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Lab Assistant
Original Poster
#1 Old 2nd May 2012 at 6:25 PM
Default Anybody have any tips for an organized download folder?
Over the last couple months I have really gotten into CC, and in that time I have downloaded close to 1,000 item. When I started downloading items for specific themes I started putting all relevant items in sub-folders (vampire gowns, fairytale and fantasy, ponds, etc) but I have a lot of downloaded content from before I started using sub-folders that I have no idea what they are because their file names do not really tell me. What would you suggest for keeping downloads organized and under control?

Frankly my dear I'd rather be playing sims :P
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#2 Old 2nd May 2012 at 7:17 PM
It's hard to go back and re-organize but for the future I'd recommend putting things into folders by either website or creator. I download from a lot of forums like MTS and GOS. So what I do is I make one folder for MTS, for example, then I make subfolders inside per creator. If I download multiple things from one creator I'll make subfolders in the creators folder for like 'clothes' 'makeup' 'living room sets' and so on. I get lazy every once in a while but try to stay on top of it. I've actually forbidden myself from downloading anymore right now. I'm up to 13gigs of CC. I feel like I spend more time downloading than playing!

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Field Researcher
#3 Old 2nd May 2012 at 7:38 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bwinney43
It's hard to go back and re-organize but for the future I'd recommend putting things into folders by either website or creator. I download from a lot of forums like MTS and GOS. So what I do is I make one folder for MTS, for example, then I make subfolders inside per creator. If I download multiple things from one creator I'll make subfolders in the creators folder for like 'clothes' 'makeup' 'living room sets' and so on. I get lazy every once in a while but try to stay on top of it. I've actually forbidden myself from downloading anymore right now. I'm up to 13gigs of CC. I feel like I spend more time downloading than playing!


Wow, and I was feeling bad about my 6 gigs! Hahaha! And I am the same way, I go on mass downloading sprees. I have such a soft spot for clutter and decorative items. It gets boring to have everyone with the same furnishings.

Personally, I make folders for various categories, and then within those categories, I make subfolders for either even more specific categories if it applies, and then by creator or website, depending. So I have like, Clothes -> Child -> Everyday -> fakepeeps, or Furnishings -> Phaenoh or, Mods -> Moreawesomethanyou or whathaveyou.
Inventor
#4 Old 2nd May 2012 at 7:57 PM
I am currently alternating between two games , the larger one has 37,136 files and 3298 folders. The other game is about half that size. I did the same thing you did ( just pile stuff in the dl folder) initially as I imagine most of us did. I ended up trashing the loose stuff (pre sub-folders) and making a clean start.There is no right way or wrong way , it is what works for you and keeps you , and your game , happy.I was involved in a similar discussion elsewhere recently and depending upon your EP's and OS , there may be limits as to the depth of your sub-foldering. Some simmers could only go 2-3 subfolders deep before the items would fail to show in game. I'm playing on M and G (off Fun with Pets) and have all EP"s. I'm using Windows 7. I can go (at least) five sub-folders deep before the package file and have things show up/ work in game. I would first test that for your game/OS configuration to establish what works for you.

There are two subfolders , despite my saying no right way or wrong way , that I feel are essential. One of these is for defaults( items that replace EA items) , if you have default skintones , eyes, etc I would definitely keep these clearly labeled and easy to find. The second essential sub- folder should be called Testing or New Stuff or something that lets you know these items haven't yet proven themselves to work/look good/ show up/ not cause conflicts in game. This way when you have a game problem ( and we almost all do occasionally) you can easily find the most likely culprit , which is generally something recently added.

In my Downloads folder I have various sub-folders , one of these is just labeled Buy Mode. There are twenty three sub-folders within Buy Mode, one of these is Bedroom. Inside of the Bedroom folder are various sub-folders , one of these is 4ESF (4eversimfantasy , a place with some nice furnishings). Inside of the 4ESF folder are folders labeled bedroom set 8, bedroom set 13 etc. Inside of those are the package files themselves. I initially trashed all the pics that came with items( I was on a different computer and space was of the essence) , now I keep the pics as well.I have similar set ups for the other main sub-folders(those that are right inside the Downloads folder). I have main folders for Build Mode , Makeup, Eyes, Female Hair, Male Hair, Accessories, Posing Hacks, Food , Careers, Majors, Vehicles, OMSP's , Bodyshapes, Hacks etc. This makes finding/organizing things (for me) easy. If I'm looking for a mod by Squinge , I go to Hacks, then Squinge , then Business related , then Promote anyone to manager and there it is.

Many people prefer different methods. While I would go to Bedrooms or Living Rooms, or Kitchens etc to find various sets by 4ESF , other simmers would keep all of there 4ESF sets/downloads together, sorting by creator , rather than function. There is no right or wrong way , if it works for you , it's all good. I can find a file out of 30,000+ in less than a minute with my set up , so it works for me. Finding that item in the catalog , can be a different matter with that much CC , and for that I highly recommend the Collection Creator from DJS Sims http://forum.jfade.com/viewtopic.php?f=11&t=58 , this is an awesome utility ( for buy mode) that will greatly reduce your searching through the catalog for something like decorative liquor bottles , or a deco chimpanzee or a deco water heater , etc.

Another thing I do , because these type of Dl's usually generate the non-descript package file names (like 43278g54rf2.package) , is create folders called Stuff from sims and Stuff from lots. If I install a sim , for example , I send everything to my Downloads folder itself( I don't have any loose items in there) and then grab all the loose stuff I just installed and put it in a sub-folder called Fairuza Balk , for example, and that goes into the Stuff from sims folder.Same for installing a lot, send to DL folder grab loose stuff, put it in a sub-folder called Echo's carnival, for example , and then into the Stuff from lots folders. I feel those two folders (Stuff from...) are also quite essential , simmers frequently have a problem after installing new lots/sims and this makes it easy to find and delete any problems from such. as you are installing sims/lots take a good look at what Clean Installer lists , look for any hacks that come with lots, and look for anything that says mailbox, period , and when installing sims look for the word default. Default can simply mean this dress(and mesh) are standard female adult sim size , but there are LOTS of default replacement things that can come with sims and they are (unfortunately) frequently labeled default or not labeled at all , and do in fact become default replacements.

Good luck!
Instructor
#5 Old 2nd May 2012 at 9:04 PM Last edited by Liv Lukas : 2nd May 2012 at 10:04 PM. Reason: edited to clarify photos
Well, I am uploading a big file for Mootilda, so I may as well espouse on my DL folder while I wait.

I've worked this system out over a number of years, and it works for me for easy downloading and maintenance. The first tip is to use subcategories NOT subfolders. See:





So instead of having subfolders like this: CAS/Clothing/Female/Adult/Athletic I instead put those as subcategories in the top folder NAME: "CAS - Clothing - Female - Adult - Athletic"

This way the game does not have to chunk through are those subfolders every time it loads. Saves loading time (or so I've read).

I put the A-, I-, Q- before the folder names so that when I use the windows explorer feature group by name the folders are nicely separated. (Windows groups from A-H, I-P, and Q-Z, so this just separates CAS into the A-H section, Build Mode into the I-P section and Buy Mode into the Q-Z section. Works for me. *shrug*)

See:











Second tip is using Windows folder image feature. When I download, I put an image of the item/set into the folder with it with the name folder.jpg (must be a jpg).

Then I set the view to Large Icons. Windows then shows the image as the folder icon.

See:


Q - Buy Mode - Decorative - Paintings and Photos:



A - CAS - Clothing - Female - Adult - Defaults:



Last tip is, if you have a backup drive, to store your downloads folder there and use Syncback (http://www.2brightsparks.com/syncback/index.html) to sync only what the game needs to your Documents\EA Games\The Sims 2\Downloads folder. The game does not need readme's, folder.jpg's, and other extra stuff. It just needs the .package file. So why add to loading time by making it read all that stuff? I setup my sync so that it only copies the .package files to the downloads folder when I play. I do it automatically before every play session, so anything I've downloaded is added, and anything I've deleted is also deleted in my downloads folder.

Works like a charm.

Hope this helps.

Liv Loves Simming: http://livlukas.tumblr.com

Liv Loves LiveSimming: http://www.livestream.com/livlukas

Lab Assistant
Original Poster
#6 Old 2nd May 2012 at 9:21 PM
Thanks for the replys guys very helpful, I've been thinking about redoing my whole download folder so this helps a lot.
Liv Lukas if I understand you correctly, you have subcategories in your download folder and then each item or set within those subcategories has their own folder with a picture(s) to show exactly what it is, right?

Frankly my dear I'd rather be playing sims :P
Née whiterider
retired moderator
#7 Old 2nd May 2012 at 9:34 PM
I'd recommend the organising by type (e.g. object, hack, hair), because that way when something isn't working or is causing problems, you can find it very quickly without needing to know who made it.

And don't forget the DDO: http://www.modthesims.info/d/227925

What I lack in decorum, I make up for with an absence of tact.
Instructor
#8 Old 2nd May 2012 at 10:04 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by kittcat92
Thanks for the replys guys very helpful, I've been thinking about redoing my whole download folder so this helps a lot.
Liv Lukas if I understand you correctly, you have subcategories in your download folder and then each item or set within those subcategories has their own folder with a picture(s) to show exactly what it is, right?


Yep! Right you are!

Liv Loves Simming: http://livlukas.tumblr.com

Liv Loves LiveSimming: http://www.livestream.com/livlukas

Lab Assistant
Original Poster
#9 Old 2nd May 2012 at 10:29 PM Last edited by kittcat92 : 2nd May 2012 at 11:17 PM.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Liv Lukas
Yep! Right you are!

alright I think I may use that technique or something similar (maybe I'm not sure since I want to keep some items separate for different neighborhoods)

Frankly my dear I'd rather be playing sims :P
The Great AntiJen
retired moderator
#10 Old 2nd May 2012 at 11:08 PM
So Liv - how big is your DL folder and how long does the game take to load?

I no longer come over to MTS very often but if you would like to ask me a question then you can find me on tumblr or my own site tflc. TFLC has an archive of all my CC downloads.
I'm here on tumblr and my site, tflc
Needs Coffee
retired moderator
#11 Old 2nd May 2012 at 11:52 PM
Wow Liv, that is impressive. My own system is half organized and half not. I have about 34,000 files so there is no quick method for that amount.

All my very oldest downloads are thrown into one large folder (about ten thousand of those ) Newer downloads are somewhat organized into Body Shop, Build, Hacks, Defaults and so on with sub foldering inside of them. I always put brand new downloads into a dated folder, so May 2. Yes I did download more today. I have a problem.

Every now and then I will click on some of the old downloads to take a look at in SimPE to see if I can figure out what they are and move it. Sometimes I wonder why I downloaded so much horrible make-up and accessories.
If I only had a thousand I would look through and sort roughly with CI and SimPE into general type categories and then sort further from there.
Scholar
#12 Old 3rd May 2012 at 3:29 AM
Interesting system Liv! I've never seen anything like that. I'd also like to know how what is your load time, since I use subfolders right now and want to see how much difference it makes, even with the synchronizing. I'm almost at 3 gb but loads less than 5 mins so it's not too big of a deal, but still curious xD. Also, does naming the jpg "folder" necessary for it to show from the large icon view?

I use numbers for my categorizes, and to put them in order as how it is ingame (like in buy mode, it goes comfort, surfaces, deco, etc). I found it hard to find things when I categorized by just the name for some reason.



(1 use to be skins, but I just found out recently it has been empty since I don't dl skins anyways)


Here is my hair subfolder, where I broke it down into major creators I download tons from, then the rest is dumped in Male or Female. I also use folders with pictures.



And my 0) new stuff folder is where I put all my.. new stuff! I go by dates ish. When I feel a folder has too much, I'll make another folder with the current date. Then after a few days, If move the stuff I know I'll keep into the 2) pending. If I am unsure, I'll leave it in the New Stuff for a little longer for me to decide. When pending gets fullish, I'll compress the Pending folder, then categorize them. That way I'm not compressing my whole DL folder over and over again. (I got this new stuff/pending idea from another MTS user, I don't remember who, but thank you for this awesome idea!!)

And yes, theres still stuff from december (12_29) that I am still debating if I should keep lol

As for the OP, when I discovered I had many "unnamed" CC (with just letters & words), I pretty much started fresh. I only saved makeup I've always used that may be hard to find, and put them in a folder called Original Stuff or something.
Instructor
#13 Old 3rd May 2012 at 6:17 AM
I am in the middle of a cleanout, thanks to a great tip by sushigal007, so I cannot give exact numbers. My "main" downloads folder (where all photos, files are kept) is 10.5 gigs. The \EA Games\The Sims 2\Downloads is 7 gigs (last I checked, but I've cleaned a lot of recolors out recently). The game takes 12 minutes from load to lot. I'd love to get that time under 10 minutes. Lazzybum, it is necessary to name to image folder.jpg to make it be the only thing that shows, as above, like a folder icon.

The way I download is that I size my main download folder window next to my firefox window. I have them already set up like this, so it is easy to just quick resize windows. Then I drag the image from the download page over to the appropriate folder and quick rename it. It is rote to me, now. Then I download the file, slap it in the folder with the .jpg and call it day.

:-)

Liv Loves Simming: http://livlukas.tumblr.com

Liv Loves LiveSimming: http://www.livestream.com/livlukas

Instructor
#14 Old 3rd May 2012 at 7:22 AM
I didn't know that loading times only affects startup and the initial lot load. I was being ultra frugal about downloading. With 5.5gb mine only takes a minute or two extra to load from start, to neighbourhood, to lot. After that it loads normally. Kind of a pain when testing something that needs restarting the game many times.

Using cas or the mirror was going really really slow but it sorted itself out and runs smoothly now. I have hundreds of hair and many are high poly count (whatever that is) and they load fine.
Scholar
#15 Old 3rd May 2012 at 11:32 AM
Liv, I'd be interested in this stuff about subfoldering slowing down loading times. Actually, if anything can slow it down, I'd like to know that.
I've read in your other posts that non-package files in the Downloads folder can also slow down the loading times.

I don't like this. My mind works best with subfoldering+categorizing+eventual subfolder by creator named within the categorized system. It's quicker for my own search purposes and it's all neatly organized. But if that makes my game load slower it is obviously time to redo my Downloads folder. Again...
Lab Assistant
#16 Old 3rd May 2012 at 12:31 PM
nice examples above,
I'm still working on mine, and my computer needs this re-organizing, she is getting a bit slow

I started the use of sub-folders in downloads when I got me the woohoo-shop from xsims and all the kinky clothes they have
at the advise given when I downloaded the sim-prison stuff
and of course I did download some numenor/dreamteam stuff wich is using subfolders by the makers choice
and at the moment I just use the name of the maker for the stuff mst-........... if it came from here

some items from before that time I can still move without any trouble but not all
so most of my older - pre organize downloads I will have to deal with when I eventually move to a new computer
by then the game has to be re-installed again any ways so why should I fuck up my current lots now and try to repair every item that stops working?
(do not answer that)

remove me from your history, I'm not interrested in this site anymore
Instructor
#17 Old 3rd May 2012 at 9:18 PM Last edited by Liv Lukas : 3rd May 2012 at 10:10 PM.
Okay, before I say anything, I will stress YMMV!

I have found some threads were folks talk about this concept of subfolders slowing down the game.

http://sims-101.livejournal.com/32244.html

http://sims-101.livejournal.com/28594.html

http://www.simbology.com/smf/index.php?topic=7972

But to be honest, it is all really just hearsay - there is no hard evidence that I've found. So I suggest a test if you want to be sure:

Get syncback (link in post above) - load the game with your normal downloads folder. Time it. Then move your DLs somewhere safe - we'll call this your "main" DLs folder. Use syncback to ***COPY*** (I would backup my DLs folder as I have screwed up with syncback once or twice in the past and was sooo glad I had a backup!) only the package files from your main DLs folder to your now empty Documents\EA Games\The Sims 2\Downloads folder. Start the game. See if it's quicker.

For me, it was. From 20 minutes to 12.

Liv Loves Simming: http://livlukas.tumblr.com

Liv Loves LiveSimming: http://www.livestream.com/livlukas

Scholar
#18 Old 4th May 2012 at 7:57 AM
Thanks, Liv Will look into this and see if anything makes sense. Just one thing - the Simbology link leads me to a login page. Could you maybe give the thread's name so that we can search? Or maybe make another link?

I've just been on a download spree (don't know what came over me O_o) and stil have to load the game after the usual checkup of the downloaded stuff so I don't know if I've made any lasting damage to my loading times.
But compared to many, with 6 min till main screen and another min to the hood screen, I should probably worry less. And play more
Scholar
#19 Old 4th May 2012 at 8:03 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Liv Lukas
For me, it was. From 20 minutes to 12.


Was this the difference with and without the pictures/texts only? The setup of your folders didn't change?

And that simbology link takes me to a login screen as well.
Instructor
#20 Old 4th May 2012 at 8:45 AM
The setup of my folders did not change, although I am considering using sync to just put .package files in without even the folders since I do all my cleaning and organizing in my main downloads folder.

Sorry about the link, the thread is called: Spring Cleaning by ghostwrytr Here is the important bit:

Quote:
I use DDO (Delphy's Download Organizer) to scan for orphans. Due to intermittant problems with an older version of DDO deleting too many files, I do the file moving by hand from folder windows instead of using DDO's built in Move and Delete functions. (I tend to mistrust newer versions of utilities and assume they'll screw up the same way.)

Do use subfolders. Don't nest too deep.

It goes by folder name first, so renaming the folder zWhatever will make the hacks inside it load last.

Liv Loves Simming: http://livlukas.tumblr.com

Liv Loves LiveSimming: http://www.livestream.com/livlukas

Scholar
#21 Old 4th May 2012 at 9:37 AM
shedding 8 minutes by just excluding pictures is awesome. I don't think I'll sync yet till my loading time really bugs me, but I'll start deleting excess pictures when I can. I tried the naming the pictures to 'folder', neat trick! Thanks for all these info!
Instructor
#22 Old 4th May 2012 at 12:23 PM Last edited by TychoH : 4th May 2012 at 12:34 PM.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Liv Lukas
This way the game does not have to chunk through are those subfolders every time it loads. Saves loading time (or so I've read).


I can tell you it is right. I ordered my folders in the way you did (although I keep a couple of subfolders) and all the cc loads faster.
Thank you.
Mad Poster
#23 Old 4th May 2012 at 5:28 PM
I categorise my CC in the same way it is categorised in the ingame catalogues. So I've got separate folders for mods, build content, buy content and CAS content. Then within those I have subfolders, i.e. male clothing, female clothing, hairs, make-up, etc.

Whenever I download a new piece of content I always rename the file so it's easily identifiable, and put the creator's name and site I downloaded it at the end. That way if I want to have a clearout I can delete stuff straight from the Downloads folder instead of doing it ingame (which takes ages!).
Instructor
#24 Old 5th May 2012 at 1:41 AM Last edited by Liv Lukas : 5th May 2012 at 1:58 AM.
Quote:
Originally Posted by lazzybum
shedding 8 minutes by just excluding pictures is awesome. I don't think I'll sync yet till my loading time really bugs me, but I'll start deleting excess pictures when I can. I tried the naming the pictures to 'folder', neat trick! Thanks for all these info!


To clarify, I did not just shed photos. I also had other extraneous stuff in there, like readme's and other text/.doc files, and a LOT of html links to the original source. I also had a LOT of sims2pack files from houses downloaded.

So, that is why I stress that YMMV. But for me, it was totally worth it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by TychoH
I can tell you it is right. I ordered my folders in the way you did (although I keep a couple of subfolders) and all the cc loads faster.
Thank you.


Yeah! Glad it helped. I love helping the Simming community. I can't mesh, recolor, or build worth crap, but I can hopefully inspire and share knowledge I've learned from years of hard simmin'.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Simsica
Liv, I'd be interested in this stuff about subfoldering slowing down loading times. Actually, if anything can slow it down, I'd like to know that.
I've read in your other posts that non-package files in the Downloads folder can also slow down the loading times.

I don't like this. My mind works best with subfoldering+categorizing+eventual subfolder by creator named within the categorized system. It's quicker for my own search purposes and it's all neatly organized. But if that makes my game load slower it is obviously time to redo my Downloads folder. Again...


The neat thing about keeping a backup, or "main" downloads folder is that you can organize ANYWAY you want. Then just copy the .package files to the Documents\EA Games\The Sims 2\Downloads folder. The more I think on it, the more freedom it gives to never have to "redo" your downloads folder again.

Liv Loves Simming: http://livlukas.tumblr.com

Liv Loves LiveSimming: http://www.livestream.com/livlukas

Scholar
#25 Old 5th May 2012 at 2:42 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Liv Lukas
To clarify, I did not just shed photos. I also had other extraneous stuff in there, like readme's and other text/.doc files, and a LOT of html links to the original source. I also had a LOT of sims2pack files from houses downloaded.
So, that is why I stress that YMMV. But for me, it was totally worth it.


Ah ok, that's a bunch of stuff that I don't carry lol. Thanks for clarifying. Also, what does YMMV stand for? (kinda embarrassed to ask)
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