Find Duplicate & Similar Images On Your Hard Drive With SimilarImages [Windows]

Ann Smarty 19-09-2011

find duplicate pictures


The main reason why you would want to delete similar images is to save some space on your hard drive. Going through your image folder deleting extra images is too time consuming. Besides, many of the similar images can have different names which makes identifying them almost impossible.

Luckily, there’s a free tool to semi-automate the process.

SimilarImages is a desktop application that finds similar (or duplicate) images on your hard drive among different folders.

The tool has already been mentioned in our round-up of ways to find duplicate image files on a Windows PC 5 Ways to Find Duplicate Image Files on Windows PC Duplicate image files are unnecessary and a waste of space. These tools will help you find and eradicate the image duplicates that are wasting space on your data drives. Read More but the tool definitely deserves a closer look.


The best thing about the tool is that it lets you configure the “similarity” threshold with enables you to configure which image pairs should be shown when comparing.


Image file pairs with a comparison value greater than the set threshold are ignored. Some recommended threshold settings include:

  • To find duplicates(fastest mode): 0 – 10
  • To scan through photos: about 12
  • To scan through folders containing scans: 50 – 60

You can also set the folder preferences:

  • Inclusive Search will only compare files located in the same folder with each other.
  • Exclusive Search means that only files not contained within the same folder will compared with each other.

find duplicate pictures


If you have a lot of images and photos on your computer, the first check will take quite a while. However the great thing about the tool is that it keeps its own index of scanned images. Next check will run across its fast Graphics Library. This makes scanning much faster.


The program even keeps track of your not-a-duplicate decisions: if you enable Cache-System, SimilarImages will remember when you indicate that a pair is not a duplicate. When you later check the same folders again it would bring up the same false-positives.

You can access and clear the gallery from the tool “Cache” menu.

Similar images

(Semi-) Automated Deletion

The tool also aims at making deleting duplicate files faster. Semi-automated deletion feature helps you choose which file to delete from a pair faster: when enabled, one file of a pair will be pre-selected depending on your rules.


For example, you can set to always pre-select a smaller image in a pair or the one with lower resolution or always the newer file. This definitely makes deleting extra images faster!

You can always set the tool to auto-delete a duplicate image in a pair (based on your above settings).

Working with Image Pairs

Once the application is done scanning the specified folders, it shows you the similar image pairs. Each image has a thumbnail, file size, dimensions, last-modified date and other properties. You can delete any of the files or replace one with the other.

  • The X-icon lets you delete the file.
  • The TwoFiles-icon lets you swap the file. (Swapping means in this context: The other file will be overwritten with this file, thus the contents of the first file will be kept but with the name of the second file.)
  • The Clear-icon lets you delete both files.
  • The Runner-icon lets you delete the file marked for semi-automated deletion.

find duplicate pictures


Looks like a great tool to sort out your stored image files and free up some space. What are your thoughts?

Related topics: Computer Maintenance, Hard Drive, Image Editor.

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  1. Tina
    September 20, 2011 at 5:57 pm

    Thanks Ivan!

  2. Suhel
    September 20, 2011 at 4:28 am

    any software for duplicate files, not images?

  3. Jesse Niou
    September 20, 2011 at 2:10 am

    Any idea if it works with camera RAW formats?  Those are the ones that REALLY take up space.  Each 1ds3 picture I take is around 22MB.

    • Ann Smarty
      September 21, 2011 at 8:10 am

      No idea, sorry! But since the software is free and very easy to try, I guess you could run it and see. And please come back to share your experience here!