Organizing Your Computer Files

This is one thing that seriously drives me UP THE WALL!  I log onto a user’s computer to troubleshoot something and the entire desktop is FULL of files!  You go into My Documents and it’s even worse.  I don’t know how people function with so much on their desktop!  How do you find anything?  Here is how my files are set up…

Desktop – This is what I call my temp file.  I store things here when I need quick and easy access to the file in the next day or so.  As soon as I’m done with it, then I move it to a more permanent location in My Documents, or I delete it.  If you really need to keep some things on your desktop I recommend installing Fences to keep the desktop neat and organized.

My Documents – It is essential for this folder to have some organization!  Most files can be separated initially into categories (folders) of Business or Personal (unless you don’t have any “business documents”).  As you get into the personal files you can have folders for all the different hats you wear.  A folder for recipes, one for bills, one for household inventory, and don’t forget a misc file.  You don’t want to create an entire folder just for one file.  Those items should be placed in the misc folder.  In order to do this, create the folders by right clicking the white space in the folder and going to “new” then “folder”.  Once the folders have been created just start dragging the files into the right folder.  To view the majority of the files at once, right click on the white space within the folder again, and go to “view” and select “list”. 

My Pictures – These can be organized into whatever makes the most sense to you.  You can have a folder for each month of the year, or a folder for the entire year, a folder for each kid, a folder for just scenery.  You can do pretty much whatever you want in here… just do SOMETHING so you will be able to find that picture of Maddie kissing herself in the mirror.

My Music – If you have iTunes there is a fancy schmancy little checkbox that says for iTunes to keep the music organized FOR YOU!  Hooray!  I suggest just turning that on, and never worry about it again.  (Yes, yes, I know I’m betraying my beloved Microsoft with this one… but I do like iTunes)

So get to work, and get those files cleaned up!

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About the author

Sarah Werle Kimmel

Sarah Werle Kimmel is a digital parenting coach and family tech expert. She has spent the last 20 years of her career working as a Microsoft Certified IT Manager supporting over 100 small businesses. During that time she started Family Tech LLC to help families understand and manage the technology in their home. She has regularly appeared as a family tech expert on local NBC, CBS, ABC and FOX news affiliates, BYUtv and Studio 5, and has been invited all over the world from tech companies like Lenovo, Verizon, Microsoft, Dell, and Samsung. Find out more on her website

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