I'm looking to organize my files and folders and was wondering if there was a software that fits some of these criterion:

  • Scans specified folders, and pulls them up so that I can easily identify what the file is
  • Ability to "categorize" each file, or large amounts of files at a time and then sorts those files into folders titled as their category
  • Possibly have "sub categories" that will then further sort those files into subfolders
  • Ability to 'mass edit' file names and even metafile data
  • Duplicate file detection

Most of the files that I will be working with are document files (.docx, .pptx, .pdf, etc,.) but I also want the ability to work with any filetype. Is there such a software, or combinations of software that takes care of this?

  • Windows, presumably? – paradroid Apr 14 '11 at 15:15
  • @paranoid for me yes... but was hoping that there might be a cross platform solution. – James Mertz Apr 14 '11 at 15:18
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    I wonder if there is some kind of "smart folders" (like in many email applications) but for the file system. – Nifle Apr 14 '11 at 16:55
  • @Nifle for "smart" folders belveder and hazel appear to be the best solutions, which is part of what I'm looking for, but also want to be able to "manage" files as well – James Mertz Apr 14 '11 at 17:19
  • Lol. I love how it's my meta post that is referenced in how to ask questions of this type. – James Mertz Jan 19 '15 at 14:41

belvedere might be part of the answer - it scans set directories, and organises them based on a set of user-created rules

  • Although this seems very nice for automatic changes on files that I know set rules, this really isn't a good "management" tools for current files. – James Mertz Apr 14 '11 at 15:35
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    Care to elaborate on this one @Journeyman Geek? – Ivo Flipse Apr 14 '11 at 18:25

Hazel for OS X does most of what you want. For the rest, you can invoke AppleScripts, Automator workflows and shell scripts. Or just use Folder Actions.

From the sample rules: enter image description here

Available criteria:

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Other… are the same as the Spotlight search criteria, I think.


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This Lifehacker article references some good practices (besides belvedere and hazel) to keeping your file system clean and organized...

How to Automatically Clean and Organize Your Desktop, Downloads, and Other Folders

Some other helpful links:

Getting To Done: Spring Clean-out 2: The Digital Version
Geek to Live: Organizing “My Documents”

Also consider browsing the Lifehacker tags #filestorage and organization.


Just ran across Tabbles.

Tabbles, available as an installation or a portable app, acts as its own kind of Explorer window, providing icon-adorned "Tabbles" for dragging files onto, and pulling them from. Doing so doesn't make a new copy or move the file or folder; it simply assigns that file to the project, assignment, or however you think to organize your stuff. When you access files inside their "Tabbles," you'll see the other categories they're tagged into, and get quick access to its actual file location, too.

Quote from Lifehacker - Tabbles Tags and Groups Your Files with Virtual Folders.

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