Suggestions or "Model" for setting up computer's folders

Hi all.

As I begin to set up my brand new machine for video compositing and editing I was wondering what "layout" or "model" folks might use for the way directory/folder structures are set up for work-flow?


I have the Win 10 Pro OS and programs (like Hitfilm) on the 1 TB SSD C drive.  I have a 1  TB SSD D drive for the place to put files that are involved in what we can call the "current compositing / editing project".  And I have a 4 TB mechanical F hard drive for archival storage of general video editing stuff that will get moved to the D drive for a given working project.

However, within that D drive in particular, how do you like to set up the folder structure?  Hate to "reinvent the wheel" if there are some good models that I don't know about (yet).

Appreciate any thoughts you might have.




  • My way is as follows, I have folders for type of content (e.g Sound effects, LUTS, Green Screen effects, images, etc) then I have for my media content broke down by year then either by project or month. Then have a nice clear folder name that is relevant to the content, this way if I use some form search it will find the directory from my key words. But that's just my way.

  • Triem23Triem23 Moderator

    My C: is OS, Programs and cache. (SSD) 

    My D: is Programs and proxies (SSD)

    Note I have Programs on two drives. All my "work" software in in a "Studio" folder. Inside "Studio" are folders for "Programs," "Plug-ins" and folders for Hitfilm Cache and Proxies (note Pro and Express each have their own Proxy/Cache folders. Express and Pro don't share cache. They MAY share proxies, but, meh). This is all the Hitfilm, Vegas, Affinity, Blender, Sound Forge, Ignite, Imerge, etc stuff. Anything audio/video/photo/graphics related.

    Programs on C: would be misc stuff. System cleaners, font management, etc. Also OnOne Photo Raw because that has to install on C. 

    Also, many programs (Hitfilm included) have to install things on C: because of Windows. So there's still FXHOME files on C:.

    D: is the "Library." This is my stock elements. Four files on the root directory - Video, Image, Audio, 3D models. Each folder has its subfolders, by source (so "Action VFX" and "Videoblocks" are in Video, among others. "Audioblocks," or "Triune" are in audio, among others). There's a "Triem" subfolder for anything I made. The subfolders have more subfolders for a "collection." So, Action VFX has more subfolders for Explosions, Sparks, etc. Each collection has a "Favorites" subfolder, if I find I keep using a particular element.

    3D Models is the exception. 3D Models just has subfolders for each model (note folder name includes model's creator, like "Y-wing by Al Dinnet" or "X-Wing by Frank Salinas - Spydurhank." That said, certain things have "category" subfolders. So the 50 Star Wars models have a Star Wars folder with each model in another subfolder. This is a bit loose. Note when I set up a model in Hitfilm I save a Comp Shot of my rig to the same folder as the original model. That's a stupid little "Power hint," but a great one.

    E: is my Projects drive. 

    On E: is a Folder called "000 Structure" Structure contains an empty series of Folders: Source Video, Source Graphics, Source Audio, Music, Recorded Audio, Prerenders, Final Render, EDL, Script - Notes. This file structure is copied to every new project folder I create. The names are self-evident... 

    Otherwise E: has subfolders for Personal Pictures, Work Projects, Hit-U, and "Experiments" (personal videos).

    In "Work Projects" each project has a subfolder by date: if a wedding, date of ceremony, for anything else, shoot date or delivery date (if delivery date specified in contract). Date format is YYMMDD. This sorts in date order even if sorted by name. This number is also the "invoice number" for billing! (Invoices go in the project/scripts subfolder AND the related Office folders). A descriptive is added. 181027_Conroy-Barr Wedding, or 190412_Fashion Show.

    Hit-U's subfolders include "Templates" (logos and reused elements) then each project is named by its "show" and episode number. ESSENTIAL 015 Cameras 4,or Effects Lab 001 Photon Torpedos.

    Anything Personal? Photo subfolders  are still named by date/location - "181124 Fox Glacier NZ." Video gets sloppy here. "Foundry Tracker Test" or "Ghostbusters Go." Whatever.

    When Library media is added to a project it is copied from the Library drive to the relevant Project subfolder. Yes, this means every episode of Essential Hitfilm has a copy of music files in its file folders. Eventually I'll change computers or move things to external drives for storage. Copying redundant media saves time later if I return to an old project, so I don't have to hunt down and relink everything. 

    I'm sure there's more, but that's enough infodump for now. 

    I do recommend my "date sorting." Came up with it 20 years ago when I had to design a consistent file structure for a small studio and its worked well. Plus, as a small business, "Invoice 190805" looks better than "Invoice 274."

    You don't have to follow mine. Just come up with something consistent, then stick with it. For me, the date/descriptor works well. I know what every project is, years later, as first glance. Date/wedding, date/concert, date/seminar, etc. Date/location... 

  • Useful infor about the HFE/HFP cache settings @Triem23 - I didn't realise that and overwrote my HFE locations with HFP. I'm assuming I won't use HFE any more so I suppose I'm OK.

    I'd also be interested on any recommendations for organising objects within Hitfilm in the Media Panel.

    There aren't many options and I think there are plans for improvements in a future release.  I tried using Folders but it took quite an effort to set it up, and to use, I thought that if I selected a folder the imported some media it would be saved in the selected folder, but it didn't always seem to work that way. Dragging and dropping within the media panel is also difficult when there are lots of items.

    Also Hitfilm often puts things in it's own locations, especially when importing composite shots. Planes also seem to increase dramatically, although that may because I haven't learned to re-use planes.


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