What better way to release a handy new feature than to tell exactly no-one about it and hope someone figures it out? Well, that approach appears to be working for Microsoft, who quietly inserted a new disk analysis tool into the latest Insider Preview builds.
Disk Usage allows you to check out how much space your drives are taking up using the Command Prompt. There are some other handy parameters for analysis, too.
What Is Windows 10’s New Disk Usage Tool?
Although Microsoft hasn’t announced the new Disk Usage tool, eagle-eyed Windows 10 Insider Preview users spotted the new feature.
Disk Usage is a command-line tool that analyzes your disk space. You run Disk Usage from the Command Prompt, and it comes with an extensive array of options and parameters to help you properly scan and manage your disk space.
Currently, the tool is in the development process. If you’re using Windows 10 Insider Preview builds 20277 or 21277 (or later), you should be able to take Disk Usage for a test drive.
As the tool is still in development, some features aren’t completely usable. Furthermore, there are some usability issues. For example, the tool currently requires you to search for file sizes using bytes rather than megabytes or gigabytes.
This results in somewhat complicated search strings involving massive numbers. If you wanted to search for files larger than 1.73 gigabytes, you’d have to input 1,857,573,355.52 bytes.
For now, you should use an online unit converter to make sure you input the correct data values. Nothing bad will happen if you don’t, but you might miss files or folders that you’re looking for.
When Disk Usage is fully functional, you’ll be able to create specific configuration files that contain the search and analysis options you regularly use, saving you additional time when analyzing your data.
Why Is Windows 10 New Disk Usage Feature Exciting?
Prior to Disk Usage appearing in the Windows 10 Insider Preview build, Windows 10 users had to use tools like WinDirStat or TreeSize to scan an entire drive and list the folders using the most space.
The introduction of Disk Usage is great for those happy to use the Command Prompt and comfortable with command-line operations.
Those users who prefer not to mess around with the command line can continue using the aforementioned third-party apps, which are not only handy and easy to use but provide a useful visual guide to disk space analysis.
How to Use Disk Usage on Windows 10
If you are using one of the correct Windows 10 Insider Preview versions (builds 20277 or 21277 or later), you can test Disk Usage for yourself.
- Type command prompt in your Start menu search bar, then select Run as Administrator.
- Input diskusage /? and press Enter.
The command opens the Disk Usage command-line utility and displays an extensive list of Disk Usage parameters and options.