialog with no
progress bar or just a “Wait” cursor, so you can’t tell if you’ve
got a few seconds or a few hours to go. Generally, I found
DiskAnalyzer Pro to be pretty fast, especially given that the
amount of junk on my hard disks gave other programs some fits.
Last, a search is limited to a single drive at a time; you cannot
specify “All local drives” or “Drive C and D”. You can, however,
specify a subdirectory–just your Documents folder, for
In comparison to some other programs, DiskAnalyzer isn’t as
visually interesting or intuitive as the venerable SpaceMonger, but
it offers more robust analysis and filtering features. System Mechanic
offers a basic DiskAnalyzer as a subset of its general
functionality, but it is slower and much less detailed.
DiskAnalyzer Pro can be useful to a casual home or business user
if they have a lot of files, or if they want to make sure that
other users aren’t storing unwanted data in an obscure
subdirectory. It can also be very useful to an administrator who
wants to see what’s on other people’s network drives.
Note: This review addresses version 3.01 of the