Duplicate files are the bane of my existence. Aside from using disk space, these files do nothing but clutter up your drive, make your PC run slower, and increase the difficulty level significantly when it comes to finding the right version of a specific file: is it the one I just updated, or the other one?
We’ve covered many ways that you can save space on your storage drives over the years, most recently discussing how to manually go through large files and testing cleanup utilities, resetting Windows to its default state without losing your files, and methods for deleting the Windows.old backup, in all scenarios potentially reclaiming several gigabytes of storage in the process. Deleting duplicate files on your system could easily result in clean out that is similarly sizable if only a few large files are found.
Without installing third party software, your only option is running a search for a specific file via Windows Explorer and manually deleting the duplicates that appear. This isn’t helpful, of course, if you don’t know which files have duplicates.
If you’d rather not add any additional third party software to your system or learn your way around a new file explorer, it’s worth mentioning that CCleaner has a duplicate file finder built in (Tools > Duplicate Finder), if you happen to use that already. Note however we’re not as fond of CCleaner as we used to be and there are better alternatives these days.
Steps to delete duplicate files –
1. Open CCleaner.
2. Select Tools from the left sidebar.
3. Choose Duplicate Finder.
4. For most users, running the scan with the default selections is fine. You can, however, alter these searches by checking or unchecking the provided boxes, and selecting new sizes in the drop-down menus.
5. Choose the drive or folder you want to scan.
6. Click the Search button to start the scan.
7. Select the files you’d like to remove (carefully). Once you complete the next step, there’s no turning back. These files are gone.
8. Click the Delete Selected button to finish the operation.