Tips on Managing Files on MacBook

Managing files on a MacBook is not as simple as one might expect, especially if you have switched from Windows and are still not too familiar with macOS UI. 

Thankfully, there are ways to create a decent file management strategy and have fewer worries while using your Mac. Let’s take a look at these tips below.

Get in the Habit of Backing up Data

Even though macOS is quite reliable, there might still be some lapses from your end where you delete files accidentally. For example, you might drag a file in the Trash Bin and empty it without realizing that you put the wrong file in it.

There are ways to recover deleted files in the Trash Bin, as one can find in the article. However, the process can be a bit bothersome, and it would be more efficient to get in the habit of backing up your MacBook files.

You can transfer files to iCloud or an external hard drive. The former offers five gigabytes of free storage with an option to extend it by paying a monthly fee. Moving files from MacBook to iCloud and vice-versa is simple. Besides, you can sync your iCloud account with other Apple devices, such as iPhone and iPad, and access iCloud data from them.

As for the external hard drive, you will need to combine the accessory with Time Machine to back up Mac files. The first backup might take a while, particularly if the laptop has many files. On the other hand, future backups will not require as much time because Time Machine will not have to process old files. Instead, it will back up new or modified data.

Remove Files Permanently for Free Storage

If there is too much clutter on the MacBook’s drive, you will run out of free storage. When that happens, the computer will start to underperform. 

Macs are not the greatest when it comes to the overall available storage, so every free gigabyte helps. 

The important thing to note is that you should remove unwanted files permanently. After you drag them into the Trash Bin, remember to empty it. Or, as an alternative, hit the Option + Command + Delete keyboard shortcut after selecting a file or multiple files you want to remove from the system. A confirmation popup will ask you to confirm if you want to delete files permanently. 

Declutter Mac’s Desktop

It is convenient to keep documents and app shortcuts on a computer’s desktop. However, every desktop shortcut adds to the performance problem. Switching between the desktop and other tabs requires the MacBook system to render desktop icons, which puts a toll on the laptop’s resources.

Icons on the MacBook’s desktop also slow down the loading speed after you boot the computer. 

Declutter your Mac’s desktop so that the only shortcuts available can be found on the Dock. Doing so will help with the computer’s performance. And in case you find it difficult to get used to not having access to documents on the desktop, remember to use the search feature.

Keep Tabs on Installed Applications

Some MacBook owners go a bit overboard by installing too many applications. If an app becomes useless, there is no need to keep it around, especially if the computer has storage problems. You can even download and install an app later if you really need it.

It is also worth noting that some applications come with localization files that take a significant amount of drive space. Thus, removing some apps might free up more disk space than expected.

One final thing to note is that apps create temporary system junk. While cache, plugins, extensions, and backups do not take as much space, they are still files that the system has to process. Therefore, when you remove an app, make sure to get rid of temporary system junk as well. For that, a tool like CleanMyMac X would do a solid job.

Change the Default Downloads Location

If you forget about downloaded files, switch the default location. Email attachments and other data you download online can accumulate and remain in the Downloads folder for a while before you remember about them.

Instead, change the default location to the MacBook’s desktop. If you download files on the desktop, you will notice them right away, which makes deleting unnecessary files easier.

Avoid Hoarding Large Media Files

The last bit of advice is about hoarding large media files on the MacBook. It might be convenient to keep music, movies, and TV shows on the computer, but such an approach is not great for the MacBook’s drive.
Instead of not taking advantage of or even canceling your Netflix account and other streaming services, you should use them to the fullest. Entertainment is available with a few clicks, and it would be a waste not to utilize streaming platforms for one’s media needs.


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