C-Command Software Forum

EagleFiler guidance

I just started using EagleFiler and I’m having trouble figuring out what to use it for and, equally important, what not to use it for. I read Matt Neuburg’s helpful article in TidBits but I still don’t understand how I decide whether or not to put an item into EagleFiler. Any advice?

Also, the tags feature in EagleFiler is very attractive, but I’m afraid I won’t be completely consistent in applying tags to my records. Will this make tags more of a hindrance than help? If I use tags in a search and some relevant record has the tag omittedI assume I’ll miss it. Am I better off avoiding tags entirely if I can’t do it perfectly?

I guess I have a partial understanding of the logical structure that I can build with EagleFiler and I am somewhat daunted by the challenge of fitting all my information into it, but I am particularly unclear about how having all that information in that logical structure will benefit me. I think a collection of use scenarios would be very helpful.

Thanks very much.

Hmm…I wrote a fairly extensive response to you yesterday, that somehow didn’t get posted. I’ll try again…

I’m still figuring out exactly how EF works best for me, but I can share some of how I’m using it. EF is particularly helpful for me in collecting information from disparate sources (e-mail, web pages, etc.) about related events.

For better or worse, I have several different EF libraries, for different kinds of things I want to organize. For example, I have a “Web Receipts” library, a “Meetings” Library, and a “Bible Studies, Sermons, etc.” Library.

My Web receipts library is on an encrypted disk image and contains receipts from on-line purchases, e-mails concerning those purchases, e-statements from my bank accounts, my work expense vouchers, etc.

My “Meetings” Library keeps documents, notes, e-mails, etc. related to the meetings of various groups of which I am a part.

I’m not perfect about using tags, either, but I still find that feature helpful. Remember that each EF library comes with a built in smart folder for “Untagged,” so you can see your untagged items quickly. One caveat, though: Many items are automatically tagged “unread” when they are brought into Eagle Filer. So you might want to create an “unread” smart folder that lets you periodically process those items.

One thing I do to help simplify tagging and filing is make use of the “Actions” tab in the Edit Smart Folder window: I can create Smart Folders that not only let me group related items together, but that also executes actions on any items I drag to that smart folder. So I can drag a new credit card statement to a Smart Folder, and the smart folder will tag it for that credit card company, the year, and then move it to the right folder in my organization.

I hope that helps at least a little bit.


I think it kind of depends on the sorts of information you have.

I am not attempting to fit everything in EF. For info/files that already have a good repository, I store them there.

mp3 -> itunes
photos -> photo apps (lightroom/iphoto/etc)

Context of the files is also important. I’m finding that EF is perfect for some file types when related to work, but not if they relate to ‘home’. And vice versa. For example, at work I have a lot of journal articles that I keep track of. While I could store them in EF, it’s better for me to keep them organized differently in a way that is more compatible with Bibdesk. On the other hand, I have a couple of pdf articles pertaining to a hobby of mine - EF is perfect for that since I don’t really need to keep track of hundreds of articles.

To an example of the opposite case, I do photography for a hobby and have a ton of images from that. Gigabytes. It’s much more efficient for me to have a structured file system and organize things outside of EF. For work though, I get a lot of random images (self generated or random sources) and while some are stored elsewhere in appropriate places (with a draft of an article for example), it’s nice to be able to stick them in EF, tag them, and write a description for them, and file them alongside of related material.

One thing I will say I’m using EF for is the backlog of 15 years of digital ‘junk’ I’ve carried along with me. Stuff that I don’t really have a use for now but don’t want to delete. Stuff that has lived in folders called “Old Computer” which was stored in a different folder called “Old Laptop”. I finally have the motivation to go through some of it, sort it, tag/label it, etc., and generally make it more accessible to me in the future.