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I have many music files downloaded from my different sources into my hard drives. I need a reliable, free piece of software to recognise and delete duplicate files. By duplicated,

I mean similar content and format. Filename is a good starting point, but I also have some files that are named just "Track 1", "Track 2" and so on. Therefore, a tool that checksums file contents and shows duplicates is needed.

The tool I want must not contain any ads for installing other products, or toolbars, or similar unnecessary add-ons. It should be free as in I don't have to pay anything.

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    Any specific OS? – aman207 Feb 8 '14 at 22:37
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    How about files that contain the same song but with different bitrate? Checksum would consider them different. – Nicolas Raoul Apr 28 '14 at 5:48
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I think your problem constists of two subproblems. You first need to find out which songs are duplicates and then delete them.

For finding duplicates I recommend MusicBrainz Picard. This takes fingerprints of your files and tags them correctly. It also offers renaming and moving the files. If there are duplicates the filename will have an additional number in braces. So for example the first file may be named Artist - Song.mp3 and the second is then Artist - Song (1).mp3.

To be sure that this is not misleading,put each album into separate folders and include the track number in the filename (such as $Albumartist/$Album/$Number - $Title). You can run the program again later to give the real name after the superfluous files are deleted. Retagging a file that has already been tagged using picard is much faster, because fingerprints are not calculated twice.

Solutions for actually deleting the files differ from OS to OS. I would recommend searching for *(1).mp3 and deleting the files manually. This way you can decide which file you want to keep in case they differ (e.g. in quality/size).

  • I am testing MusicBrainz Picard. Meanwhile, I wait if there'll be more responses. – Any Body Feb 16 '14 at 20:44
  • Picard does not actually provide a way to delete duplicates so is not really a good solution – Paul Taylor Nov 26 '15 at 9:41
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You can use Auslogics' Duplicate File Finder

  • free
  • compatible with Windows XP, Vista, 7, 8.1
  • fast
  • compare not only file names, but also contents to ensure no false search results.
  • allow you to specify the file types and sizes to look for, and decide which copies to delete.
  • don't come with crapware
  • allow you to easily select which folders to analyze

enter image description here

Like you I have loads of MP3s from different sources and I find Auslogics' Duplicate File Finder very useful. If you need more ideas: List of duplicate file finders.

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    About 45 minutes ago I was just running that very thing for this very purpose - though I had a lot more than 22mb of duplicate MP3s! – Nick Wilde Apr 28 '14 at 5:00
  • I just tried this software and it does NOT check the contents. Don't come with crapware? wrong! It said to me my fragmentation of my hard disk is not OK. That's not what this software should be doing. – diedie2 Apr 28 '15 at 18:27
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Yesterday I was searching for something similar. I found many things, but not all of them checked the real content of a file (they just checked tags, filename and/or hash-check). One program catched my eye => Similarity. It's free with a paid part. I really considerd purchasing it, but I think I'm gonna check some other free alternatives first.

What I can say is that it works pretty fast (but must be said I have a quadcore CPU with HyperThreading. In the paid version it should even be able to use the GPU to get even faster result.

Comparing the price, the paid part is the cheapest that I found (most other software were $ 30 or more), excluding free software ofc.

Maybe there are other people here with more experience with this soft?

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SongKong Music Tagger can find duplicate songs and then delete them or move them to another folder. Because SongKong is designed for music files it offers different ways to identify what is a duplicate including acoustic matching as can be seen from the screenshot below

Delete Duplicates Options

Also when you have found some duplicate files it lets you specify criteria for deciding which of the duplicates should be kept and which should be deleted

Delete Duplicates More Options

The different duplicate options are explained in a series of videos

SongKong is not free but does meet your other criteria and there is a free trial whereby you can test it out, disclaimer I am the SongKong developer.

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  • CloneSpy (portable, free) can scan for duplicate files by their checksums and either automatically delete or prompt to delete files.

  • iTunes has a "Show Duplicates" function although I believe that's done via ID3 tags.

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