February 25, 2013

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In Part 3 I established some of the areas that were contributing to my computer organization issues, it's time to make a plan, making sure to keep these key points in mind:
  • I'm a pack rat,
  • I'll use it for both work and play,
  • ummmm, that lazy thing I mentioned earlier
I have already decided to partition my notebook hard drive into 2 partitions.
/OS Partition
+-- Program Files (default windows program directory)
+-- Tools (all those executables that I never quite know where to put, they go here now ie: ANT, Vizzy, eclipse)
+-- Users (default windows Users directory)
+-- Windows (OS directory)

/DATA Partition
+-- Documents (mostly personal stuff goes here: resumes, recipes, knitting patterns, cat food research, etc...)
+-- Libs (shared libraries, SDKs, apis, nerdy code stuff)
+-- Media (books, podcasts, photos, music, videos) 
+-- Projects (a combination of work and personal projects)
+-- Workspace (where I save all my IDE workspace files ie: eclipse, Flashbuilder, more nerdy code stuff)
+-- Web (almost all of my projects are web based so I have a LAMP stack set up here for local testing)

My external BACKUP drive is laid out very simply as well:
/DOCTOR - disk image and recovery tools
/TARDIS - weekly backups
/GALLIFREY - encrypted and password protected partition for sensitive information

I think I've managed to keep the work files segregated from my personal files, we'll see if this holds true over the next few months. My projects and work related folders are fairly well organized and aside from out-dated code or projects sticking around longer than they should, I don't require any tools or scripts to help maintain them. One problem I used to have was when I updated third-party code libraries, I never really planned where I should put them, so they ended up in various places around my computer. A few years ago I began to store them by version number, or by date if no version is available. As the version numbers increase, I can check to see if any of my projects depend on the older versions and delete old code that is no longer needed.
Here's a snapshot of my libs folder

I should actually divide the Libs folder by language... and may do that when I have extra time to update all my project references, but otherwise I find this structure works very well for me.

The Media folder is still a work in progress. We've moved most of the audio & video media to our NAS drive to serve up our entertainment to the Home Theatre. I'm starting to keep a local copy of only the files I want to sync up to a device, or sometimes I might want something to watch while traveling, although my tablet is quickly taking over as my device of choice when I travel these days. +Jordan is also working on a possible solution to get Calibre running on one of the Raspberry Pi's so we can move all of our books there and be able to sync them to any of our devices. Next are my photos... all my photos. I had started off saving them by date, over 13 years ago, and I find this system is starting to fail me, just opening the root folder takes a while and my mind isn't as sharp as it used to be. I need some additional tagging to better maintain, and more importantly search, through all my photos. I'm currently researching some tools to help manage them and will report back in another post on what I find. If you'd like to suggest something you think I should try, please let me know.

I have purposely left out the two most active areas on my computer, the Desktop & Downloads folders. They are constantly changing and are where my pack ratitude and laziness shine through, I will need more than mere folder structure to keep them under control. In my next post I will investigate a few tools to help me keep those folders organized and under control.



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