A Guide on How to Manage Files on Your MacBook

Managing files on a MacBook should not be a problem if you have a system. However, it is easier said than done. Not everyone is willing to bother with creating a file management routine and making things easier for themselves.

If you notice that having a disorganized computer leads to poorer overall productivity, take some action and create a strategy to manage files on the computer. The tips below should help with that.

Declutter the Desktop

Let’s start with the desktop. Keeping documents and some application shortcuts on the MacBook’s desktop might seem convenient, but they will spell trouble for the computer’s performance.

Besides, when you have too much stuff on the MacBook’s desktop, it sometimes becomes too difficult to find certain folders and files. Thus, for both computer performance and organization, make sure that your laptop’s desktop is clutter-free.

Get in the Habit of Backing Up Data

MacBooks are reliable, but there is still a possibility that something might happen to their hardware, such as the drive, which can lead to data loss. Potential malware attacks and you deleting files accidentally could also happen.

You can learn how to back up MacBook data at setapp.com/how-to/how-to-backup-your-mac. Also, keep in mind that you should set up the process in a way that your files are backed up regularly. 

Follow a File Naming System

If there are many files that you need to use throughout your day, make sure that you name them properly. Create a file naming system that you can follow. 

For example, if you have to edit photos and there are multiple pictures in a single folder, instead of naming them IMG_1, IMG_2, etc., use words to describe the picture. If it is a person, use their name. If there is a significance to the date that the picture was taken on, use that day in the file’s name.

The bottom line is that you need to follow a file naming convention that you can understand and reduce the odds of missing or failing to locate an important file.

Create Folders Within Folders

Navigating through folder directories can be a bit bothersome, but it is still better than keeping hundreds if not thousands of files in the same folder.

Even if you have to take some time to create different categories and subcategories for your files in the form of folders, you should still do it for the sake of organization. 

Take Notes

Sometimes, it is easier to take notes and keep information in a text document that you can use as a reference. For instance, if you need to keep a specific folder on a computer and transfer it later to someone else, create a memo that will remind you about this.

Think of taking notes on your computer as those sticky notes you use to write down information and place on the computer’s screen or your desk. 

Delete Junk

It is no secret that the fewer files there are on a computer, the easier it is to manage the data. Some people go overboard and clutter their MacBook’s drive with random junk, such as old email attachments or other files they downloaded from the internet. 

Installing redundant localization files together with applications is also a common problem because it is easy to miss a box that asks whether you want to install localization files.

There are those who hoard large media files instead of sticking to Netflix, Hulu, and other streaming platforms.

Finally, temporary files like app extensions, plugins, caches, and old system backups also consume drive space and put a strain on the overall MacBook performance.

As a rule of thumb, you should get in the habit of removing redundant MacBook files to improve its performance and have less clutter to deal with when managing data.

Use the Search Feature

It might seem obvious, but some Mac owners still miss the search feature on their computers. If you struggle to locate a particular file, there are two ways to solve your problem.

One can use Finder or Spotlight to locate files on a MacBook. However, you will still need to remember the name of the file you want to locate.

Transfer Some Data to Cloud Storage

Sometimes, it is easier to keep some files away from the MacBook. Relocating data to iCloud would mean that you can access the files not just from the MacBook but your other Apple devices, such as iPhone and iPad (if you have them).

It is also worth mentioning that cloud storage is a great alternative for those who struggle with the computer’s disk space. If there is not enough free storage on your Mac’s drive, transferring some files to iCloud should come in quite handy.

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