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Computers

Get help organizing the files on your Mac with Big Mean Folder Machine

Let this (currently discounted) Mac app do the heavy lifting for you.

Screenshot by Matt Elliott/CNET

I'm good up to a point when it comes to maintaining order with the files and folders on my Mac. There are a few corners, however, where piles of junk have begun to collect.

I loathe the idea of sorting out these wayward folders and, in fact, avoid it at all costs. I would rather clean out my mess of a basement than attempt to organize some of the cluttered folders on my Mac.

With Big Mean Folder Machine 2, I feel like I hired a professional cleaning service to do the job for me. Big Mean Folder Machine 2 usually costs $14.99 in the Mac App Store but is currently offered at a steep discount of only $0.99, £0.79, AU$1.29.

Big Mean Folder Machine replaces the pain of manually sifting through jam-packed folders with a wizard. There are two ways to set out:

1. Split an overloaded folder (or more) into multiple folders

2. Merge scattered files into multiple folders or into a new file hierarchy

Because I tend to just dump files into my Documents folder and a few other places, I found the splitting function more useful. You'll need to jump through a series of questions, but it's far more preferable to the alternative -- actually cleaning up your mess on your own.

Screenshot by Matt Elliott/CNET

After selecting your source folder or folders, you will need to decide whether you want to Split into hierarchies or Split into batches. The batches option lets you define a maximize folder size -- either by total size in GBs or MBs or by the number of files. The size limit is useful if you are attempting to burn files to a DVD and have a hard cap on how much data you can burn to disc.

Screenshot by Matt Elliott/CNET

Since I haven't burned a CD in about a decade, I have been using the hierarchies option. You can set up multiple hierarchies based on file name, file type or creation date. There is also a "Photo shooting date" option that will round up, for example, all the photos floating around your Mac from your that vacation you took five summers ago.

One of the last steps -- for either splitting or merging -- helps you resolve any potential file name conflicts, should it find files with the same name and attempt to put them into the same folder.

Lastly, Big Mean Folder Machine asks you if you want to move your files or copy your files. It recommends the latter because you can make sure you like the results without losing any data. And if you like what it did, you can always run the same job and choose to move the files instead of copying them.

If you require assistance with an ever-expanding photo or music library or have a job that has you creating documents faster than you can organize them, grab Big Mean Folder Machine 2 while it's at a steep discount.