How do you search for files on your Mac? The Finder, right? Or, Spotlight. Or, both. Spotlight in OS X Yosemite has more tools than ever, but many of them are designed to search online as well as on Mac.
Scherlokk is one of those unusual but highly useful and usable Mac utilities that performs file searches on a Mac. How does that differ from Spotlight? It’s the same and much different at the same time. How?
Index, Meet Criteria
Spotlight on the Mac uses an index. That means it scans your Mac or connected storage devices to find files, puts them into the index for later retrieval. Spotlight can be fast, but isn’t always up to date, does not display all Mac files, and setting up search criteria is cumbersome at best.
Scherlokk searches often are faster and search criteria is easier to setup and maintain, and it’s capable of finding any file on a Mac or attached devices, including Mac volumes, flash memory cards, USB drives, and even network drives (SMB, AFP, even FTP), plus connected devices using FireWire, Thunderbolt, and more.
My favorite Scherlokk function is the search criteria. Select a location on or connect to your Mac. Enter a file name and content keywords. Set criteria details and click the big green Search button.
Scherlokk displays files in a flat or hierarchical view that more closely matches the search criteria, which can include content, file name, size range, as well as file type (photo, audio, movie, document, music, etc.). You’re also one click away from viewing each file in the search results.
One more thing. Scherlokk can also compare files, either text or binary, and display their differences. That’s a bit geeky but very useful, especially when comparing text documents or code samples.
Scherlokk is on the Mac App Store but there’s also a try-before-you-buy version. I found the app to be faster and more thorough than Spotlight on my MacBook Pro, and less intrusive because it doesn’t display all the external search options.