With the onset of Spring comes the desire to dispose of the crud that has cluttered your life during the cold winter months. After you're finished washing the windows, recycling the pounds of cardboard that have taken over your garage, and scrubbing the dog, it's time to turn your attention to your Mac.

In just over seven minutes I offer a few techniques for clearing some obvious forms of cruft from your hard drive as well as configuring your Mac so that it doesn't create such a horrid mess in the first place.

Download Macworld Video #47

  • Format: MPEG-4/H.264
  • Resolution: 320 x 240 (iPhone & iPod compatible)
  • Size: 16.1 MB Length: 7 minutes

Show Notes

In the first portion of the video I discuss techniques for archiving email in Apple's Mail application. Fear not if you use a different email client. While other email applications may not have smart mailboxes as Mail does, they offer some way to filter messages into special mailboxes, which you can then archive. (Entourage, for example, includes Mail Views that can be used for this purpose.) And all of today's email programs support exporting mailboxes a mbox files. More often than not this can be achieved simply by selecting a mailbox and dragging it to the Desktop. If that won't do the trick, check the application's File menu for an Export command.

Later in the video I show an Automator technique for automatically moving files dropped on the Desktop to specific folders. I should note that in my tests Leopard's Automator sometimes needed a subtle kick to do what I wanted—particularly when I attached more than one folder action to the Desktop folder. Logging out and then back in did the trick for me.

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