Freeware Files: 5 Apps for Hardcore File Management!


I'll preface: not that kind of hardcore file management. And I'll promise: I will do my best to not make some kind of witty reflection about how it's the new year, and you should really use this time to finish that big resolution of getting your computer's file system all tidy and organized, et cetera. Only, I just said that. And that's exactly what this first Freeware Files of the 2010 is about. Enclosed within the bits and bytes of this post are five killer applications that are designed to help out your cluttered, aging file system by hunting down junk, helping you organize, and giving you new ways to tackle issues that bugged you in 2009.

There's no freeware app that's going to get me to stop with this extended metaphor, unfortunately. But don't let that keep you away from the helpful programs found within the bowels of this very post. Need an app that better manages your Windows 7 libraries? Got it. Need a way to recover deleted files from a USB key? Fear not. Want to catalog and delete the duplicate files taking up unnecessary space on your system? Get ready to itch that trigger finger.

Those are but mere snippets of the full assortment of apps in this week's roundup. If frustrating file issues and a steadily decreasing amount of hard drive space makes you mad, then get ready to pop five different freeware chill pills.


If you're sitting on a large stash of photographs in hopes that they'll somehow sprout wings and fly away to your favorite online hosting service, you're in for quite a wait. While Migratr can't help you get your pictures from your hard drive to your favorite online photo gallery of choice, it's an awesome tool for duplicating the contents of an online photo archive to a new service entirely.

The cool thing about the freeware app Migratr is its sheer compatibility: In one app, you have a direct route to quickly get your photos transferred (really, copied) to more than 10 different photo hosting services. Jump from Photobucket to Flickr. Jump from Flickr to Smugmug. Jump from Smugmug to Picasa. Does this have anything to do with actual desktop-based file management? Not really. However, to dry up the future tears streaming down your face when your years' worth of photographs are eliminated in a single, unfortunate drive crash, there is no better solution than Migratr. In but a few clicks, you have insta-backups all around the Web--backups that preserve your original EXIF data, mind you.

Download it here !


Delete a file on your system and it goes to your recycle bin. Delete a file on your USB key... and you're stuck. Stuck until now, that is. The useful app iBin creates a new recycle bin of sorts on a portable device of your choosing, tasked with storing the deleted files from your USB drive until you're ready to cut the cord for good. A super-helpful configuration screen actually gives you more options to work with than the default Windows recycle bin, and an easy-to-use file list delivers the name, size, and deletion date of the files you've since recycled from your key.

The only sticking point with iBin is that it uses the term "recycled" to actually mean "restore," whereas traditional Windows users might mistake this for "delete for good." The "Clear data selected" option is actually the big delete key for files that have been recycled. Er. Deleted. Er. Trashed?

Download it here !

Win7 Library Tool

Windows 7's libraries--large file organizers that can scoop up certain files from across your operating system into giant combined folders--are pretty cool tools for those with media files scattered all over the place. However, just try adding a networked location as part of a library. Odds are good you will run into difficulty. Solving that problem became the genesis of the Win7 Library Tool, but that's not all this little utility can deliver for Windows 7 library enthusiasts. Not only will you be able to add un-indexed folders to your libraries for now and evermore, but you'll also be able to:

  • Backup and restore your library configuration for quick resetting following an OS reinstallation or for transfer to a different PC.
  • Create a mirror of your libraries in a new [systemdrive]:\Libraries folder, which gives you easier access to said libraries by eliminating your need to hunt through a large list of folders.
  • Change the icons for your libraries!

Download it here !

Auslogics Duplicate File Finder

The name says it all. This application combs through your system and spits out a list of all the duplicate files on your PC. You can then peruse said files and choose which, if any, you want to delete from your system for good. Sounds easy, right?

Just to make sure that it's catching exactly what you want it to catch, Duplicate File Finder comes with a number of configurable options for the searches it runs on your system. You can have the program match files by their exact name, size, date and time, or contents--which includes an MD5 check, in case two files are bit-for-bit identical but exist under different names in your file system. You can set the program to scan for particular files, like multimedia or applications, and tell it to ignore any files under a specific size. Who cares about those tiny little text files on your drive when you can go after the bigger space hogs?

Download it here !


Just how well is the NTFS file system--and I hope you've switched to the NTFS file system--compressing your folders? Only one way to find out! Fire up the NTFSRatio utility, which gives you way to scan folders and subfolders on your system to determine just how much compression you've achieved for a particular file or folder. If you've found that this ratio just isn't up to your specifications, then you can compress or decompress the folder directly through NTFSRatio. It's that easy.

Download it here !

David Murphy (@ Acererak) is a technology journalist and former Maximum PC editor. He writes weekly columns about the wide world of open-source as well as weekly roundups of awesome, freebie software. Befriend him on Twitter, especially if you have an awesome app or game you're dying to recommend!

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