Do you worry when you leave home that you may need some files from your home computer? Do you worry when you travel that anything you create on your travel computer may get lost or destroyed before you get back home? Do you worry that the pictures you take with your phone will get lost or destroyed before you are able to transfer them to your computer? Do you worry that the USB drive where you keep your important files will get lost or destroyed, or that you didn’t update it with your latest work?
Don’t Worry! Use Dropbox!
Dropbox.com is a cloud storage service. There are many of them like Apple’s iCloud, Microsoft’s OneDrive, and Google’s Drive. We use them all, but we like Dropbox the best for 2 reasons:
- It ISN’T Apple, Microsoft, or Google! So it’s not tied in any way with one of those accounts, and it works well with ALL.
- It does the best job of Synchronizing among all your computers and mobile devices.
Synchronizing means that Dropbox keeps a copy of your files on your computer – in the Dropbox folder – AND in the Cloud – in your Dropbox.com account – and it takes care of ensuring that when either one is updated, so is the other. All you have to do is save your file in the Dropbox folder on your computer, and Dropbox will create, or update, the corresponding file in your Dropbox.com account. It will also update that same file on anyone else’s computer with whom you have shared a folder, and make it accessible to any device that has the Dropbox App installed.
With Dropbox, you can:
- Start working on a file at home, continue working on the same file on the road
- Share a folder for a group of people to collaborate on project files, even when those people are spread all over the world.
- Work on a file locally when you have no Internet connection, and it automatically synchronizes to the web and other shared group members when you do get online.
- Create a group photo album where everyone automatically gets a copy of the pictures on their computer – not just a shared web album.
- Start working on a file on your laptop, continue working on the same file on your iPad or Android smartphone.
- Automatically upload all photos taken with a mobile device to your Dropbox.com account – AND synchronize with whatever computer(s) you have set up.
Using Dropbox has definitively eliminated any worries I have about my computer files. I know that I have access to all of my files and pictures (and they are the current, updated versions!) wherever I am and whatever computing device I happen to have available. I’ve been using Dropbox long enough now that I have actually forgotten what it is like to worry about my computer files. I don’t have a computer backup system any more. If a file is important to me, it’s in my Dropbox folder. In fact, I no longer use My Documents folder – unless it’s an unimportant file. I use my Dropbox folder in lieu of my Documents and I set up as many subfolders as I need to store my stuff.
How much space do you get?
The initial free allotment of space in your Dropbox account is 2 Gigabytes. For $10/mo you can upgrade that to 1Terrabyte. But, there are also many promotions that allow you to earn more free space. You can sign up for dropbox using this link and both you and I will get 500MG extra free space!
Every traveler needs a Dropbox! For more information, see the Dropbox Tour.
Watch our weekly show on Learning Smartphones and Tablets:www.GeeksOnTour.com/weeklyshow