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I’ve started a new category called Organisation. Its good to keep all these organisation posts organised!

Note, this post is wordy and is probably only suitable to those with a slight case of OCD.

A while ago I posted on the Unclutterer forum that I would share some of my digital organising tips and my system. I was surprised people would be interested in my system!

  • I keep all of my files I will ever want to backup in one place on my computer. For old times sake I call this ‘My Documents’ In this folder I have everything divided into folders you can see below.
  • If you have files such as itunes or mamp htdocs, make use of alias’s (mac) or shortcuts (pc)
  • Make a programes folder with all the programs you use, I divide mine up between windows and mac apps.
  • I tag and label photos in lightroom (and have an alias to the lightroom catalogue backup)
  • I have a folder for all my hobbies. A folder for each one. All backed up in evernote too.
  • My home folder contains pdf’s and photos of all my bills etc. Again backed up in evernote.
  • My clients and JOBS folders are neatly organised but out of date as I’m not currently freelancing.
  • I use Dropbox for all my creative files. (except fonts) I’ll save that for another post.

 

Folder Structure

Fans of the secret weapon technique will recognise the file structure. I use it in my emails too.

  • Media
    • an alias to ‘iTunes media’ folder
  • Programs
    • Mac
    • PC
  • Photos
    • 2012
      • January Snow 2012
    • Phone Photos
      • Phone Model
    • Photo Booth (alias)
  • Documents
    • _Hobbies
      • eg/ games, japanese etc.
    • @Home
      • 2012
        • Car 2012
        • Rent 2012
    • @Uni
      • Year 1, 2, 3, 4 etc
        • module name
    • @Work
      • Company Name
        • contracts, covering letters etc
    • @Projects
      • htdocs (alias)
      • @Clients
        • Current Branding
        • Supplied Assets
        • Backups
      • @Personal
        • Same file structure as above but for all my personal projects
      • @Resources
        • Dropbox (alias)
        • Vintage scripts (copy of greymatter anyone!?)
      • JOBS
        • CONTRACTS
        • INVOICES
        • QUOTES

Backing up the files

  • I backup onto three external harddrives, flickr and dropbox.
  • Each harddrive has a coloured dot and a number on the usb, the harddrive and the plug.
  • Each harddrive has a folder and a colour label with the name of the harddrive in the root directory. EG/ RED 2. This is because some harddrives are partitioned and I set up the harddrives before I could name the partitions something sensible. but it makes it easier to orient yourself when you have three partitions.
  • Each folder listed below has a minimum of 2 backups.
  • Photos are backed up 4 times. On each harddrive and on flickr.
  • Once a folder is backed up it gets labeled green. If its half done its Orange.
  • Merging folders on the mac is easy with this tip

 

I know it seems mad but once the system is setup its really very easy to manage. You must remember to adjust the label of folders if you make amendments.

When I knew I wouldn’t be backing up for a while I simply created a TODO folder with a folder for each harddrive and create aliases to the folders to be backed up. Then you just need to find an hour or two a week to sit down and backup the files and make sure it doesn’t get on top of you!

 

Oh and the golden rule of organising. Decide on a system and stick to it!

 

Are you as mad as I am! Please share your tips on how you organise your files. I’m always looking for ways to improve the system.