Creating and Managing Files

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Learning Outcomes

It's important that you understand how to navigate through your computer's directory system, and organise your files so that you can find them at a later date. This learning resource will help you to gain familiarity with the process of doing these things within your computer.

File Types

Each file on your computer is identified by its file name & its file-extension. The file-extension identifies the file type. A computer reads the file extension and then knows what type of program was used to create the file. The same type of programme will then be able to read (open)the file. If you're not sure which programme opens the file that you're looking at (e.g. dog.pdf) you could probably find out by searching on the internet for ".pdf".

Another option is to have a look at a file-extension directory like Filex.

Organising Files

  • Watch this short screen movie showing how to create folders and organise files.
  • Minimise all windows that are open so that you can see the desktop. If you are not sure how to do this, you should probably run through the Navigate within the Windows environment learning module.
  • Open My Documents and create a folder within it called Massage or something similar.
  • How do you want to organise your files relating to massage? You could create a folder for each subject that you are studying (e.g. Study Skills | Basic Massage | Fundamentals of Massage | Communication 1 | Anatomy 1 | Bioscience 1), or you could organise your files in another way. Have a think about it & create the folders that you think you might need (you can always change this later if you're worried about getting it perfect).
  • Now have a look around the file structure of your computer.
  • See if you can find out which "drive" ([1], [2]) your My Documents folder is on.
  • Can you see where your computer stores the Program files?
  • Can you see what's currently in the Recycle bin?

Moving Files

  • Watch this short screen movie showing how to move files to new locations within your computer.
  • If you have any files related to massage stored on your computer, then move these files into the appropriate directory
  • Go through your emails and save any files that are sitting there as attachments into the appropriate directory.


Congratulations - you've now learnt how to create folders, and organise files! If this is fairly new to you, you should probably spend some time now playing with these ideas, and exploring the file structure of your computer until you feel a little more comfortable with how it all works.