Find Any File
By Thomas Tempelmann
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Unhappy with Spotlight? Find every file on any of your disks, including those usually hidden. Fast and precisely.
• Ever lost a file whose name you partially remember, now lost on your disks?
• Want to see which files got changed in the last 5 minutes?
• Looking for files on an external or network disk?
• Uninstall a sticky app, trying to find all its hidden files?
Find Any File (FAF) is the perfect tool for these tasks.
••• Please Note: For some users, the app takes very long to start.
••• I may have a fix, but it needs verification first.
••• If you have the issue, please contact me (see my website link on the right).
You can even search on disks that are not indexed by Spotlight, including server volumes.
Find Any File can find files that Spotlight doesn't, e.g. those inside bundles and packages, and inside system folders that are usually excluded from Spotlight search.
Contrary to Spotlight, it does not use a database but instead searches the data on disk directly. This lets you search for file properties such as name, creation and modification dates and size. Not text inside files, though, see note below.
Another useful feature is its hierarchical results view (see screenshots). It lets you view the found items within their respective folders, making it often much easier to browse through 100s of found items.
Finally, it is fast. Not always as fast as Spotlight, but it usually only takes a few seconds to locate all searched items on a disk.
•• Note ••
FAF does not search file content - for that simply use Spotlight (whose results can be enhanced with Tembo, also available in this store).
Also, check out EasyFind, a free alternative to Find Any File, which can look into every file to search for text. It has quite a different user interface which you might prefer over FAF's retro look.
•• Here's what users say about FAF ••
“FAF goes where Spotlight's can't easily reach. Not only that, the search results are nicely listed just as in Finder's hierarchical (flipping triangles) folder view or as a single list as in Finder with sortable columns for name, size, kind, and modification date.”
“As the administrator for about 50 school Macs, I often need to look for some file misplaced by a novice or, while troubleshooting a system, I often need to search for obscure operating system files. Find Any File is in my arsenal of tools when things files or folders go astray.”
“I use it when I want to find a specific kind of file or to see and eliminate or compare the double and redundant files. I surely use it 4-5 times a week.”
“I keep FAF as an icon in the toolbar of every Finder window. When I have to actually find something, I use FAF instead of the Finder.”
What's New in Version 1.8.9
• File Icons are fully opaque again.
• Makes sure windows appear on-screen when an external monitor gets detached.
• Fixes an issue where refreshing the Results takes an unusually long time.
• Solves an issue with OSX 10.10.2 where opening more than six items failed.
• When searching a "slow" volume, its name is displayed in the Find window again.
• Fixes issues with deleting items on a network volume.
• If the command "Delete Immediately" or "Move to Trash" fails, an error message is displayed.
• Deleting symlinks doesn't instead delete their destination any more.
• Switching between flat and tree views now preserves the selection even if more than one item is selected.
• The shortcuts Cmd-Shift-C and Cmd-Opt-C work again.
• Fix for OSX 10.9 and later: Changing an item's Label removes all other Tags previously set on that item.
• Fixes a few rare crash cases.
If you are updating, please leave a review or at least rate the app here in the Store to let others know of its usefulness.
Find Any File makes getting a specific file’s location much easier than the default OS X find. I usually have multiple volumes mounted and I’m impressed it’s as fast as it is. I just found out I can set two volumes to be searched without searching any of the others by dragging their icons from the Finder to the “Find Items” section in the search box, then select File -> Save as Default Search, and now those two volumes can be selected independently of all the others.
I don’t think it finds files faster than Spotlight, which someone else wrote, because you’re just never going to beat pre-indexed searches, but it’s very fast and at least I know when FAF is searching in realtime as opposed to an index, it’s finding everything at that point in time. I’m not always sure about how up-to-date Spotlight’s index is at any given time (on the start-up volume, yes; but for recently mounted volumes, that’s where I’m not sure it’s been indexed).
Saving default searches is vastly easier than using OS X’s save search function.
Developer responded to my question about how to search some but not all volumes nearly instantaneously, so for the price, definitely worth five stars.
Fast, easy to use, very very useful
There are times when one wants to find a file anywhere on a disk. Find Any File makes this very easy and quick.
For example, as I’ve migrated from machine to machine sometimes there are little helper apps, or files in non user spaces that have hung around long past their useful life. I noticed on my new Macbook Pro the fans were not operating correctly. Years ago when I put an SSD in my iMac I purchased a fan control program to make sure the device stayed cool as the SSD was a non standard apple component. When I moved to a Macbook Pro I had long forgotten about that utility….until I noticed one of the fans wasn’t operating correctly. After a little research I remembered the old program, but couldn’t remember the name, so I searched for the word “Fan” with Find any file. The components came up, I recognized them for what they were and deleted them. Problem solved.
I use Find any File on all my machines, I don’t use it very often, but when I do, it saves me time and pain over and over and over again.
My highest rating!
This is a well designed program. It is simple, fast and functions better than one would expect. It effectively finds any file in any directory on your hard drive. It allows several ways to search. For example, the exact file name or just a few words of the file’s title. When found, you get a list of results. What I like best about this program is that one can open the file right from the “Find Any File” window. My compliments to the programmer. He (her) put in the extra work to make this program intuitive and functional. As a former programmer, I know how easy it is to take shortcuts and create a mediocre program. But this one has the stamp of a programmer who takes pride in his (her) work.