8 Easy Ways to Keep Google Drive Clutter-Free – Geek . Review

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Whether you use Google Drive at work, school, or anything in between, keeping it organized and clutter-free can be a real challenge. However, if you want to do some occasional preventative maintenance, we think these tips can help you stay on top of things.

Not everyone realizes how powerful Google Drive is either. You can use it to house any documents you create, such as spreadsheets, word documents, slide shows, and forms. It also gives you the ability to upload and store your own files and share them with other users (or access files that others have shared with you). But if you’re not diligent, these files can become very disorganized and messy in a jiffy, leaving you standing on top of an unimportant digital pile.

Here are the best ways to keep Google Drive organized, clutter-free, and easy to access, navigate, and use:

Create cleaning reminders

Don’t wait for Google to send you an email alerting you that there is only a function or so left on your storage plan – set up frequent recurring notifications that will remind you regularly to clean up your Google Drive.

If you use Drive every day (or at least a few times a week), we recommend setting up a monthly or quarterly reminder. If you only use it a few times every month or two, you probably don’t need reminders that often; You can just clean Google Drive once or twice a year.

Delete any unwanted files

We think that’s obvious, but we’d be remiss if we didn’t mention it anyway. If you see any large or unwanted files, Gmail attachments, or media files, consider giving them the boot…or at least moving them to another cloud storage service or external storage device.

We’ve created a comprehensive guide to freeing up more space in Google Drive, it will help you decide which files are taking up the most space and how to find (and then delete) your oldest files that you may not be using anymore. A good rule of thumb is that if it’s been a few years since you last accessed the file (and there’s nothing too important, like a tax document), you should probably be able to delete it.

Use folders

Multiple folders inside a folder in Google Drive
Susan Humphreys

It’s easy for any file storage system to get those messy Wild West vibes, but you don’t have to live that way. Creating and using folders in Google Drive is a great (and easy!) way to keep your files organized and easily accessible.

You are free to name and organize the folders however you want of course, but we recommend keeping things simple, short and logical. Try to stick to naming folders by project, date, or other relevant metric, such as “January_Reports” or “2022_TuitionPayments”.

To create a folder, either click on the “+New” button on the left sidebar in Google Drive and select “Folder.” Alternatively, you can right-click anywhere in the program (except for an existing file or folder), and a menu will appear with the option to create a new folder or document. From there, a smaller box will appear allowing you to name this folder.

If you have a lot of files inside a particular folder, we suggest creating additional folders inside that original folder. Google doesn’t put a limit on that, so go ahead and create some for images, word documents, reports, spreadsheets, or anything else.

Do a better job of naming files and folders

Everyone is lazy about naming files from time to time. Who among us does not have a file named “asdfsfdsdf?” And while that, um, a Technically The job name, it doesn’t tell you what that file is, and makes it hard to search for it. It just looks junk.

By taking an extra five seconds to give each file or folder a proper, at least semi-functional name, like “Q1_Finances2022” or even “May_ToDoList”, you can stay much more organized and less stressed. Trust us on that.

Examples of horrible file names you shouldn't use.
Susan Humphreys

Also, keep any naming conventions you create consistent across all of your documents. For example, if you have to send a weekly report to your boss, you can do so by putting the document type first, then the date, such as “WeeklyReport_050122” or “WeeklyReport_050822”.

Get rid of duplicate files

Sometimes you create a file, forget where you stored it, and then start creating it again somewhere else in Google Drive. Sometimes you want a duplicate of your original file in a different, but still convenient folder. We’re not here to judge you, but it can take up space and make a mess.

We recommend that, where possible, you have only one copy of any given file. Not only will this save you some confusion, but it will also help you free up some space in your Drive, which is hard to argue with!

Google recently implemented a new feature that “deletes” duplicate files and files It leaves a shortcut in place, in an effort to help users simplify and improve their storage. This feature allows you to choose where the original file is located (such as the exact folder the file is under, if any) and replace any other instances with a shortcut.

Get used to organizing all the new files

Did you just create a new document? Go ahead and put it in place before you move on! Organizing your Google Drive is one thing, but if you don’t actively maintain it, it will get cluttered and messy again, and nobody wants that!

Also feel free to create a miscellaneous folder for any files that don’t seem to have a home elsewhere. This is better than just leaving your files unorganized on your Google Drive homepage, and it will help you feel like you’re keeping your organization, too.

Use folder colors

Did you know that you can colorize your folders in Google Drive? For some people, colors can help you stay organized and prioritize folders (like using green for finances, for example). Google gives you 24 colors to choose from, which should be enough to cover your needs there.

Susan Humphreys

Put a star on important documents

Some files are more important or timely than others, and luckily, Google makes it easy to distinguish them by starring them. Any starred files are then added to the “Starred” tab in the Google Drive sidebar (between “Recent” and “Trash”). You can still find and access any starred files wherever they were originally located; However, the starred tab only lists these files, making the process of finding them a little easier.

To star a file from any Google Drive page, right-click on it and select “Add to Star”. If you are already in a document, click the Star icon next to the title box. Likewise, if you want to unstar a file, click its Star icon in any of those situations.



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