Monday, March 28, 2011

Syncing multiple computers with different Operating Systems

I have been using a Microsoft product for the last few years to synchronize files between my desktop and laptop. This was a very good service that Microsoft offered as a free trial. I was very happy until they emailed me that it is being discontinued. Since I was forced to look at other options, I did a search for other types of syncing services.

My overall preference is to have all files available on any device I choose to use. I use desktop and laptop  running Windows XP, a laptop that running Ubuntu, and an Android phone on a daily basis.

For browsing on the PC's I prefer to use Firefox. Up until the release of version 4 last week, I have synced the different machines using Xmarks. With the released of the new version 4 I have set up syncing within Firefox on the Windows machines, but I am still using Xmarks to sync the Ubuntu machine. By syncing all the  devices I can open Firefox on any machine and have the same user interface.

For file syncronizing, I found a great web based product called Dropbox. It runs under the Windows OS, the Ubuntu OS and even the Android OS. Any file that I put into the folder on my desktop will be synced with all the other devices. I have even used Dropbox to install an executable file from the Windows XP into my Droid.

There is one other option which I have tested but did not like called Jolicloud. It is an OS that runs on almost any hardware. I liked the concept but when I installed it on a duel booting Dell Laptop, Jolicloud was not able to find the WiFi hardware. I sent multiple emails to the Jolicloud support department but they have not replied back to me. If they can fix the installation and improve their customer service then this looks like a great OS for quick start up and running of cloud based applications.

I would be glad to answer anyone's questions about my experiences.

Links to the products mentioned in the blog: