GrandPerspective: a visual file space viewer for Mac

I take a lot of photos, take some occasional movies, have a bunch of music, download a lot of apps, buy a lot of PDF books and generally just eat up my hard drive space constantly. Every once in a while I get down to, like, 30M free and suddenly remember to move all my photos and videos off to my external storage. Sometimes, I can’t figure out where all the space is being used though.

Yesterday I wondered (twittered) whether there was a visual disk viewer that would show me where all my space was being held hostage. It turns out there is a great tool for Mac called GrandPerspective.

GrandPerspective graphical view of my disk usage
That giant yellow/green block in the middle? That's my Windows 7 virtual machine. Keep. (grumble, grumble)

When I saw the first screenshot on the website, I was ready to look for another option. But, I had second thoughts and tried it out. I’m glad I did. It does exactly what I want.

The blocks are relative graphical representations of the sizes of files withing a folder. Things within subfolders are grouped together. Otherwise, it’s just all packed together.

I just look for the largest blocks, and choose “Reveal in Finder”. Then I evaluate the files, where and what they are. Delete? Move? Keep?

It’s pretty slick.

The only weird thing is, when it starts, it appears in the dock but with no window. The menu bar is there though. You have to choose which folder to scan before it displays a window. Once you know that, it’s a cinch to use.

More information:

Author: eric

Eric Holsinger is a software professional and photography enthusiast in Southern Maine.

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