iCloud Drive, Files and Folders9 min read

iCloud drive gives you a folder structure like your computer has, and if you use iCloud on all your devices, including your computer, you will have access to your files and folders anytime, anywhere, even if you are on the road and away from home.

File and Folder Management

Make sure iCloud Drive is turned on

Go to Settings

Look for your name at the top of the settings

  • If you don’t see your name, you are not signed in
  • You will need your Apple ID and Password to sign in

Make sure there is a green on button next to iCloud Drive?

Let’s Tour the App

From the top and then down the left and then to the right

  • 3 horizontal dots (Menu) at the top or bottom of your device, include: Scan, Connect to Server and Edit.
  • Select is for selecting files or folders you want to do something with.
  • The Search option will enable you to search for filenames or folders.

Down the left we have

  • Locations
  • Favourites
  • Tags

First, let’s look at the 3 dotted menu

  • You will find this at the top or bottom of your iCloud Drive App.
  • As the name states, you can scan any document with your device.
  • You need to be in the folder you want the doc scanned into before you scan.

You will need good light in the room to do this properly. Each file is big (maybe 10megabytes), so you don’t want to do too many. I would not start scanning in a massive amount of photographs. I picked up for free, however I think they now charge for it, but it’s worth the money.

Please note

When you confirm your device is on one of the lists above, please proceed to step 2 below.

Scanner Pro

Here is the link, https://bit.ly/getscannerpro and if you tap this from one of your Apple devices it will take you staight to the Apple App Store.

Still in the 3 dotted menu, top or bottom of the app

To edit the locations and items in the left sidebar you tap, the 3 dotted menu at the top of bottom of the app and tap Edit, which enables you to:

  • Remove and move locations in the left sidebar, such as favourites, and tags.
  • Tapping the minus button will remove the locations.

When you do that, you will see the green on and off options and the minus buttons next to the Favourites and tags below the Favourites


Some folders are automatically installed when you install an app, like the ones above for Scanner By Readdle, Shortcuts, Sketch, Pixelmator etc.

Tabs across the bottom: Recent & Browse

How to work with folders?

  • Long pressing on a folder; pops up another menu.
  • Tap any other folders or white space to turn the menu back off again.
  • NOTE: Some menu items are only on IOS 13.

I’ll explain some folder commands

Copy: copying a folder is a good way to copy a folder and place it inside another folder.

  1. Long Press on the folder you want to copy.
  2. Choose copy, then go to the folder or the location you want to copy it too.
  3. Tap to go inside the location folder.
  4. Long press on any white space area until the menu below appears.
  1. Tap move here if you want to move the folder from its original location to this location or tap past, which leaves the original folder where was and makes a copy and puts it in this location.


As the name suggests, this will just duplicate the folder or file and its contents in the same location you are in, but give it a different name. You can then long press and tap rename to rename the folder.


This is good if you use for folders the same folders or locations all the time

Long Press on a folder and tap Favourite and it will appear on the left.

To remove a Favourite

  • Slide the folder to the left slowly until remove appears
  • Tap remove
  • Slide back to the right if you change your mind and want to keep it as a favourite.

The best way to move a folder or file

  • Long press and tap copy on any file or folder
  • Go to the location/folder you want to move it to
  • Make sure you tap the destination folder to get inside
  • Long press until this menu pops up and choose Move Here

Compress a folder

Notice: Good if you are sending several files to someone, as it makes it easy to attach to an email, etc.

  • It zips them up into one zip folder
  • Long press a folder and choose compress, but I would make a duplicate first

Compressed folders look like this. Look for Zip folders (Compressed folders)

If you get lost in the folder system, follow the bread crumb menu, top left

At the top, tap the blue arrow and keep tapping it to go back to the parent folder.

Create a Folder

  • Long press in the white space between the rows of folders
  • A menu will pop up as shown below.
  • Tap New Folder
  • You will then see your new folder and be able to name it.

That’s it for iCloud Drive and files and folders. If you have any issues or things that have tripped you up, let me know in the comments at the bottom of this page.

You can also rate this lesson in the ratings box below and provide some feedback.

Ian Mackenzie

About the Author

Using technology has enabled Ian to work from home since 2001 as a web designer and e-commerce owner. It even helped him make the great escape from Sydney to Nambucca Heads in 2005.

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