How Do You Quickly Access Your Most Important Files?

Discussion in 'Community Discussion' started by HappyDude20, Oct 4, 2010.

  1. HappyDude20 macrumors 68020

    HappyDude20

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2008
    Location:
    Los Angeles, Ca
    #1
    I'm all about productivity and recently have been wanting to obtain a quick, easy access view for my most important files.

    On my MBP, all of my files rest in their appropiate Mac OS folders:

    Movies
    Music
    Photos
    Documents
    etc.

    Home movies rests in Movies, iTunes and Garageband in Music, all photos public and private in Photos, and then in Documents all my files, ranging from school, work, girlfriends (new & past), essays, resumes, etc. You name it.

    I'd imagine most people have a similar set up.

    Well, lately I've noticed that within say, Documents, I'll always go grab the same files simply cause they're what are the most important. For example, I've recently created a Finance Numbers Spreadsheet where I manually type in all my incoming and outgoing income. Secondly, another spreadsheet where at the end of the day I jot down what I ate that particular day, what hour, and nutritional information. Another document is a Pages document where I take notes on an upcoming trip to Japan. This Japan note taking document gets opened at least once every two days and has been for the past 2 months. (Many of these important files remain important for longer than a month..and considering the Finance Spreadsheet, seems apparent it'll be important for many more months to come.

    -

    I've thought about creating alias' to all these files and resting them on my MBP desktop, however admittedly get all Zen-like when it comes to a clutter free desktop. I'm not adverse to Alias' documents on my desktop, but i'm not the biggest fan either.

    -

    Here's the thing, I started this thread not really knowing the solution myself to this situation and figured seeing as many of us have Mac OS and some sort of organization system...I figured i'd ask.


    :apple::D:apple:
     
  2. notjustjay macrumors 603

    notjustjay

    Joined:
    Sep 19, 2003
    Location:
    Canada, eh?
    #2
    I'm a bit bipolar when it comes to organization, whether on my hard drive or in real life. On my computer, I have a hierarchical folder structure that tries to organize everything logically. This is something I've done ever since my high school days (the first time I set up this structure was on a 100 MB ZIP disk!)

    Top level categories included things like School, Financial, Photos, Media (movies, videos, music), Personal, etc. I'd drill it down as far as necessary (e.g. School -> High School versus University, University -> folder breakdown by course number). In my Photos directory, I'd organize them in subfolders by events and date, e.g. "2010-10-01 Weekend Retreat". "Personal" might have subfolders for my resume, letters, creative work like poetry, sketches, etc.

    If there were a few files that I accessed very often, I would probably put an alias to them on my desktop, or at least prepend their filename with a "~" symbol or something which would cause them to float to the top of the sort order in a Finder window.

    The reason I say I'm bipolar about it is because it can be a pain to keep up the filing system, and eventually I end up with hundreds of files in one folder called "To Be Sorted". I'm way overdue to go through the files in there and move them to their proper place.

    Also, I keep the folder structure backed up onto a NAS or external hard drives.
     
  3. Blue Velvet Moderator emeritus

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2004
    #3
    Aliases on the desktop? It's usually got windows covering it. Dock on the right side, folders in the dock, stacks as lists. Boom.
     
  4. HappyDude20 thread starter macrumors 68020

    HappyDude20

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2008
    Location:
    Los Angeles, Ca
    #4


    Wait.


    I like where You are going with this. Continue.
     
  5. Blue Velvet Moderator emeritus

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2004
    #5
    :D Not much more to it than that. Dock on the right side, because vertical space on a display is at a premium, especially when you design for print. Stacks as lists (set in the option setting) because all it takes is a little tap and you've got your hierarchy right there. No messing around with Expose or the sidebar.
     
  6. HappyDude20 thread starter macrumors 68020

    HappyDude20

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2008
    Location:
    Los Angeles, Ca
    #6


    I can't help but now garner some ideas. I'm thinking one stack on the right side on the dock and it can hold all of these important files I frquent.

    Very good idea.
     
  7. Melrose Suspended

    Melrose

    Joined:
    Dec 12, 2007
    #7
    The 'important' files on my system are project files for design stuff I'm working on, which is stored inside a folder called "Projects" inside "Documents", and has it's own spot in the Places sidebar. Every project has it's own folder inside Projects. Also, current projects that are underway get their own link in Places.

    Other than that, my Pictures and Movie folders are a complete mess. It's probly left over my Windows days when I managed everything manually, but I just cannot get used to iTunes/iPhoto handling my media (except for the bulk of my music.)

    The only folders that have a spot on my Dock are Applications (which I can probably remove because I always launch with Spotlight nowadays) and Downloads, which I can probably also remove. Opening a Finder window is as easy as Cmd-Tab to Finder, and Cmd-N. :)
     
  8. R94N macrumors 68020

    R94N

    Joined:
    May 30, 2010
    Location:
    UK
    #8
    I haven't created that many files yet on my Mac, but when I do I'll probably use the defaults and create sub-folders from there. Personally I find how you drag a folder onto the dock very useful.
     
  9. HappyDude20 thread starter macrumors 68020

    HappyDude20

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2008
    Location:
    Los Angeles, Ca
    #9
    Thanks for the responses. I think I'm gonna implement something along the lines of using a stack on my dock...


    In the last vie done this, however always buried the important file itself within a folder of a folder and this made me numb to ever using stacks.

    Currently on my dock I have two stacks, one documents and the other downloads. I use downloads a lot however, as mentioned above, the finder or spotlight are easier to reach when considering their keyboard shortcuts.

    As a side note for me: I think I'm gonna replace my documents stack with a projects like stack to rest on my dock, I'll give it a sweet looking icon and just drag the files themselves from there.


    This could potentially work.



    Thanks everyone!
    :D
     
  10. neutrino23 macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Feb 14, 2003
    Location:
    SF Bay area
    #10
    I do three things, with some overlap with what was already discussed.

    1. I keep a folder with aliases pointing to several frequently used files in the doc. Rollover, tap tap and it opens. This is good for about ten or so items before it gets too crowded for my taste. Even at ten items I start forgetting about the ones that are used less often.

    2. I use spotlight quite a bit for less often used items.

    3. I use Finder windows and drag frequently accessed folders to the left side of the Folder window. (Forget the name for this area.)

    For example, my journal I access daily through an alias in a folder in the doc. All of my Keynote presentations are kept in one folder. That is available in every Finder window. Applications and less often used items are accessed by Spotlight.
     
  11. No1nfoProvided macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Dec 1, 2009
    #11
    I don't do any of those things actually. I power use Spotlight. If you use a file/app so much, all you really need to know is the file name. CMD + Spacebar, then type in the name of the file. I'm a big advocate of not using the mouse, unless you absolutely have to. I use Spotlight to launch programs, look through emails, etc etc. It really has become awesome since indexing started with Leopard. I used to have Butler to do all those things, but I didn't need it after Spotlight was improved.
     
  12. Ttownbeast macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    May 10, 2009
    #12
    Applescripts. The apps I need immediately upon startup are scripted to open and the files related to them are immediately accessible--including drives on my server. I have this machine set up to mount network drives using Applescript, for example my Itunes library for this machine is not on this machine at all I have a spare HD inside my server which is elsewhere on the LAN dedicated to storage of MP3 files which I use for Itunes and it mounts on this machines desktop at startup and runs the itunes library as if it were on this machine seamlessly.
     

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