Best Free File or Disk Catalog Organizer

 
Introduction

A file or disk catalog organizer helps index files stored on hard disks, removable media such as CDs, DVDs, USB drives or network drives in a few seconds and create catalogs for searching files without having access to the original media.

Some useful organizers provide searching capabilities based on file name, date and size, filtering options, or searching duplicates or singles, etc. These organizers save your precious time and effort in finding the files you want instantly from a collection of even thousands of files on your storage media.

 
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Discussion

CathyCathy is a tiny portable program that catalogs files on removable media, or on your hard drive. Once indexed, you can quickly search and locate a file by name, size, and date, with additional search fields for MP3 files. Multiple catalogs are supported and you can also search for duplicate files. There is also a handy directory listing feature that allows you to print the contents of any folder.

The real strength of this program is its speed; it can index hundreds of thousands of files without a problem. This makes it handy for sysadmins as well as users with large file collections. Cathy doesn't index the contents of files, just file names and other file properties. If you want to search contents use a desktop search program.

 

GentibusGentibus CD - "for the people" - is a very good name and choice if you're looking for a tool to organize your CD/DVD collection. The scan on CDs, DVDs or hard disks can be categorized and searched. The advanced search function will also find "Harry Po" if you're looking for "Harry Potter". Gentibus CD will find duplicates, quickly discovers image, audio, video and program files as 'super-categories' on its own, which comes in very handy when you're archiving a medium with mixed content. A very pleasing feature is that Gentibus CD will show you thumbnails of any pictures you might have archived on your CD/DVD so you will be able to search them somewhat as a virtual CD.

 

Visual CDVisual CD scans all the usual suspects in an explorer-like approach. The 'catalogs' contain the data of one medium, can be password protected and joined by favorites and also display the contents of zipped files. The search is very refined as you would expect in a competent file manager, complete with an 'extra' menu with very welcome features (dublicates, file splitter, thumbnail-maker, etc.) and the option menu allowing you to adjust the software to your needs.

 

DisclibDisclib is a terrific utility. I archive all of my projects to CD/DVD and keep them in a fireproof box for storage. But there are over 30 full discs now (half are DVDs), and many of them have multiple versions of the same project. Disclib keeps an index of the file/directory structure of every disc, so I can search through them all without having to swap 30 discs in my drive! Invaluable!

 
Related Products and Links

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Quick Selection Guide

Cathy
4.5
 
Gizmo's Freeware award as the best product in its class!

Runs as a stand-alone program on a user's computer
Good speed, support multiple catalogs, search duplicate files, handy directory listing, print contents of any folder.
Does not index the contents of files.
http://www.mtg.sk/rva/
http://www.mtg.sk/rva/
2.31
66 KB
Unrestricted freeware
This product is portable.
XP(SP3), Vista(SP2), Win7 and above.

v2.31 released 28 January, 2013

Gentibus CD
4
 
Runs as a stand-alone program on a user's computer
Find duplicates, discovers super categories, show thumbnails.
1.51
8.9 MB
Unrestricted freeware
There is no portable version of this product available.
XP/ Vista/ 7
Visual CD
3.5
 
Runs as a stand-alone program on a user's computer
Scan in explorer-like approach, can be password protected, displays contents of zipped files, refined search with welcome features.
4.2
2.33 MB
Unrestricted freeware
There is no portable version of this product available.
Windows

View the changelog here

Disclib
3.5
 
Runs as a stand-alone program on a user's computer
Archive and keep an index of file/directory structure of disks.
2.0
3.86 MB
Unrestricted freeware
There is no portable version of this product available.
Windows 2000, XP

 
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Tags

file catalog, disk catalog, disc catalogue, file organizer, disk organizer, disc organiser, free software

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Comments

by profondorosso75 on 6. January 2013 - 1:07  (104255)

Hi all, I'm looking for catalog software to catalog all my hard drives and flash drives but I would like it to be integrated into explorer. so when I open explorer or my computer I want to see all my drives, even the ones that I don't have attached and have the ability to search or browse them. Alternatively I would use a stand alone program for this if it had a built in file manager utility so I could also manage/copy/move/delete/new folder etc. my online drives. It is not clearly stated if any here do that. anyone have any suggestions for what I'm looking for? if it doesn't exist, why doesn't someone much smarter than me create it? Thanks.

by Tapan Chakraborty on 20. May 2013 - 6:25  (107879)

Gentibus CD - "for the people" - is a very good name and choice if you're looking for a tool to organize your CD/DVD collection. The scan on CDs, DVDs or hard disks can be categorized and searched. The advanced search function will also find "Harry Po" if you're looking for "Harry Potter". Gentibus CD will find duplicates, smartly discovers image, audio, video and program files as 'super-categories' on its own, which comes very handy when you're archiving a medium with mixed content. A very pleasing feature is that Gentibus CD will show you thumbnails of any pictures you might have archived on your CD/DVD so you will be able to search them somewhat as a virtual CD.

This darn thing kept telling me my data access files where not installed despite installing the latest one.

by Micke12 on 5. June 2013 - 7:36  (108289)

Disk Explorer 3 is perfect for when you have Virtual CDs that are 60GB+ in size. Very easy to use and very customizable, and best of all, it is free, unless you want to make a donation through paypal.

by gogabz on 28. June 2014 - 15:19  (116993)

Just installed Cathy on a windows 8 laptop. When I try to Catalog any folder it just reports it as inaccessible!

by DavidFB on 2. July 2014 - 23:28  (117098)

Thanks for the tips.
I've been using DiscCat for years but it's no longer giving decent search results with nearly 200 catalogues. Really annoying when I know its there but its not finding the disc#.

With Cathy not supporting 64 bit properly, thats off the table. I need a database, not Gentibus's extras. Visual CD has not been updated in years. Several people pointed to issues with proprietary formats. No desire to re-catalogue repeatedly.

Virtual Volumes View looks like a great choice - thanks for the review James. The site mentions a prior issue with corrupt MP3 files thats fixed - that may address Geerts issue.

Doesn't appear to search inside Zip files like DiscCat or Visual CD.

by DavidFB on 2. July 2014 - 23:29  (117099)

Cathy doesn't support Win8.

by DavidFB on 2. July 2014 - 23:30  (117100)

Sorry - is this a disc cataloguer or virtual drive software?

by DavidFB on 2. July 2014 - 23:33  (117101)

Probably looking for Windows components that are no longer present. They mention fixing a bug like this but that was long before your comment so evidently they didn't. No longer being developed.

by DavidFB on 3. July 2014 - 19:05  (117126)

Have loaded about 1/4 of my discs into VVV. It works very well. The default (which can be controlled) is to also index metadata in audio files. So discs with a bunch of music will take much longer to index and may even show as "Not Responding". But all the discs have worked if I let it do its thing. Regular files index very quickly. And the search is fast. This is so much better than what I was using.

A couple of quick Startup tips.
First you use New to create a catalogue. Then you click catalogue (the disc icon) to add a volume to the catalogue. Give it a name - I use a number series so the discs are easily browsed in time sequence. These will then list in Physical view.

To Search, click Search and select Contains first.

All can be exported to CSV.
The only thing it doesn't do I'm used to is index ZIP file contents but thats not a biggy for me.

The main key of course with any of these tools is good labelling. You won't be able to find it easily if you don't name folders and files in searchable terms.

by DavidFB on 3. July 2014 - 19:08  (117127)

Nope.
You have file managers (a different category) and you have off-line disc index/catalogues. These tools are designed to find files in non-attached storage. Even perhaps on a network.

on-line and off-line tools are quite different.

by sicknero on 3. July 2014 - 21:17  (117129)

It's a cataloguer.

http://tjelinek.com/main.php?section=dd

The installer can be extracted and run portably (although it will auto-create a data folder in My Docs and profile settings in AppData).

The program itself is packed with all sorts of functions, it will catalogue the contents of archives, add thumbnails for pictures in the catalogue etc, all of which is configurable.

It's not been updated since 2010 but it's very good, I've used it for years although I find VVV a bit more straightforward and faster on the whole.

by DavidFB on 3. July 2014 - 22:26  (117131)

Thanks for the notes.
If you want speed and search functions, I'd turn off things like thumbnails. But if you use photos and images a lot, it would be slower but that may be a function you find very useful.

Depends on needs.

by sicknero on 3. July 2014 - 23:07  (117133)

Yes exactly. DEP3 can be slow precisely because it can extract and store so much information about the data that it catalogues.

Personally I don't need all that so I find it easier to use VVV which has far fewer configuration options.

by Epsilon on 18. October 2014 - 7:32  (119247)

Cathy works fine on Windows 8 if you run it in XP (SP3) compatibility mode, or at least it has so far for me.

Cheers,

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