A Beginner’s Guide To Organizing With Folders On Your Mac (#1641)

A Beginner’s Guide To Organizing With Folders On Your Mac (#1641)


If you’re new to Mac you may not yet have
a good system for organizing your files. Folders are the main tool that you have for
organizing things on your Mac so you’re going to want to create folders. As many as you need to get things organized
and know where things are. Now typically you store all your documents
in the Documents folder on your Mac. This could be either the iCloud Documents
folder or your local hard drive Documents folder. They appear to be the same thing. So you want to use that as the main place
where you store stuff. But you don’t want to just throw a ton of
stuff in your Documents folder. You want to create folders that you can use
to organize things. For instance, say if you have a bunch of files
that you use for work. You may want to create a new folder that just
has work files in it. So you can create a new folder in one of many
ways. The simplest to remember is to go to File,
then New Folder. See the keyboard shortcut there is Shift Command
N. This create a new folder here and you can
see it’s called untitled folder by default. The name is automatically selected so this
is a good time to actually rename that folder because you can just start typing. So I’ll call it Work. I may also have some personal stuff that I
want to store on my Mac. So let’s go and create a new folder and we’ll
call it Personal. I can put files in here based on whether it’s
something that has to do with work or personal stuff. So for instance, I can go into my Personal
folder, I’ll go in here and it’s empty, and I can put some files in there. But maybe I’m going to have a lot of files
in my Personal folder. So I’ll want to actually have folders inside
my Personal folder as well. I’ll create a new one and I’ll call this Home
Expenses and I’ll store receipts and information about things having to do with my house. I’ll create a new folder called Hobbies and
I’ll store things in there for hobbies. Now I may want to have folders inside the
Hobbies folder as well for different hobbies that I have. You can continue to create as many folders
as you like. In different views, like say in Column View,
you can see more obviously what I’ve got. I’ve got my main documents folder and I’ve
got Personal, I’ve got Work, and I’ve got a few other things like an Interesting Articles
folder, Projects folder, that kind of thing. Under Personal I’ve got Hobbies and Home Expenses. I can easily move files between these if I
want by dragging and dropping. I can open up, say, multiple windows to do
that. So I’ve got here’s my Hobbies folder and I’ll
do Command N or File, New Finder Window and I can go into my Work folder and I can drag
and drop items between these. It’s pretty easy to do that. You can also in the Column View easily drag
and drop things. So, for instance, in my Projects folder I
have a file here. I can drag it into Work. From Work I can drag into Personal. I can wait a second and now it reveals the
folders inside there and I can drop into Hobbies. So it’s easy to move files around. But you’re definitely going to want to create
a set of folders and subfolders and continue to work on them. Modify them. Break them out. Because as I said maybe you might have a Hobbies
folder and you put all your files in there having to do with your hobbies. But eventually, maybe, it gets too big and
you can’t find things so maybe you create subfolders one for each hobby and then you
drag and drop the files in there to create a better organizational structure. A typical Mac user is always creating new
folders, always moving files around in different folders, and getting things organized just
the way that you want them. It’s a personal preference as to how you set
it up. People may have one folder with a ton of files
and other people may have dozens or even hundreds of folders each with just a few files in them. You can easily rename folders just by clicking
on them, select them, and hitting return and then typing a new name. You can, in Icon View, arrange the folders
like you want as long as you don’t have any special arrangement settings. I have Arranged set to None so I can organize
them like that. You can drag folders inside to other folders
and you can also pull them out the same way usually having two different Finder windows
open to drag them. Or you can do it in Column View. For instance in Column View I can go into
Projects and I can drag Project A into the Personal folder there. So you have a lot of organizational ability
through drag and dropping and renaming. Deleting a folder is as simple as just selecting
it and then using Command and Delete to move it to the Trash or just dragging it to the
Trash there. But, keep in mind when you delete a folder
it deletes all of the files and folders inside it. So you want to be careful when doing that.

Dereck Turner

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