What is the best way to safely get rid of duplicates

Somehow, I suspect because I’m anxious about losing things, I’ve ended up with a ton (Thousands) of duplicates in my iCloud Drive.

I have tried Duplicate Detective Pro and Gemini software to get rid of the duplicates but they really don’t give you a good option to keep the files that are in the correct folders that you want to save.

It would be great if there was a consolidate to this folder option which would take all the duplicates and put them in that designated folder and allow you to select search criteria such as keep the largest, keep the latest, etc.

I have used DevonThink to create an index of my iCloud Drive, and it shows all the duplicates but it doesn’t provide any way to delete the duplicates but at least keep one copy.

Does anyone know if there’s a way to do it using Devonthink?

I also have free file Sync that can be used to merge folders, but finding the ones you want to merge is not always easy.

I’m not sure what is creating files that have a 1.PDF, 2.PDF at the end of the file name. One would think that if you copied a folder to Location where the folder already exists He would give you the option to either replace or keep both, etc., I’m not sure which creating these files with a number at the end.

Just an FYI I do have iCloud running on my Windows machine As well as my MacBook Pro, Mac mini and iPad.

Just an fyi I have SetApp and Hazel. Hopefully as I use Hazel more, I’ll be able to organize my files better.

One thought I had was to create a DMG container and then copy all the files from my iCloud Drive into the DMG and then dismount it so that it wouldn’t show up in searches and so if I can’t find a particular file I could mount it and then search it as well.

The other option would be to create a DEVONthink database with all my iCloud files imported into it and then have it be ignored by Houdha spot and Siri search.

I also have access to Pathfinder and it has the ability to flatten a directories so that you can more easily see where the duplicates lie.

Any recommendations, thoughts?

Thanks in advance,


I normally use EagleFiler. I place the folders I want de-duped into EF and on Import it leaves the first copy in its original location and places all dups in an “Unable to Import” directory. Afterward, if desired, I return the de-duped folders to their original location.

It’s not perfect but it’s at least as good as Gemini, IMO.

Can EagleFiler handle Dropbox now that it’s moved to ~/Library/CloudStorage? The reason I ask is that I had been using Gemini 2 up until the change of Dropbox location. Gemini 2 won’t scan ~/Library as explained by their support:

“If your files are located in ~/Library/CloudStorage, Gemini 2 won’t be able to scan it. Gemini 2 is designed to not scan this location by default. The main reason behind this is to prioritize system stability and overall Mac performance - deleting certain files situated in the Library folder can potentially cause applications to malfunction, lead to loss of important data, or even disrupt system performance. Thus, Gemini 2 intentionally ignores system files to avoid any mishaps that might occur.”

Page 139 of the latest (v1.9.12) EagleFiler manual says

Dropbox is a free service for sharing files between Macs and accessing them from the Web or an iPhone or iPad. It is the recommended cloud storage for use with EagleFiler.

I haven’t used Dropbox in years so I can’t offer an opinion, other than to say make sure you have a good backup before trying this. And I would disconnect from the Internet to insure that Dropbox isn’t trying to sync.