Is there any alternative to Magic Folder for ubuntu? Or can we make a folder which will allow us to easily categorize and move files. When we drag a file to the folder it will look at the file extension and place Document files (like doc, xls, ppt, etc) in the Document folder. It places image files like (JPEG, PNG, TIFF, GIF, etc) into the Pictures folder or move the file to the custom specified location.

5 Answers 5


pysorter is a python library that can do just that. It runs on Ubuntu and supports custom definitions of filetypes.

It's quite simple to install:

sudo pip install pysorter

Then type

pysorter --help

for a detailed help message.
An example filetypes.py file can be found in the GitHub repository.

Disclaimer: I am the author of pysorter.


Using a shell script could accomplish this easily, all you do is move the following script in the folder you want to be organized:

find <path to folder> -name "*.file_extension" -exec mv {} <target directory> \;

and then put that in your startup applications. I have this and a similar script that removes all files with a certain extension, and cleans up my downloads folder.

  • Is this the code of the script and in what extension I have to save the script
    – Namshum
    Commented Oct 2, 2012 at 4:57
  • This is the code, and you just save in a .sh file. Make sure to give it permissions by going to properties > permissions > allow file executing as a program.
    – codesmith
    Commented Oct 2, 2012 at 11:00
  • I used the code "</home/namshum/Downloads> -name ".exe" -exec mv {} </media/MP3/Clearing/> \;"* but it did not move the file but instead create two file "-name" & ";"
    – Namshum
    Commented Oct 2, 2012 at 11:42
  • sorry for not being clear, but you don't use the '<' or the '>'. I just use them when I'm saying type what's meant, not what's actually said.
    – codesmith
    Commented Oct 2, 2012 at 19:22
  • A shell script running on startup, using inotify to monitor for changes on folder should do the job Commented Feb 11, 2021 at 20:59

I suggest truecrypt

following this link :

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:michael-astrapi/ppa
sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get install truecrypt
  • I want something that can be easily categorize and move files & folder.
    – Namshum
    Commented Oct 1, 2012 at 16:28

Assuming you want a Private folder that is encrypted when you are not logged in, and decrypted when you are logged in, try the command ecryptfs-setup-private in a terminal. You may need to install ecryptfs-utils first, if it is not already installed.

This will create a new folder called "Private" in your home directory as /home/USERNAME/Private. Anything you put inside (files, folders) will be transparently encrypted. You can use the default file viewer, Nautilus to copy and move files to and from Private folder.

To test you will need at least two user accounts, say user1 and user2.

First, create the Private folder while logged in as user1.

Second, copy some files and folders inside the Private folder. While you are still logged in as user1 you can open, read and edit these folders and files.

Third, logout from the user1 account and login as user2. Try to navigate to the User1's Private folder and verify that the files and folders inside are secure.

When you log back in as user1 the encrypted folder "Private" will be automatically decrypted for you so that you can read and edit flies and folders inside "Private" again.

See the documentation and How to get a encrypted folder with passphrase for additional details.

  • I want something that can be easily categorize and move files & folder.
    – Namshum
    Commented Oct 1, 2012 at 16:28
  • I am not sure I understand what you mean by easily categorized. I will edit my answer on what the ecryptfs-setup-private does.
    – user68186
    Commented Oct 1, 2012 at 16:34

I am not aware of any application in Ubuntu that will do that for you. This can probably be implemented easily using Nautilus extension scripts. For example, right-click on a selected number of files and a context menu "Categorize" could invoke a shell script that parses filenames and filetypes, and moves them to pre-determined user directories.

As far as I know, someone needs to write this.

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