GrandPerspective: A colorful (and FREE) way to reclaim hard drive space

Grand Perspective

Earlier today I Tweeted a pic of what my hard drive looks like through the eyes of GrandPerspective, a free utility that creates a graphical representation of the sizes of the files and folders on your Mac. A couple people asked me what it was, so I figured I’d do a quick post about it.

Basically, you tell GP a location to scan on your hard drive (I just chose the whole drive) and it will graphically break down the files into size-relative blocks, showing you which files are the real space hogs on your system (scanning approximately 180,000 folders takes about 3 minutes on my MBP). Just hover your mouse over a block to see the file name and path. There is not a one-step delete from within the app (although there IS a grayed-out delete button in the interface, so maybe the functionality is coming). However, I prefer the manual way anyway, for safety’s sake. If you find something you know you don’t want sitting on your drive anymore, simply right-click on it, hit REVEAL IN FINDER, and then delete it manually.

I found a 20 GB MKV file from an old Blu-ray rip I forgot to delete using GrandPerspective, and while true Apple geeks can use terminal to search for space hogs, and the very patient can choose “Calculate Folder Sizes” in Finder and wait to see which folders might have large files, then drill through them, this is a much faster, and more fun way to reclaim drive space.
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Comments
7 Responses to “GrandPerspective: A colorful (and FREE) way to reclaim hard drive space”
  1. ArtOfWarfare says:

    This looks like it should be a level to Emerald Mines.

  2. ArtOfWarfare says:

    I checked the program out myself.

    I was actually surprised it did reveal some useful information… two of the biggest files on my computer are demos of World of Warcraft and Bioshock… neither of which is any use because the demos didn’t impress me enough to justify the price tags.

    In response to the grayed out delete option, if you open preferences there’s a dialog that lets you choose which items you’re allowed to delete via the program.

  3. Daniel says:

    Looks a lot like Disk Inventory X ( http://www.derlien.com/ ) I’ll have to give it a try and see if its better.

  4. Frank says:

    DaisyDisk is prettier, I think.

  5. Harsh Khetawat says:

    The deletion functionality is there. You just have to enable it in the preferences.
    Nice app btw…just realized i was wasting 3.5gb on black and white 2, a game i dont even play anymore!

  6. Grant Wall says:

    While this would do the job, UI is a big thing to me as well.
    if you haven’t yet, check out DaisyDisk in the Mac App Store.
    I got it a ways back from MacHeist and it works like a charm.

  7. Daniel Carrey says:

    I really like Space Gremlin when I found it in the mac store. It’s like Grand Perspective but much easier to read imho.

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