Using Hazel with Obsidian

Hazel is an automated file sorting application created by Noodlesoft for the Mac. You can basically set it to watch specific folders and give it rules to handle files within those folders.

This basically means that you can decide that certain things about any possible file should be organised in a certain way and maybe have different attributes, such as different filename, tags and moved to other folders or subfolders.

How to Use with Obsidian

Obsidian vaults are ultimately just a main folder with subfolders and files (most of which are text files). This means it works perfectly with Hazel. In order to use Hazel with an Obsidian vault all you need to do is add a rule and select the folder to watch, either the main vault folder or a folder within the vault, depending on the context of what you want to achieve.

Since this is a Mac-only app then you obviously need a Mac to do this and run it. There are limited Windows alternatives, and while possible to do similar things it’s far more cumbersome to set up.

An Example using Daily Notes

One Hazel rule I’ve set up so far is to manage my Daily Notes. If you use this plugin then you know that wherever you have it set to create notes it’s just a flat structure with more and more daily notes added. This can then be messy if you like to have things organised top-down with fewer files in any one folder.

So what I have in Hazel is when the month rolls over then all previous month’s notes get moved into a new subfolder with the year and month number. This cleans it up substantially and means that I never have more than 31 daily note files at any one time in that folder at the top level. It all happens automatically as long as I have my Mac running.

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