Disk Inventory X was kind of nice, but it is painfully slow.

Are there any modern and faster alternatives?

I only care about the disk space, and not about the file type stats and about the graph which Disk Inventory X displays.

  • 10
    The speed is primarily a function of disc size, number of files and disc speed. I doubt whether other applications can be significantly faster
    – nohillside
    Feb 9, 2013 at 10:27
  • 2
    @patrix uh? If, for instance, it was badly coded, of course there might be faster alternatives. How can you know it is state-of-the-art?
    – o0'.
    Feb 9, 2013 at 10:46
  • Edited to point out I only care about disk space and not the other fancy stuff.
    – o0'.
    Feb 9, 2013 at 10:46
  • 5
    I didn't say it's state of the art. But traversing a filesystem and gathering statistics is bound to be slow due to hardware effects. And whether the application just reads file sizes or also the other stuff doesn't really matter. But let's see whether somebody comes up with answers.
    – nohillside
    Feb 9, 2013 at 10:47
  • 1
    omnigroup.com/products/omnidisksweeper maybe? Not graphical though
    – nohillside
    Feb 9, 2013 at 10:53

10 Answers 10


OmniGroup offers a free utility called OmniDisksweeper which lists files/folders sorted by size.

OmniDiskSweeper is really great at what it does: showing you the files on your drive, in descending order by size, and letting you delete them easily! It scans your disks as quickly as possible and shows you the facts — if a file doesn't make the cut to stay, just click the big Delete button and be done with it. It's a fast, easy way to find those large files cluttering up your drive and clearing them out for new, better things. Make sure you want them gone, though. There's no going back

  • 1
    Orders of magnitude faster than Disk Inventory X, it would be great if not for some quirks, such as not being able to right click the files (to either open in finder or send them to the bin): it can only delete them. Still much better, though.
    – o0'.
    Feb 9, 2013 at 13:12
  • 1
    Update: you can open the files, only using a specific icon down right or down left, but not right clicking, or through the menu bar. I reiterate: much better than the alternative, but it has so many UI mistakes...
    – o0'.
    Oct 13, 2013 at 9:33
  • 13
    The problem with OmniDiskSweeper is that it does not display a visual tree map like Disk Inventory X. Without the tree map it is impossible to find large files in otherwise small folders simply by scanning the image for large rectangles.
    – mgd
    Nov 22, 2014 at 9:33
  • 2
    For homebrew users: brew cask install omnidisksweeper
    – matt burns
    Nov 4, 2016 at 11:51
  • 1
    Almost 7 years later, still using it!
    – o0'.
    Jun 21, 2020 at 18:51

Starting with macOS Sierra, macOS comes with an built in app from Apple called Storage Management, which is a part of the System Information app. In different tabs it shows you the largest apps installed, as well as a folder viewer with their sizes listed. A special tab shows the largest files over all of your folders, which I find very practical.

To launch Storage Management open Spotlight Search by hitting ⌘ Command Space, type "Storage Management" and hit ⏎ Return.


  • Free,
  • Fast,
  • Provided by Apple, so it knows what it's doing.

You can find more information here.

  • 17
    I mean it's pretty useless compared to these other tools. The storage app won't show or include ~/Library at all, which contained about 60GB of Spotify cache.
    – Allison
    Aug 16, 2017 at 3:19
  • 8
    @Sirens Not true. In the Storage Manager click Documents -> File Browser and analyze the ~/Library folder if you wish.
    – Dr_Zaszuś
    Dec 4, 2017 at 20:24
  • 3
    You can't analyse external disks with Storage Management, only your Mac HD
    – Seano
    Oct 19, 2019 at 14:21
  • That's quite interesting: I had 69Gb on my mac air used by iOS iPhone back up and didn't know about that!
    – numediaweb
    Apr 25, 2020 at 11:11
  • 1
    I have 578GB of "Other" which I can't expand... i.imgur.com/r5Surr0.png
    – opyate
    Jun 15, 2021 at 13:11

I think Disk Inventory is as fast or slow as any of the others. If the disk is big, it's slower than on a little one, and of course, on an SSD it is really fast. Although it is from 2006, I think it isn't bad coded, and it still works on my 10.9.

It gives more info than you need, but you can ignore that, as long as you find what you need. I guess what takes time is the reading of the disc, an app without the details of kind of info won't, as far as I think, really take much less.

I am using it for ages now, there was a time in Mavericks it didn't work, now it goes well. I recommend GrandPerspective, it seems to make the same (with more alternatives which you anyhow don't seem to need), but is fresher .

GrandPerspective: http://grandperspectiv.sourceforge.net

  • 8
    Disk Inventory X is definitely slower than both OmniSweeper and GrandPerspective on my MacBook Pro with 500GB SSD. That said, GrandPerspective is IMHO a much better alternative to Disk Inventory X than OmniSweeper simply because GrandPerspective also includes the visual tree map without which it is virtually impossible to find single large files. With the tree map you can simply scan the image for large rectangles (large files or large folders).
    – mgd
    Nov 22, 2014 at 9:44
  • 3
    Grandperspectiv is seeing frequent updates currently. This is the correct answer to the original question. May 11, 2016 at 5:42
  • 14
    brew cask install grandperspective
    – ccpizza
    Jul 7, 2017 at 16:47
  • 1
    Yep, using now (2018, on High Sierra) GrandPerspective. The big difference with Apples Storage Management, is that it is more visual (every file has a box according to volume) and it does not make any suggestions. PD: @Pang, thank you for editing my bad English!
    – leon
    Jul 14, 2018 at 21:29
  • 2
    This should be the accepted answer. GrandPerspective maintains the visual feedback that is key to DiskInventoryX Jan 8, 2019 at 22:34

Thanks to brew formulae,

I'd recommend ncdu (https://formulae.brew.sh/formula/ncdu) for users who like a command line tool and baobab (https://formulae.brew.sh/formula/baobab) for users who like a graphical user interface.

installation commands for quick copy-paste:


brew install ncdu

sample screenshot for ncdu:

enter image description here


brew install baobab

sample screenshot for baobab:

enter image description here

  • baobab looks nice but it's crazy slow on macOS 10.15.15
    – Alex
    Jul 6, 2020 at 6:53

Daisy Disk seems to be faster, but costs money. This process will always take longer than you want, though (I don't think OSX allows access to disk index files).

You can try one of the Linux based tools, such as PhileSight and see what happens too. Will be alot quicker if it works.

  • I've been a Daisy Disk user for a good part of the decade. It's simple, clean, and Mac-like. However I can see why people would rather not spend $10 if there's a free alternative around.
    – fregante
    Apr 8, 2021 at 1:17

I can heartily recommend ncdu if you're looking for a text (ncurses) based alternative. One of the fastest I've found.

  • I found it easier to use than a GUI app; flat is better than nested (from the python philosophy); very handy for remote systems accessed via ssh! for macs available from homebrew — brew install ncdu, and for linuces available in debian/ubuntu repos: sudo apt install ncdu.
    – ccpizza
    Sep 2, 2017 at 19:34

Use onboard tools:

Step 1: Open Finder
Step 2: In the menu bar select View → as List
Step 3: In the menu bar, select View → Show View Options
Step 4: Check the box next to Calculate all sizes

Source: https://9to5mac.com/2016/07/01/how-to-show-size-folders-finder-list-view-mac/


Disk Inventory X doesn't work on Big Sur anymore... :(

I just installed Disk Space Analyzer from the App Store and it's free and works like a charm on Big Sur. Disk Space Analyzer screenshot


The top alternative according to alternativeTo (as well as my own sample usage) is JDiskReport.

The thing I liked most about it is that it shows a clear status of the ongoing scan, as well as a time estimate for when it is expected to finish. The others I tried at best just show a "spinny" and you have no idea if the program is stuck or what.

This was actually a game changer in my case for two reasons:

  1. I realized I had an 8TB mounted network share those programs were scanning, which would have taken forever (assuming they didn't crash / run out of memory before).
  2. I had one folder with millions of files in it, which basically chokes out all such tools, but at least now I knew what that folder was so I could investigate further.

The App Store versions of both [Disk Space Analyser] (https://apps.apple.com/au/app/disk-space-analyzer-inspector/id446243721?mt=12) and Daisy Disk are limited functionality compared to the versions available from the developers' websites:

The paid download versions of both cost the same, USD $9.99.

The App Store version of Daisy Disk also costs USD $9.99, but if you've bought it from the App Store you can get the download version for free. The App Store version of Disk Space Analyzer is free, but it's unclear how much functionality is missing (ie. they don't say).

Neither App Store version include hidden files, so aren't going to find those leftover caches. For that you need the download version.

They look pretty similar in UI and functionality. Daisy Disk seems to have a higher profile, and includes the ability to scan your cloud storage for Dropbox, Google Drive and OneDrive. Disk Space Analyzer includes the ability to copy or move selected files as opposed to just deleting them, which could be pretty handy (noting that that comparison chart is on the Nektony site so use your own judgement there).

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