Pro Tools Session Management Basics 2

Training people on Pro Tools I’ve had the unique opportunity to check out the file management habits – good and bad – of hundreds of Pro Tools users. It’s like getting a glimpse of someone’s house. Some are exceptionally clean and tidy. Others are not.

Of all the desktops I’ve seen there’s one that comes up time and time again that perfectly illustrates File Management neglect. It looks something like this.

Picture of Messy Desktop

If computer displays could have coffee stains there would be one here.

What’s Wrong With This Picture?

Apart from the overall problem that the various session files, folders and documents are scattered about the desktop instead of being kept within their parent session folders, is the problem that the audio files do not have useful names.

Instead of file names like lead_vox_01, bass_01, snare_top_04, you’re left guessing through a pile of audio_01, audio_02 etc.

That’s going to make allot of extra work and wasted time when you need to locate and import, say – the bass audio or lead vocal – from a particular session.

With that in mind, let’s review where and how Pro Tools stores your audio files and how taking three seconds to name your tracks in Pro Tools before you record will automatically create sessions that are suitable for sharing and archiving.

Pro Tools File Structure Video 2/5: 3:53

  • Audio Files
  • Audio Files Folder


  1. Thanks, man. I believe it is very important to have proper session management. It makes the workflow a lot easier. Do you have any recommendation for a brand external hard drive?