DiskBoss Logo
Flexense Data Management Software

File Classification and Organizing

DiskBoss recognizes more than 3,500 types of files and is capable of classifying files and showing a categorized hierarchy of files sorted by the amount of the disk space used by each file category. DiskBoss includes a number of file classification plugins capable of classifying files by the file type, extension, user name, last access, modification and creation dates, etc. In order to classify files in one or more disks or directories, select the required directories in the DiskBoss file navigator and press the 'Classify' button.

DiskBoss File Classification Command

On the 'File Classification Plug-ins' dialog, select an appropriate file classification plug-in and press the 'Classify' button. DiskBoss will classify all the selected disks and directories and show the file classification results dialog displaying a categorized hierarchy of files sorted by the amount of the disk space used by each file category.

DiskBoss File Classification Results

The file classification results dialog allows one to browse the file hierarchy, perform file management operations on files and file categories, generate various types of charts, export HTML, PDF, Excel, XML, text and CSV reports and submit file classification results to an SQL database. In addition, the user is provided with the ability to physically reorganize files on the disk according to the used file classification plug-in. Finally, power users are provided with the ability to design custom plug-ins using an open and easy-to-use XML-Based format.

DiskBoss File Classification Video Tutorial

File Classification Pie Charts

DiskBoss provides a number of different types of charts capable of showing the amount of the disk space and the number of files per file category, extension, user name, file size, last access, modification and creation dates, etc. In order to open the charts dialog press the 'Charts' button located on the file classification results dialog toolbar.

DiskBoss File Classification Pie Chart Categories

By default, the charts dialog shows the currently displayed file categories and the selected second-level file categories. In order to change the displayed chart type, use the chart mode selector. In order to generate a chart for a different type of second-level file categories, select the required categories on the file classification results dialog and then open the charts dialog.

DiskBoss File Classification Pie Chart Extensions

The charts dialog provides the user with the ability to customize the chart's status line and allows one to copy the chart image to the clipboard making it very easy to integrate DiskBoss file classification pie charts into user's documents and presentations.

File Filters and File Categories

The top view of the file classification results dialog shows the file categories and classes sorted by the amount of the used disk space and the bottom view shows the second-level file categories and filters, which may be used to filter files and categories displayed in the top view making it very easy to focus on specific types of files or file groups.

DiskBoss File Classification File Categories

DiskBoss allows one to categorize file classification results by the file extension, file size, user name, creation, last modification and last access dates. In order to change the current file categorization mode, click on the file categorization combo box located in the top-left corner of the second-level file categories view.

DiskBoss File Classification File Filter

In order to apply a second-level file filter, select one or more file categories in the filters view, press the right mouse button and select the 'Apply Selected Filters' menu item. DiskBoss will filter file classification results and display in the top view files matching the selected file filters and file categories containing these files.

DiskBoss File Classification File Filter Active

When a file filter is active, the file classification results dialog generates charts and exports HTML, PDF, XML, text and Excel CSV reports for filtered files only. The user is provided with the ability to browse the filtered file hierarchy and perform file management operations in the usual way. In order to reset the file filter, press the right mouse button over the filters view and select the 'Clear Selected Filters' menu item.

Analyzing File Classification Results

DiskBoss provides multi-level file classification and disk space analysis capabilities allowing one to analyze file classification results and visualize physical locations of all files related to one or more specific file categories or file classes. These capabilities are especially useful when used in conjunction with second-level file categories and filters providing the user with the ability to analyze categorized and filtered file classification results and making it very easy to reveal locations of very specific files the user is looking for.

DiskBoss File Classification Analyze

In order to analyze file classifications results, select one or more file classes or categories in the file classification results dialog, press the right mouse button and select the 'Analyze' menu item. DiskBoss will process the selected file categories and classes and display a file system hierarchy showing files related to the selected file categories or classes and the directories containing these files.

DiskBoss File Classification Analyze Results

Analysis results are displayed in the standard disk space analysis dialog, which provides the user with the ability to generate pie charts, export HTML, PDF, XML, text and Excel CSV report, perform file management operations, etc.

Searching Files in File Classification Results

DiskBoss provides the ability to search files in file classification results by the file name, extension, full path, file category, file size, file attributes, creation, last modification and last access dates. In order to start a file search operation, classify one or more disks or directories and press the 'Search' button located on the main toolbar.

File Classification Results Search Files

By default, the search operation will be performed on all file classification results. In order to search files in a specific file category, select the category in the file classification results view, press the right mouse button and select the 'Search Files' menu item. DiskBoss will search in the selected categories of files and display the file search results dialog showing a list of files matching the user specified criteria.

Searching Files in File Classification Results

The search results dialog allows one to filter and categorize file search results, display various types of pie charts, copy, move and/or delete files, export file search results to a number of standard report formats including PDF, HTML, text, Excel CSV and XML. In addition, advanced users are provided with the ability to export file search results to an SQL database.

File Management Operations

DiskBoss allows one to copy, move and delete files and related to specific file categories. In order to perform a file operation on one or more file categories, select the required items in the file categories view, press the right mouse button and select an appropriate file management operation.

DiskBoss File Classification Copy

For copy and move operations, enter the destination directory and optionally press the 'Advanced Options' button to open the file copy options dialog. The copy options dialog allows one to control the file overwrite mode, file copy rules, performance tuning options and error handling options.

DiskBoss File Classification Copy Files

When copying files with an active file filter, DiskBoss automatically adds one or more file matching rules to the 'Rules' tab ensuring that only filtered files are copied to the destination directory. In order to delete files related to one or more file categories, select the required file categories in the categories view, press the right mouse button and select the 'Delete' menu item.

DiskBoss File Classification Delete Files

For example, in order to delete all types of document files, classify files in a disk or directory using the default file classification plug-in, select the 'Document Files' file category in the file classification results view, press the right mouse button and select the 'Delete' menu item.

File Classification Reports

DiskBoss allows one to save file classification reports into a number of standard formats including HTML, PDF, Excel, XML, text and CSV. In the simplest case, perform a file classification operation and press the 'Save' button located on the file classification results dialog. On the save report dialog, select an appropriate report format, enter a report file name and press the 'Save' button.

DiskBoss Save File Classification Report

For the HTML, PDF, text, Excel CSV and XML report formats, the user is provided with the ability to save a short summary report or a longer detailed report, which may be very long for large file systems containing millions of files. By default, DiskBoss will save a short, summary file classification report in the HTML report format, which will include a list of top-level file categories according to the selected file classification plug-in and a list of tables showing the disk space usage and the number of files per file extension, file attribute, user name, etc.

DiskBoss File Classification HTML Report

In addition, the user is provided with the ability to save file classification results to the DiskBoss native report format, which preserves all information related to each specific file classification operation and may be loaded at any time just by clicking on a report file in the DiskBoss file navigator.

Microsoft Excel Reports

Sometimes, it may be required to perform additional analysis of file classification results using external tools such as Microsoft Excel. In order to export file classification results to the Excel report format, perform a file classification operation, press the 'Save' button located on the file classification results dialog, select the 'Excel Summary' report format for a short summary report or the 'Excel Report' format for a detailed file classification report.

DiskBoss Save Excel File Classification Report

A summary Excel report will include a list of top-level file categories and a number of tables showing the used disk space and the number of files per file extension, file attribute, file creation time, last modification time, user name, etc.

DiskBoss File Classification Excel Report

A detailed Excel report will include a list of file categories according to the currently selected file categorization mode and an hierarchy of file groups and file classes sorted by the amount of the used disk space, which may be very long for large file systems containing millions of files. In order to control how many hierarchy levels and how many files per level are exported in the detailed report, press the 'Advanced Options' button located on the 'Save Report' dialog and customize the file classification report according to your specific needs.

Graphical PDF Reports

One of the most useful ways to export file classification results is to use the PDF summary or the PDF report formats. Both of these report formats include various types of graphical pie charts showing disk space usage and the number of files per file extension, file category, creation time, last modification time, user name, etc. In order to save file classification results to a PDF report file, press the 'Save' button located on the file classification results dialog and select the 'PDF Summary' report format for a short, summary report or the 'PDF Report' format for a detailed file classification report.

DiskBoss File Classification Save PDF Report

A summary PDF report will include a list of top-level categories of files according to the selected file classification plug-in sorted by the amount of the used disk space followed by a number of pie charts showing the disk space usage and the number of files per file extension, file attribute, file creation time, last modification time, user name, etc. A detailed PDF report will include an hierarchy of file groups and file classes sorted according to the used disk space, which may be very long for large file systems containing millions of files.

DiskBoss File Classification PDF Report

In addition to the hierarchy of file types sorted by the used disk space, detailed PDF reports include pie charts showing the disk space usage per file category and the number of files per file category according to the currently selected file categorization mode. For example, if the second-level file categories mode is set to categorize file classification results by the file extension, the PDF report will display pie charts showing the used disk space and the number of files per file extension.

Exporting Reports to an SQL Database

IT professionals and storage administrators are provided with the ability to submit file classification reports from multiple servers and desktop computers to a centralized SQL database. A long-term history of file classification reports allows one to gain an in-depth visibility into disk usage trends across the entire enterprise. In order to submit a file classification report to an SQL database, select the 'SQL Database' report format and press the 'Save' button.

DiskBoss File Classification Save SQL Database Report

Before exporting reports to an SQL database, open the 'Options' dialog, enable the ODBC interface and specify the name of the data source, database user name and password to use to connect to the database.

DiskBoss SQL Database Configuration

For each report in the database, DiskBoss displays the report date and time, the host name, the input directories, the total number of files and disk space and the report title. To open a previously saved report, just click on the report item in the database reports dialog.

Analyzing Disk Space Usage Per Host

DiskBoss Server and DiskBoss Enterprise provide the ability to automatically detect all servers and NAS storage devices on the network, classify files in hundreds of servers and/or NAS storage devices via the network, submit reports to the reports database and display charts showing the disk space usage per server or NAS storage device across the entire enterprise.

Analyzing Disk Space Usage Per Server

In order to analyze disk space usage per server, perform one or more file classification operations on multiple servers and/or NAS storage devices, open the 'Reports' dialog, press the 'Analyze' button and select the 'Analyze Disk Space Usage Per Host' menu item. DiskBoss will analyze all reports saved in the reports database and display the hosts analysis dialog showing the disk space usage per host.

DiskBoss Disk Space Usage Per Server

The hosts analysis dialog provides the ability to display pie charts and bars charts showing the disk space usage per server or NAS storage device according to file classification reports saved in the reports database. The user is provided with the ability to select the types of file classification operations and file system locations to analyze, edit the chart header and footer, copy the chart image to the clipboard and export graphical PDF reports including pie charts.

Analyzing Disk Space Usage Per User

DiskBoss Server and DiskBoss Enterprise provide the ability to automatically detect all servers and NAS storage devices on the network, classify files in hundreds of servers and/or NAS storage devices via the network, submit file classification reports to the reports database and display charts showing the used disk space per user across the entire enterprise.

Analyzing Disk Space Usage Per User

In order to analyze disk space usage per user, perform one or more file classification operations on multiple servers and/or NAS storage devices, open the 'Reports' dialog, press the 'Analyze' button and select the 'Analyze Disk Space Usage Per User' menu item. DiskBoss will analyze all reports saved in the reports database and display the users analysis dialog showing the disk space usage per user.

DiskBoss Disk Space Usage Per User

The users analysis dialog provides the ability to display pie charts and bars charts showing the disk space usage per user according to file classification reports saved in the reports database. The user is provided with the ability to select the types of file classification operations and file system locations to analyze, edit the chart header and footer, copy the chart image to the clipboard and export graphical PDF reports including pie charts.

IMPORTANT: In order to be able to display the disk space usage per user, the file classification operation should be configured to process and display files user names.

Classifying Files in Network Servers and NAS Storage Devices

DiskBoss allows one to scan the network, discover network servers and NAS storage devices, automatically detect all accessible network shares and classify files in hundreds of network servers and NAS storage devices. In addition, the user is provided with the ability to export the list of detected servers and NAS storage devices (including lists of network shares for each server) into HTML, PDF, text and Excel CSV reports.

Classifying Files in Network Servers and NAS Storage Devices

In order to discover all network servers and NAS storage devices on the network, press the 'Network' button located on the main toolbar and wait while DiskBoss will scan the network and show a list of detected network servers and NAS storage devices. In order to classify files in one or more servers or NAS storage devices, select the required servers and NAS storage devices and press the 'Classify' button.

Classifying Files in Network Shares

DiskBoss will show all accessible network shares hosted on the selected servers and NAS storage devices allowing one to classify files and save various types of file classification pie charts and reports. In addition, the user is provided with the ability to customize a large number of advanced file classification options allowing one to tune file classification operations for user specific needs and hardware configurations.

Batch File Classification Operations

DiskBoss Server and DiskBoss Enterprise provide the ability to execute one or more pre-configured file classification operations on all network servers and NAS storage devices on the network and generate an individual file classification report for each server and NAS storage device. In order to be able to use batch file classification operations, the user needs to pre-configure one or more file classification commands customized to generate file classification reports according to user-specific needs and requirements.

Batch File Classification Operations

In order to start a batch file classification operation, press the 'Network' button located on the main toolbar, search all servers and NAS storage devices on the network, select one or more servers and NAS storage devices, press the right mouse button and select the 'Execute Batch Command' menu item.

Select Batch File Classification Commands

DiskBoss will display a list of pre-configured file classification commands allowing one to select one or more commands to be executed on all selected servers and NAS storage devices. In addition, the user is provided with the ability to select how to save file classification reports - for each server or for each network share. By default, all file classification reports will be saved in the DiskBoss internal reports database allowing one to open each report, review results, generate various types of pie charts and export reports into a number of standard formats including HTML, PDF, text, Excel CSV and XML.

Classifying Specific File Types and File Groups

On of the most powerful capabilities of DiskBoss is the integration between file search and file classification capabilities allowing one to classify files matching one or more user-specified rules. For example, the user is provided with the ability to classify files with the file size greater than X MB that were last modified more than Y months ago or any other combination of user-specific file matching rules.

DiskBoss File Classification Rules

In order to add one or more file matching rules to a file classification operation, open the file classification options dialog, select the 'Rules' tab and press the 'Add' button. Once finished adding file matching rules, select an appropriate rules logic mode (AND/OR) and press the 'Ok' button. During the file classification process, DiskBoss will first evaluate all existing files using the specified file matching rules and classify matching files only. Files not matching the specified rules will be just skipped from the file classification process and not displayed in the file classification results dialog making it very easy to focus on files the user is looking for.

DiskBoss File Classification Negative Rules

Another option is to exclude specific types of groups of files from the file classification process using one or more negative file matching rules. For example, in order to exclude files with a specific text pattern in the file name, add a file name file matching rule, select the 'Not Contain' rule operator and enter a text pattern to search for.

Excluding Subdirectories from File Classification Process

Sometimes, it may be required to exclude one or more subdirectories from the file classification process. For example, if you need to classify files in a disk excluding one or two special directories, you may specify the whole disk as an input directory and add the directories that should be skipped to the exclude list.

DiskBoss File Classification Exclude Directories

In order to add one or more directories to the exclude list, open the file classification command dialog, press the 'Options' button, select the 'Exclude' tab and press the 'Add' button. All files and subdirectories located in the specified exclude directory will be excluded from the file classification process. In addition, advanced users are provided with a number of exclude directories macro commands allowing one to exclude multiple directories using a single macro command.

DiskBoss provides the following exclude directories macro commands:

  • $BEGINS <Text String> - this macro command excludes all directories beginning with the specified text string.
  • $CONTAINS <Text String> - this macro command excludes all directories containing the specified text string.
  • $ENDS <Text String> - this macro command excludes all directories ending with the specified text string.
  • $REGEX <Regular Expression> - this macro command excludes directories matching the specified regular expression.

For example, the exclude macro command '$CONTAINS Temporary Files' will exclude all directories with 'Temporary Files' in the full directory path and the exclude macro command '$REGEX \.(TMP|TEMP)$' will exclude directories ending with '.TMP' or '.TEMP'.

Automatic File Organizing Operations

One of the most powerful capabilities of the DiskBoss file classification engine is the ability to physically organize files on the disk according to the selected file classification plug-in. File organizing may be performed manually on file classification results displayed in the file classification results dialog or automatically by selecting an automatic file organizing mode in the file classification options dialog.

DiskBoss File Classification Actions

DiskBoss provides the user with the following advanced file organizing operations that may be performed on file classification results:

  • Build Hierarchy of Links - in this mode DiskBoss will construct an organized hierarchy of directories and populate it with links to original files according to the selected file classification plug-in.
  • Copy File Hierarchy - in this mode DiskBoss will construct an organized hierarchy of directories and populate it with copies of original files according to the selected file classification plug-in.
  • Move File Hierarchy - in this mode DiskBoss will construct an organized hierarchy of directories and move all files into that hierarchy according to the selected file classification plug-in.
  • Move Files and Link Originals - in this mode DiskBoss will construct an organized hierarchy of directories, move all files to that hierarchy according to the selected file classification plug-in and create links instead of original files pointing to files located in the organized file hierarchy.
  • Execute Custom Command - in this mode DiskBoss will execute a custom command for each file passing the name of the file and the full file category as command line arguments allowing one to implement custom file organizing solutions.

By default, file classification results are displayed in the results dialog and the user is provided with the ability to perform these operations manually by selecting one or more file categories or classes in the file classification results dialog.

In addition, power computer users and IT professionals are provided with the ability to physically reorganize files on the disk by using one of the mentioned automatic file organizing modes. In an automatic file classification mode, DiskBoss will physically reorganize files on the disk according to the selected file classification plug-in without showing the file classification results dialog.

Automatic file classification modes are especially useful in conjunction with the DiskBoss command line utility allowing one to perform automatic file classification operations from shell scripts and batch files and integrate file classification capabilities in other products and solutions. Finally, DiskBoss provides the user with the ability to design custom file classification plugins using an open and easy-to-use XML-Based format making it possible to reorganize files into custom directory structures designed according to user-specific needs.

File Classification Plug-ins

DiskBoss provides a number of file classification plugins allowing one to classify files by the file category, extension, user name, file size, last access, modification and creation dates, etc. In addition, there are a number of purpose-built file classification plugins, which are capable of detecting hidden video, music and image files.

DiskBoss File Classification Plug-ins

Each specific file classification plugins classifies files into a different hierarchy of file categories and classes. The 'Default File Classification Plug-in' is the most commonly used plug-in, which automatically recognizes more than 3,500 types of files and organizes files into a general purpose hierarchy of file categories and classes.

In addition to the file classification operations, file classification plugins are used in file search operations to search files related to one or more file categories by selecting file categories from a file classification plug-in and in second-level file categories and filters in file classification and disk space analysis operations.

Finally, DiskBoss allows one to design custom file classification plugins using an open and easy-to-use XML-Based format. The XML-Based format allows one to define a hierarchy of file categories and file classes and specify a list of file matching rules defining how to classify files for each specific file class. Custom file classification plugins may be imported to the product configuration using the DiskBoss GUI application.

DiskBoss Manage File Classification Plug-ins

The plugins management dialog provides the ability to import/export custom file classification plugins from/to XML and FLX formats. In order to open the plugins management dialog, select the 'Tools Manage Classification Plugins' menu item.

Advanced File Classification Options

DiskBoss provides a large number of advanced file classification options allowing one to customize and configure file classification operations for user-specific needs and custom hardware and storage configurations.

DiskBoss File Classification Options

The file classification options dialog allows one to control the file scanning mode, the default report title, advanced reporting options, the default file scanning filter and enable/disable automatic report generation. In addition, the user is provided with the ability to classify specific file types, control performance tuning options, exclude specific directories from the file classification process and physically reorganize files on the disk.

Pre-Configured File Classification Commands

One of the most powerful and flexible capabilities of DiskBoss is the ability to pre-configure custom file classification operations as user-defined commands and execute such commands in a single mouse click using the DiskBoss GUI application or direct desktop shortcuts.

Pre-Configured File Classification Commands

User-defined commands may be managed and executed through the commands dialog or the commands tool pane. In order to add a new command through the commands pane, press the right mouse button over the pane and select the 'Add New - File Classification Command' menu item. In order to execute a previously saved command, just click on the command item in the commands tool pane or create a direct desktop shortcut on the Windows desktop.

Classifying Files Using DiskBoss Command Line Utility

In addition to the DiskBoss GUI application, DiskBoss Ultimate and DiskBoss Server provide a command line utility capable of performing file classification operations and executing user-defined file classification commands from shell scripts and batch files. The DiskBoss command line tool is located in the '<ProductDir>/bin' directory.

diskboss -classify -dir <Directory 1> [ ... <Directory X> <Options> ]

This command classifies files in the specified disks, directories or network shares.

diskboss -classify -server <Host Name 1> [ ... <Host Name X> <Options> ]

This command classifies files in all network shares in the specified servers.

diskboss -classify -network [ Options ]

This command classifies files in all network shares in all servers on the network.

diskboss -execute <User-Defined File Classification Command>

This command executes the specified user-defined file classification command.

Parameters:

-dir <Directory 1> [ ... <Directory X> ]

This parameter specifies the list of input disks or directories to classify. In order to ensure proper parsing of input directories, directories containing space characters should be double quoted. By default, DiskBoss will generate a combined file classification report showing information about all processed disks, directories and network shares. In order to generate an individual report for each input directory, use the '-batch' command line option to enable the batch report generation mode.

-server <Host Name 1> [ ... <Host Name X> ]

This parameter specifies the list of host names or IP addresses of servers or NAS storage devices that should be classified. DiskBoss will enumerate all network shares accessible in the specified servers or NAS storage devices, perform file classification and generate reports if required. By default, DiskBoss will generate a combined file classification report showing information about all processed network shares. In order to generate an individual report for each network share, use the '-batch' command line option to enable the batch report generation mode.

-network

In the network-wide file classification mode, DiskBoss will discover servers and NAS storage devices accessible on the network, enumerate all network shares available in all detected servers and NAS storage devices, perform file classification and generate reports if required. By default, DiskBoss will generate a combined file classification report showing information about all processed network shares. In order to generate an individual report for each network share, use the '-batch' command line option to enable the batch report generation mode.

Options:

-exclude_dir <Exclude Directory 1> [ ... <Exclude Directory X> ]

This option specifies the list of directories that should be excluded from the file classification operation. In order to ensure proper parsing of command line arguments, directories containing space characters should be double quoted.

-save_html_report [ Report File Name ]

This option saves file classification results to an HTML report file. If no file name is specified, DiskBoss will automatically generate a file name according to the following template: diskboss_[date]_[time].html and save a report file in the user's home directory.

-save_csv_report [ Report File Name ]

This option saves file classification results to an Excel CSV file. If no file name is specified, DiskBoss will automatically generate a file name according to the following template: diskboss_[date]_[time].csv and save a report file in the user's home directory.

-save_text_report [ Report File Name ]

This option saves file classification results to a text report file. If no file name is specified, DiskBoss will automatically generate a file name according to the following template: diskboss_[date]_[time].txt and save a report file in the user's home directory.

-save_pdf_report [ Report File Name ]

This option saves file classification results to a PDF report file. If no file name is specified, DiskBoss will automatically generate a file name according to the following template: diskboss_[date]_[time].pdf and save a report file in the user's home directory.

-save_xml_report [ Report File Name ]

This option saves file classification results to an XML report file. If no file name is specified, DiskBoss will automatically generate a file name according to the following template: diskboss_[date]_[time].xml and save a report file in the user's home directory.

-save_report [ Report File Name ]

This option saves file classification results to a native DiskBoss report file, which may be later loaded in the DiskBoss GUI application for future review and analysis. If no file name is specified, DiskBoss will automatically generate a file name according to the following template: diskboss_[date]_[time].flr

-save_to_database

This option saves a file classification report to an SQL Database using the ODBC interface configured in the DiskBoss GUI application options dialog.

-title <Report Title>

This option sets a custom report title.

-label <Report Label>

This option sets a custom report label.

-levels <Class Hierarchy Levels>

This option sets the maximum number of class hierarchy levels to export.

-files_per_class <Files Per Class>

This option sets the maximum number of files per class to export (default is 20).

-compress

This option instructs to save compressed file classification reports.

-batch

This option enables the batch report generation mode. In the batch report generation mode DiskBoss saves an individual report file for each input disk, directory or network share.

-v

This option shows the product's major and minor versions.

-help

This option shows the command line usage information.