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December 28, 2012 10:42 AM   Subscribe

Is there a program that will help me locate/tag/organize files on our server?

I have inherited ten years' worth of content and collateral that's scattered across multiple drives, with zero consistency in naming conventions. This includes photos, docs and (perhaps most crucial in the short-term) InDesign files. Most of this stuff is on our (Windows-based) server.

Example: Salesperson One needs (at the last minute, naturally) a presentation that is similar to something done a few years ago. They *might* have a printout of a pdf. IF the (recently terminated) graphics person DID save the files, they could be on the Sales drive. Or the Marketing Drive. They could be in a folder called "Events," or one called "2009" or any one of the hundreds and thousands of folders and subfolders. Right now I'm the person people come running to, and am acting as liaison to our freelance graphics person.

This is not my primary responsibility but I would be GOLDEN if I could find a solution to this and it would save me hours a week trying frantically to locate files that may or may not exist. Something that does not involve the IT "DEPARTMENT" is best.

For my own primary responsibilities, I'd love to be able to cross-reference things like photos so they are tagged by their actual location and then by things like "beach" or whatever. Suggestions for designing a logical organization system would be great, too. Windows search is nigh onto useless.

Please help, MeFi. And thanks so much.
posted by 2soxy4mypuppet to Computers & Internet (3 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Linky. Now you know what you're searching for, at least. Good luck...
posted by Leon at 10:45 AM on December 28, 2012 [2 favorites]

This isn't a good final solution, but I use Search Everything as a replacement for the useless mess that is Windows search.

It only looks at file names (and optionally at the path), so no tagging. But it

- looks at every directory (unlike WinSearch), unless you explicitly tells you not to
- looks at every type of file
- doesn't take a lot of setup. You start it the first time and let it index the drive (I think it took 10-15 minutes for my 350 Gb drive). It then tracks changes.

The UI is minimal, but it is whip fast. As an example, I've got 500,000 files, and it finds the one file with "cheese" in the name faster than I can type.

So if you're currently wasting hours looking for these guys, spending an hour to set this up could be worth it.

The one big drawback is that it's kind of a vanity project run by one guy, so changes come at his whim. Also, it currently needs Admin privileges to run, so you might have some problems either running it, or getting IT's permission to run it, in your office.
posted by benito.strauss at 3:10 PM on December 28, 2012

You could install sharepoint and start cataloguing and managing content that way. sharepoint search is significantly better than windows search, and the metadata and tagging features make finding and organising content much easier. A fair bit of work to get the content catalogued though.
posted by the noob at 4:54 PM on December 28, 2012

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