Being a long time, loyal fan of the popular file sharing service FolderShare.com, I wasn’t exactly surprised by the announcement that Microsoft will be dumping the legacy FolderShare name (FolderShare was a Microsoft acquisition 12-18 months ago) and rebranding the services – Windows Live Sync. Granted, I “thought” the strategy would be to work the functionality into their Mesh.com service. However, I guess they’ve decided to keep things separate for now (and somewhat confusing) for Windows Live Sync, SkyDrive, and Mesh.com.
I think they need to get their “LIVE” guys all the in the same room and come up with a real strategy before they have as many online services as they do versions of Vista!
In any case, Windows Live Sync (or FolderShare 2.0 as they refer to it) will continue to work the same as it does today. However, they will be fixing all the “pesky” issues users have been complaining about over the past few years
In December, we plan to announce a product called Windows Live Sync. You can think of it as FolderShare 2.0. It’s going to look familiar and offer the same great features, plus:
- More folders and files—sync up to 20 folders with 20,000 files each.
- Integration with Windows Live ID—no more extra sign-in stuff to remember.
- Integration with the Recycle Bin—no more separate Trash folder to fiddle with.
- Unicode support—sync files in other languages.
Overall, good news for me and those in my network of friends/family who use it.
What does FolderShare/Windows Live Sync Do?
Essentially, the software allows you to sync data/files easily between one or more systems over the internet. Just install the software, select the folder(s) you wish to share (Apple or Windows) then use the Web Interface to send out invites to your data.
The Interface allows you to give different roles to users, which is nice. You can setup some people with Read Access and others with Contributor or Editor Access. Personally, I use it after a vacation to consolidate all the digital photos from all my friends. I create a FolderShare called “Vacation X,” invite all my friends as contributors and within a few hours, we all have all the photos from the trip. Simple, easy and free and since it works through Firewalls, you don’t need to worry about the service getting blocked.
Another feather the service offers is the ability to access a remote PC’s hard drive. Let’s say you’re at work, and you want to access a file on your home computer. If the Home Computer is running the Live Sync (FolderShare) software, just log in to the Web Interface, and it will give you access to download any files from the Remote computers running the software (that you have access to.)
Another thing I like about the product is it stores NOTHING in the Cloud. All the data shared is kept on your computers and encrypted in transit. Beautiful and secure. Perhaps that’s why I’m still not using Mesh/SkyDrive or some other “Cloud” data service.
Anyone out there a FolderShare.com user? Any other good Sharing services out there people like? Would love to hear from you.