Happy Birthday TreeSize!

TreeSize turns 25 years old

Launch of a success story.

Inside JAM Disk Space Management Current Newsletter
03.11.2021

The hard disk is full! What causes it? Just open TreeSize and have a look... There we go! In the depths of drive C a "Temp" folder is bursting - it accumulated more than 20 gigabytes of data garbage. The associated program has been uninstalled for months, so the folder can go. Right click. Delete. Done!

It couldn't be easier - for already more than two decades. TreeSize turns 25 this year! More than enough reason to take a moment and reflect on 25 exciting years full of development stages and features. But what was it that actually started the TreeSize success story?

 

From the idea to becoming a must-have on every computer: TreeSize throughout the ages

What today is the world's most successful tool for managing storage space on Windows computers once started very small: As a practical project by today's CEO Joachim Marder, called Joey. He invented TreeSize and is the founder of JAM Software.

This has really proven itself: The tree view has been included since V1 on Windows 95.

 

At the time, Joey still was a computer science student, and his idea coincided with the release of Windows 95 and the Internet, which was still brand-new to home users: "At the university, we had the opportunity to use the Internet early on in our computer science classes. A real Internet hype was going on," Joey remembers.

A world apart: JAM Software's first web presence in 1998.

 

" People really downloaded and installed all kinds of things - regardless of whether they needed the programs or not. Windows 95 had already taken up a lot of space on the hard disk, so if you didn't keep an eye on your disk space, the drive was pretty soon full again.

The need for a practical project, the overflowing hard drives of adventurous surf pioneers and the Internet as a software platform ignited: TreeSize was born.

Box monitors instead of curved displays: The first TreeSize workstation in 1998.

 

Joey explains that in the early Internet, people relied on large lists to learn about and distribute new software: "That was a few years before Google and the big search engines existed, there were websites with large software directories. I was really curious to see how users would react to my tool, and I enjoyed getting feedback from users, evaluating it, and incorporating it into the program."

Then, one day, there came a moment when TreeSize outgrew itself: "The download numbers for TreeSize started shooting up over time. I used to host everything on the university server. Because of all the traffic, I started receiving queries from the computer center. At this point a website had to be set up pretty quickly.

TreeSize grows and JAM grows with it: Joey with his team in JAM’s new office in 2003.

 

No sooner said than done: Joey dared to move to his own domain - in 1997 it went live for the first time. With that, TreeSize Free was born, as well as TreeSize Professional and JAM Software. To this day, TreeSize Free remains close to Joey's heart: "We will definitely continue to pursue TreeSize Free as a project. I think it's important to offer a free version in addition to the commercial one."

TreeSize Free soon will be joined by TreeSize Professional with even more analysis options.

 

The launch of our Disk Space Managers

From now on, TreeSize was not just a hobby project, but a professional tool with fans around the world. But as the customer base continued to grow, TreeSize also reached its limits: For enterprise customers with large server environments, a desktop solution like TreeSize was not suitable.

Started as a research project, JAM began to develop a solution exactly for this use case. A database-driven disk space manager with background service was required: SpaceObServer entered the scene. Thus our product group around File & Disk Space Management was enlarged by a tool that allows continuous monitoring of disk space on different servers. With its Web Access SpaceObServer also offers a convenient access to the analysis data via the web.

Besides the analysis of storage space, TreeSize in its Professional Edition also comes with a powerful file search. In addition to the simple file search, TreeSize Professional also enables the active search for duplicate files - who are also called file duplicates. However, if you want a more focused tool for a high-speed file search, you'll find it in UltraSearch. The third tool in the bunch is known for its extremely fast search function, which can extend across all mounted drives.  Clever filters help to optimize the search.

So, our portfolio of disk space managers has increased over the years - but when it comes to user feedback from our community, all has remained the same. Moreover, we have created a platform specifically for user feature requests!

 

The community participates: Agile software development from the outset

Joey remembers the early days of JAM: " Back in the day, there were a lot more programs that were not very user-oriented or had very poor user guidance. That's why it's always been important to us to develop very close to the user. Especially during the beta versions, i.e. before V1, I already followed the Scrum principle back then. In other words, we simply put out what was available, then rapidly collected feedback from users and improved the software directly. Two weeks later, a small update follows."   

Joey laughs:" It was a one-person scrum, in a sense. For me, and later for the team, it really gave us great value that our work was so well received and appreciated by the community."

From Windows 95 to today: TreeSize is up and running on Windows 11!

 

Today, getting feedback is a little easier on JAM because we launched our Feature Voting platform a while ago: A place where users can suggest new features for our products and vote on existing suggestions.

What gets the most votes there is taken into account in development: "It clearly flows into our roadmap planning what customers vote for. We make a realistic comparison between our own ideas for an upcoming release and wishes from the feature voting platform," Joey says. "We're really glad to have the Feature Voting platform. Because our own assessments were sometimes a little different than the community votes. The users help us prioritize new projects, respectively."

Do you also have good ideas and want to leave your own footprint in TreeSize or maybe our other products? If so, participate on the Feature Voting platform yourself. We look forward to welcome you in to our community!

You don't have a specific feature request, but would like to provide feedback on TreeSize? Please use the contact form to get in touch with our TreeSize team!

What are your previous experiences with TreeSize?

TreeSize has made a few steps in its development. Nevertheless, the core of our tool has remained the same: TreeSize helps both casual users and power users to keep track of files on their system thanks to simple user guidance and strong features.

Well, now we want to know exactly: What are your own experiences with TreeSize? To get to the bottom of this question, we have started a survey on the occasion of TreeSize's 25th birthday. Please take a look. We are curious to learn more about your very own experiences with TreeSize!

 

 

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Blog author Hendrik Christ

Hendrik

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