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Free Tools

Free Tool: WinDirStat Disk Analyzer.

***UPDATE as of 8/1/2020: Looking back 3 years, I’d like to add this – In a business setting, NEVER leave something like the monitoring of server disk space utilization up to a manual process. Where dollars are at work and every minute counts, metrics like disk utilization need active monitoring with automatic responsive measures in order to guaranteee uptime and minimize or eliminate business impact. Live and learn!

But the gist of the below article is still true: WinDirStat is a great tool, completely free, and very handy when you just need a quick overview of disk utilization – especially for an end user’s workstation, where you’re less likely to have full-featured monitoring in place. 


Disk space is a precious commodity, especially in the business setting. Everything can be moving along hunky-dory one day with hundreds of gigabytes of free space – only to scream to a dead stop weeks later as the hard limit is reached. Yikes!

An obvious solution is to increase capacity – but is that always necessary? Of course not! Sometimes all you need is to free up disk space by eliminating old files and data that are no longer needed. Done correctly, this will cost you nothing and require very little time and effort.

Huzzah! May I present: WinDirStat, the free tool which can diagnose your disk space usage and even provide some limited cleanup functions. WinDirStat is a simple application which looks through your computer’s drives and folders before presenting usage statistics in an easy-to-read format which will tell you where your worst space-usage offenders are living. This equips you with the knowledge you need to figure out what can be deleted to maximize your cleanup impact.

The statistics are presented in the form of charts and/or lists: clear and concise. From the graphic below, we can see – for instance – that the Users folder is chock full. The Users folder can be expanded to reveal which users are hogging the most space, allowing a server admin to get in touch and inquire on the deletion of unneeded files.

windirstat_results

From my own experience, WinDirStat is an invaluable tool to have installed on any server, period; when ran at least once a month, you can stay ahead of the game and prevent space usage issues before they become major problems. The application is completely free – no purchases, logins, or even irritating advertisements. Give it a shot!

To download WinDirStat, click here.

About Austin Thomé

Experienced IT Engineer based in Dallas, TX - architecting solutions and helping businesses solve problems / improve processes. Expert Coffee Drinker and Friend to All Mankind.

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About the Editor

Austin Thomé

Austin Thomé

Writer, enthusiastic IT Professional, expert coffee drinker, and website proprietor.

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