Here is a way to keep the most recent version of your book synced across multiple computers for free. This not only works for Word docs but MP3s, spreadsheets and any other file on your computer.
The Old Way
Back in the olden days, when you wanted to move a .doc from one computer to another you needed to put it on a flash drive and then copy it to your other computer. You could also email it to yourself. Either way you waste time and create multiple versions that can get confusing after a while. Yuck.
The New Easier Way
What if I told you there was a way to keep the files on your netbook and desktop synced wirelessly? What if that would also backup both computers? What if I told you this tool was free? Well guess what, there is such a way and it is called Dropbox.
How DropBox Works
This video explains how Dropbox works in plain English.
How To Get Dropbox
- Go to Dropbox.com
- Fill out account info and click “create account.” The free Dropbox account gives you 2 GB which is more than enough space for over a hundred Word documents. Just don’t expect your music library to fit in the free account.
- Download & Install Dropbox onto your computer. Dropbox gives you easy instructions on how to do this.
- Download & Install Dropbox onto your OTHER computer. This is basically the same thing you did in step 3. Repeat step 4 for each additional computer. You can add the drop box to as many computers as you would like.
- Drag the Word doc of your book into your Dropbox folder. After you do this you should see the doc on both computers. Open it up and make changes and magically those changes will appear on the other computer. Just don’t open the file on both computers at the same time. This will create a rift in the space time continuum.
You can also create folders to share with other Dropbox users. I often will share a Dropbox folder with my clients to exchange files for their websites. This is a lot easier than emailing photos back and forth.
What do you think?
Do you use Dropbox? Are you happy with it? Do you use one of its competitors like SugarSync or Box.net? Which do you like better?
I use both DropBox and Box.net. Both are great. DropBox is by far the easier of the two for synchronization purposes, but it lacks one very important feature that Box.net does have. You can share any file or folder in box.net publicly. However with DropBox, you're limited to one file at a time shared publicly. It's cumbersome if you'd rather make a folder public. So, until DropBox implements this much-asked-for feature, I will keep both (though I've mostly moved over to DropBox). Their desktop app is awesome!
Lastly, note that clicking a link here will earn Author Tech Tips a referral and some free storage space. Just FYI.
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I haven't used the other options, but I've been using dropbox for a couple of years and I LOVE IT. As I am always working between my home computer and work computer snatching bits of free time to scribble on my WIP during the work day, I no longer have to remember to email it to myself or forget to save it in the right place. It's always THERE, exactly where I need it. The sharing of things publicly is not an issue for me as I have nothing to share publicly. At most I have shared folders with specific people like my crit partner or husband or cover artist, which works beautifully. And best of all, they have a permanently free 2 GB size that's perfect.
i also love dropbox. it makes my file management and transfer easier.
Roger S. Swift
Clerical worker supervisor http://www.computertowersonline.com/computer-towers/shop
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