How do you manage your folders and files?
Thread poster: Hikmat

Hikmat  Identity Verified
Local time: 00:05
Member (2005)
English to Indonesian
+ ...
Mar 6, 2008

Hello everyone...

I just want to share and also learn from others on how you manage your folders and files.
I am currently grouping the translation projects based on Agency Name and then subsequent subfolders are the PO/Project name followed by Source/Target subfolders and TM if available.

So the structure is

My Documents
---Agency Name A
---Agency Name B
--------Project A
--------Project B

Any body share similar structuring/grouping? Or else?
Do you put invoice on a separate folder not under agency?
How about time folder? I am considering grouping projects under Month and Year as I find it easier to browse through and find the most recent files/projects. so its gonna be like this:

---Agency Name A
---Agency Name B
--------Jan 2008
-----------Project A
-----------Project B
--------Feb 2008
--------March 2008

The reason I'm writing this is to find out whether others have better ways to manage their folders, as sometimes it is quite confusing for me or others (especially if it is shared folders) to look for particular files.
Any other better systems? or perhaps software?

Thanks for sharing this
I hope this is not a re-post.

Hikmat Gumilar


Heinrich Pesch  Identity Verified
Local time: 20:05
Member (2003)
Finnish to German
+ ...
Keep it simple Mar 6, 2008

I have a seperate folder for invoices and every year I start a new folder, where are subfolders for each customer. I send invoices once a month.


Rebecca Hendry  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 18:05
Member (2005)
Spanish to English
+ ...
My system Mar 6, 2008

Hi Hikmat,

I'm sure everyone will have their own system based on their own requirements. For my most regular clients (the ones that send me several jobs per month), I use the following structure:

My documents
----Client Name
-------Month and Year
-----------Project name/reference
---------------Project files

If the project is more than one file, I still keep them all in the same folder, listing them in name order so that the source and target file (and later the BAK) for each text are next to each other, with _ESP and _ENG at the end of the file name to distinguish between them.

I keep my invoices for each client in a separate folder within that client's subfolder, and then have copies of them in another INVOICES folder.


My documents
----Client A
----Client B
--------Month and year

If I've only worked for a client once, I won't bother with the month/year folder until they send me another job, then I'll rearrange things.

My TMs (I have one for each client) are all in my TM folder in My documents ---> Translations.

As I said, I think everyone will have slightly different systems. This one works for me so far, but I'm open to suggestions!


Charlie Bavington (X)  Identity Verified
Local time: 18:05
French to English
Variation Mar 6, 2008

OK, well, I do NOT keep anything under "My Documents", it all starts under C:\

----------Invoices paid
---------------current year paid invoices here - no folder
---------------folders for previous years
---------- unpaid invoices sit here til paid
-------Project 1
-------Project 2

Translation Memories

No separate folder for source & target, I find it easier when reviewing or looking at stuff again for any reason to have the files next to each other

TMs are all together because it makes it easier for me to keep track of which ones Apsic Xbench is looking at for me at any given moment.

But you know, you just have to go with what works for you !


Anna Sylvia Villegas Carvallo
Local time: 12:05
English to Spanish
My way... Mar 6, 2008

On Drive D:\ I have a long list of folders each with a client name (I'd wish it'd be longer!) in alphabetical order. Each folder contains the following subfolders to which I assign a number by order of occurrence:

I use partition drives in case something goes wrong with Drive C:\ where my program softwares are. (You know, it's easier to upload a software when PC crashes, than recovering the history of a client. By "history" I mean jobs, invoices, payments, etc.)

These subfolders are named according to what I'm receiving: job name, date, my invoice, and whatever.

In case I need to find some specific file related to a client or clients, I use the Windows Search (START > SEARCH) and, that's it.


[Edited at 2008-03-06 18:13]


Samuel Murray  Identity Verified
Local time: 19:05
Member (2006)
English to Afrikaans
+ ...
What I do Mar 6, 2008

Hikmat wrote:
I am considering grouping projects under Month and Year as I find it easier to browse through and find the most recent files/projects...

I put every new job in a separate folder, and that folder contains the word "client" (so that I can find it easily) plus the name of the client plus the date of the deadline. Inside that folder, I put a copy of the initial e-mail I received, plus the original source files etc, and I may eventually move some of it to subfolders like "admin" or "oldstuff" etc depending on how complex the job becomes. All my jobs for a particular month go into a month folder, and then they all go into a year folder as well.

You can drag a folder in MS Windows to the very edge of your screen, and let go of the mouse, then it will create a long "bar" with the files in that folder. So I create a folder in My Documents with shortcuts to the various months, and that folder is use for my jobs bar (on the right of the screen). The jobs bar is always accessible.


Anne Koth  Identity Verified
Local time: 19:05
Member (Feb 2018)
German to English
This looks complicated, but it works for me ... Mar 6, 2008

When work comes in I create a job folder with lots of information in the title:

----Ongoing work
--------080101-1400 corr 1p fixed75 clientnameA
--------080110-1500 trans 75lines clientnameB

080101 = the date the work is due
1400 = the time it is due
corr = it is a correction
1p = one page
fixed75 = for a fixed sum of 75 euro

Putting the date in this way means it automatically puts the work in the right order, so I know what's to do next.
When I've done the work I drag and drop each job folder into another named "Done", with subfolders for each client.

---------080101-1400 corr 1p fixed75 clientnameA
---------080110-1500 trans 75lines clientnameB

Twice a month I write invoices - separate ones for proofreading and translations, so the folder name helps sort them, and if the sum to be paid is in the title, too, it saves me looking it up in my paperwork.
Finally, I put the job folder in a "Past work" folder. At the end of the year I clear it all out.

[Edited at 2008-03-06 20:28]


Vladimir Pochinov  Identity Verified
Russian Federation
Local time: 19:05
Member (2002)
English to Russian
Folder Structure in TO3000 Mar 6, 2008

I set up Translation Office 3000 (version 7, since I didn't like the revised file management approach in version 8) to create the following folder structure automatically for each project/job:

--BLSTRAN - Client's ID
----001 XL159346 - client's PO number or project number
-------Proof - print-ready files for final proofreading, or edited files to review suggested changes
-------Reference - instructions, style guides, glossaries (other than CAT termbases), etc.
-------Source - source files
-------Target - clean files
-------TM - translation memory for the project
-------Termbase - CAT glossary to be followed
-------Work-In-Progress - bilingual files
-------* The root project folder also contains client's PO, CAT analysis log file (word count).
----002 XL159362
----003 XL159371
----Admin Paperwork - application forms, tests, etc. for this client
----Invoices - all invoices for this client (I also copy invoices to relevant project folders)
--Invoices (copies of ALL invoices for ALL clients)

[Edited at 2008-03-06 22:42]


PAS  Identity Verified
Local time: 19:05
English to Polish
+ ...
Never, ever in My Documents! Mar 7, 2008

As Charlie said, but more.

No matter what structure you use, you should keep your files on a separate hard drive (not necessarily external) or at least on a separate partition.
If you use a laptop, you should have two partitions (system and files and an external HDD for backup).
Saves a lot of headaches if your system fails, easier to track, easier to back up, safer.

Otherwise: my folders go as follows:

Translations (my "root folder")
-Client name
--YYYYMMDD Job name (date first to keep it chronological)
---Completed (only if I have a lot of files in a job - I move the ones I have already completed here)

I am just getting around to taking the CAT plunge, so I haven't yet figured out where I will keep my TMs etc.
I keep my invoices in a separate folder, along with other "admin" stuff - PDF bank statements etc.

This works for me because I don't have many clients and I mostly have large jobs, but few - I issue ca. 35 invoices each year.

Pawel Skalinski

[Edited at 2008-03-07 06:55]


Hikmat  Identity Verified
Local time: 00:05
Member (2005)
English to Indonesian
+ ...
Thank you Mar 8, 2008

Thank you all for's been a fruitful one...
With these tips I might need another options for my Windows Explorer..
Have a great (working?) weekend...

Hikmat Gumilar
Jakarta Indonesia


Local time: 19:05
French to Dutch
+ ...
My structure Mar 10, 2008

Always under c: as Charlie said (don't remember why)

---a To be done (everything stays here until it has been done. The "a" is there in order to have it on the top of my files)
---Glossaries (most of them are in .XLS)
---Invoices2008, accounting etc.

Each year I make a new folder called Clients200X, and at the end of the year I have about 50-60 subfolders in it. Same for Invoices200X. The six ongoing folders are saved regularly onto another disk (Clients2008 copy March10, etc.).

The only problem occurs if two or more intermediate companies are working for the same end client or if I am translating also directly for the same end client.

Whatever the file structure, a disk search tool such as Copernic is extremely useful.


To report site rules violations or get help, contact a site moderator:

You can also contact site staff by submitting a support request »

How do you manage your folders and files?

Advanced search

BaccS – Business Accounting Software
Modern desktop project management for freelance translators

BaccS makes it easy for translators to manage their projects, schedule tasks, create invoices, and view highly customizable reports. User-friendly, integration, community-driven development – a few reasons BaccS is trusted by translators!

More info »
Manage your TMs and Terms ... and boost your translation business

Are you ready for something fresh in the industry? TM-Town is a unique new site for you -- the freelance translator -- to store, manage and share translation memories (TMs) and glossaries...and potentially meet new clients on the basis of your prior work.

More info »

  • All of
  • Term search
  • Jobs
  • Forums
  • Multiple search