Archive for File storage
Have you ever tried to listen to an online training program you purchased when traveling but found you couldn’t play the downloaded MP3s without internet access? Try this solution with Dropbox – if you don’t have it, you can sign up here. Read More→
Have you ever lost a computer document?
Everyone who has created computer files and documents has experienced frustration when they lose an important document.
Let’s see how Dropbox can help eliminate this problem.
First and foremost, you can download Dropbox for free on any Windows, Mac, Linux or Mobile operating systems. No matter how great a computer system you have, it’s necessary to back up your files.
The main advantage of online backup is your files are hosted at a remote location entirely separate from your physical location. Most people who back up data transfer it to an external hard drive. But, what if that hard drive fails or you experience a hurricane, tornado, flood or a fire? If your equipment is destroyed, so is your data. You can also use Dropbox to backup information located on multiple computers with a single service. That’s so much more convenient than plugging an external hard drive into your desktop, transferring, unplugging it, plugging it into your laptop, transferring again, etc.
Security is also an issue that can impact Dropbox (and any other online storage service). Storing your information online is handy and provides an off-site backup you can access in case of a major catastrophe. Your online data will be accessed with your username and password. To improve your security, choose a password that would be difficult to guess and limit access to Dropbox to secure connections.
Dropbox lets you:
* Store your documents, videos and photos
* Share your documents with others
* Protect your precious photos and important documents
With Dropbox you can access your files from anywhere at any time and never have to worry your files may be damaged or lost.
Sharing your documents with others is simple. Just send them an invitation to folders in your Dropbox and they can view those files on any computer just as if the file is actually saved on that computer. It’s a great option when you want to share files or photos with clients, co-workers or relatives.
If your computer or external hard drive should die (heaven forbid), your files on Dropbox can be restored quickly. You can reverse mistakes and it allows you to remove files from the trash that you may have moved there and didn’t intend to.
Dropbox is fast and easy to set up. Storage for up to 2GB is totally free but you do have the option to purchase a storage package that will allow 100GB of storage for $9.99 per month or $99.00 per year (you can get even more storage if needed).
Another great benefit with Dropbox is it works with smart phones, iPads, and other devices that connect to the internet. Accessing your saved files can be done from anywhere in the world.
The convenience, ease of use, and peace of mind knowing your files are safe is a big reason more people are turning to Dropbox for help with file storage.
Dropbox offers File Sharing, File Sync, Online Backup, Mobile Device and Web Access. This allows you to have one dropbox which lets you sync your files online and across your mobile devices and computers. Just think, you won’t ever have to email yourself a file again! If you sign up for a Dropbox account you are guaranteed 2GB of free storage for life. Farther down in this post I have outlined a tutorial for how you can set up Dropbox for yourself, but first here is a list of some ways to use Dropbox:
- Share Photo Galleries. Instead of taking a long time to upload files to a remote service, you can simply drag files from your computer or favorite photo management application (iPhoto, Picasa, PhotoShop Elements, etc.) and drop them in a folder under Dropbox’s Photo folder. Dropbox automatically creates a gallery for people to see. Just right click on a folder of images and copy the public gallery link; then email the link to friends/family/anyone you wish to share them with.
- Password Synchronization. If you use a tool like 1Password or Roboform, you know how nice it is to have all your passwords in one spot. If you’re working on someone else’s computer or your work computer, suddenly you have to remember all your passwords. I don’t know about you, but my memory isn’t as good as it used to be and I depend heavily on Roboform. Now you can use Dropbox to sync the application (1Password or Roboform) on multiple computers.
- Keep your Firefox Profile Synced. Dropbox is an easy solution to keep your Firefox Items (bookmarks, extensions, etc.) synced among multiple computers. Set up the browser the way you prefer it on one computer and enjoy that configuration on all your machines.
- My Documents. Simply change your actual “My Documents” folder to your Dropbox folder. In Windows Vista or 7 this is extremely easy to setup. Right click on your “My Documents” folder then select the “Location” tab, click “Move…”, then select your Dropbox folder. When you hit OK, it will ask if you want to move all your folders and files. Click Yes.
- Shopping Lists. Create a plain text (.txt) file, then add it to your Dropbox. Every computer and cell phone can open a .txt file.
- Contacts and Calendars. Keeping contacts and calendars in sync among multiple computers is a good idea. If you still use a desktop email client such as Outlook, use a Dropbox location to keep in sync.
TUTORIAL: For purposes of this tutorial, we will use a free account.
Step 1: Download and install the software
Navigate to Dropbox, download the software then install it. Start by clicking on the “Download Dropbox” button.
Step 2: Create your account
If you don’t already have an account, leave the selection on the next screen which appears after the software is installed set to “I don’t have a Dropbox account” and then simply click on “Next.” If you do have an account, you would login to your account, of course.
Complete the signup form. If you would like to change the computer name, you can change it to something else. Be sure to use a secure password!
Now it’s time to choose the size of your Dropbox. Choose one then click “Next”.
After choosing your plan, you will need to choose a Dropbox type. “Typical” is what is recommended but you can choose the Advanced option in this tutorial in case you want to change the location of your Dropbox and/or which files will be synced.
The Advanced setup allows you to choose a different Dropbox location.
The next Advanced option is whether you want Dropbox to sync ALL the files in your Dropbox folder or just certain ones. Typically you’d choose to sync all but the option is there if you need it.
Now, you will be taken on a short tour. It’s a quick tour of Dropbox so go ahead and click on “Next” until you’re done.
Step 3: Add files to your Dropbox.
After Dropbox finishes installing, your Dropbox folder will open.
To add files, highlight them and drag them to the Dropbox folder just as you would any folder on your computer. (Hold down CTRL if you want to copy rather than move.)
The files are now in your Dropbox so they will be copied to the Dropbox website and they will be available via the web and your smartphone.
To access your files on the web:
Go to http://www.dropbox.com and click on the “Log in” button at the top right of the screen. The email and password will appear once you click on “Log in”.
After you log in, you will see the files that you dropped into your Dropbox on the web.
If there is a limitation on the iPad, it’s the ability to store and retrieve files. Fortunately, there are apps in the App Store to address that problem. (Let’s face it; there are apps in the App Store for just about everything!)
If you’re on the go (and we’ve already decided you are), then you need an easy way to access and store files, documents, and other data, for retrieval from any computing device, whether it be your iPad or your desktop. Here are just a few of the options you have available to you:
- Google Docs. (Web based.) Google Docs is part of the Google suite of office applications. A server-based application, it allows you to store files of up to 1GB in size for free. You can access your files from your mobile devices (including your iPad) as well as any computer with an internet access. You can save them to your device or computer in a variety of file formats, including ODF, HTML, PDF, RTF, Text, and Word. You can share access with other users, work collaboratively, and tag and archive your documents.
- Dropbox. (Free app.) Dropbox is a popular file backup, storage, and sharing service that has free and paid versions, up to storage of 100GB. There’s a free iPad app that allows you to view photos, videos, documents, and presentations from your Dropbox on your iPad, share and send files via email, and export Dropbox files to open in other iPad apps.
- MobileMe. MobileMe is a service offered by Apple that will allow you to sync your desktop, laptop, iPhone, and iPad information (contacts, email, calendar, and files) together. Using the MobileMe iDisk, you can store your files online and access and download them anywhere, as long as you have internet access. You can also access and share files with other MobileMe users. With intuitive Mac interface, MobileMe is easy to use and quick to set up, but may not be the answer if you want to share with other, non-MobileMe users. $99 per year for 20GB of storage and 200GB of monthly data transfer.
- Mozy. The Mozy app for IOS is listed in iTunes for U.S. and Canadian users and works with MozyHome accounts using the Mozy encryption key. Future updates already under development will expand the release globally and to MozyPro customers.
If you’re already using a file sharing/backup service, chances are, there’s a way to use it on your iPad, and that’s a great place to start. Why reinvent the wheel when you already have something that’s working? Just do a quick search at the App Store and you’ll see if there’s a way to incorporate your iPad into your current systems. If not, check out one of the solutions above. See reference to Mozy in above paragraph.