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Organizing a network shared drive - got wisdom?

  • Hiya Techsoupers!

    I’m moving to the Office of Grants Management in my agency and they’ve asked me to help manage their knowledge. One of the things I’d like to do is to make their Department Shared drive more efficient and make things more findable.

    Do any of you know about file management and structure and best practices around managing that kind of resource well?

    The drive size is: 7.57 GBs, Size on disk is 6.94 GBs. The disk contains 23,295 files in 3,254 folders. It was created on 9/3/06 at 2:50 pm. ;-)

    Please alert me if this is off-topic. I looked at the list of forums and this seemed closest to my question.

    Whaddya know? Feel free to write off-forum, if you're more comfortable doing that.

    Brad Lewis

    Brad Lewis


  • Brad if youare are sharing a drive and assigning it a letter start with drive Z and work your way upwards as you add more shared resources. I have found that some USB devices try to grab the first available drive letter but only check the local machine assignments.

    This means that there can be a conflict if a drive letter running down the alphabet, commonly E or F is assigned to a network resource.

    Peter Cheer
    Information Management Officer Pakistan Humanitarian Forum

    web site

  • @Peter - thanks a lot! That makes sense and will be helpful in thinking about naming conventions. I'm open to any other thoughts about naming conventions within the drive or about how to organize the info, too! Much appreciated,


    Brad Lewis


  • A couple of thoughts:

    - You have a little more than 1 GB of space on the drive. It may be time to start deleting or archivingfiles to free up space, or think about expanding your storage options. With even Terabyte drives going so cheap, there should not be much to think about. But given your modest data accumulation up to this point, it may not be needed for a long time.

    - The other consideration is if you are making backups of the drive? It's about 5 years old now and failure could be around the corner or many, many years off. That it will fail at some point is a given so make sure you are covered.

    - I don't think anyone can tell you how the data should be organized without knowing what you have and how you are currently using it. Creating a more logical structure may make sense, if it's a disorganized mess of folders. But if you do that how will anyone be able to find anything they are used to finding?

    I would start with an outline of how your organization is structured or how you think the data should be organized.

    /home menu




    /customer service



    There are search applications like the Zoom search engine that can index the content of many different kinds of files and make finding things fairly easy, even on what you have. It can work without a web server and you could actually put a little intranet on that drive and make it easy for people. It may not be a great solution compaired to having a file server, but I don't see any reason why it could not be done and done well.

    Good Luck!

  • @ Christian - many thanks ... very useful info. Much appreciated! Brad

    Brad Lewis