The Computer File

We have several computers in our home office. To keep warranty information, manuals, and software CDs for each machine organized, we use extra-large magazine files. Each file is neatly labeled with the hostname for the machine. This makes it easy to find materials specific to a given computer whenever you need them, right on the bookshelf.

UPDATE: There are some much cheaper ones available at Amazon, as per Jack’s comment.

22 Comments for “The Computer File”

  1. posted by Ryan on

    There should be a standard size for manuals. I hate getting those super small ones, like the manual that comes with a MacBook.

    Very annoying.

  2. posted by Dr. Ragan PsychologyOfClutter.com on

    Right now I’m using a shoe box. Your method is much more effective. Looks better on the shelf too.

  3. posted by Lisa on

    That looks really nice on the shelf and is a wonderful idea. I’m still working on creating a landing pad at my place. Do tell where you found that Eiffel Tower though..would love one of those above my desk,

  4. posted by Dave on

    Keufel & Esser? 20 incher? Want to sell it? Please let me know….

  5. posted by Erik Mallinson on

    Interesting idea, I like that you’ve sorted them by their hostname.

  6. posted by PJ Doland on

    I got the Eiffel Tower model at the National Building Museum in DC. My wife and I got engaged there.

  7. posted by Brendan on

    That is so sexy

  8. posted by Jack on

    Or you could buy them for just over $1 at Amazon. (http://www.amazon.com/exec/obi.....tterer-20/

  9. posted by Jason on

    I’m curious about those books to the right. Can you post a link to a hi-res shot or a Flickr photo?

  10. posted by PJ Doland on

    It’s the Chicago Manual of style, a couple of Moleskines, a couple O’Reilly pocket guides, and Getting Things Done.

  11. posted by bret on

    can’t stand paper manuals anywhere!

    i get the pdf’s whenever possible…

  12. posted by Dennis S on

    I like the slideruler… of course I’m a geek

  13. posted by samurphy on

    From the amazon link

    List Price: $54.72
    Price: $1.19
    You Save: $53.53 (98%)

    That doesn’t make a lot of sense to me.

  14. posted by Tammy on

    This is a terrific idea and I appreciate the direct link to Amazon. I hate clutter and am glad to have found your site via Lifehacker!

  15. posted by TallDave on

    Considering all the comments on the look of your home/office, perhaps you should post a picture which shows a whole room. Then, go to town about how this is what uncluttering looks like in action.
    In fact, this might be a good idea for a flickr tag: “unclutterer”

  16. posted by Michael Hupp on

    Samurphy – I caught that too, seemed odd. Further investigation reveals that the vendor is actually Office Depot, so wondering if its a scale mismatch. Maybe most vendors sell per 100, but Office Depot sells per each or something?

  17. posted by Jason on

    Well, there’s a total shocker, something grossly overpriced at the Container Store. IKEA has some that don’t necessarily look like temporary storage for a decent price: http://www.ikea.com/webapp/wcs.....attype=sub

    I’m seconding the call for standard-size manuals, too. I have mine in a baggie, and that just never worked in any context.

  18. posted by motherduce on

    Who uses paper manuals? I dump mine in a file drawer or toss them immediately. There are better resources online anyways. Most manuals or horribly written and hard to find what you really need.

  19. posted by motherduce on

    Who uses paper manuals? I dump mine in a file drawer or toss them immediately. There are better resources online anyways. Most manuals or horribly written and hard to find what you really need.

  20. posted by Matt on

    I was wondering what the bookends you are using? I’ve been using the banker’s boxes as bookends, but your way is more visually appealing.

  21. posted by Cujo on

    I second motherduce – I almost never save these things at all. In the unlikely event that I ever need them again, they’re almost always available online. I think the only manual I’ve had to go find in the past 5 years was the one for my wireless router, and it was easily available online.

  22. posted by Allen on

    I am computer guy.Been there done that. but you still can’t find the stuff when you need them (which is rarely).

    My Solution you ask? I put all that junk in a plastic bag and dock tape it to the inside of the computer case at the bottom where it is least likely to block air flow.

    Not an option for laptops and small cases, but again, majority of PCs are full desktop with a lot of dead space inside.

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