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It's so simple that explaining it is more complicated than doing it. And once you start using it, you'll wonder how you worked in Office without it.
When you install SkyDrive for Windows, it creates a folder named SkyDrive on your computer which is just like any other folder with one big difference-any file you put into it is automatically added to your SkyDrive in the cloud. And any changes you make to a file--whether on SkyDrive or your computer--gets made to that file in both places.
Say you're working on a Word doc and you save it to the SkyDrive folder on your computer. When you go home and work on another computer, you can open the doc on SkyDrive in the cloud, make changes and save it.
The next day when you turn on your work computer, the new version is in your computer's SkyDrive folder. (Goodbye thumb drive.) That's great but maybe you already haul your laptop home so what's the big deal?
There is also a SkyDrive app for Mac OS X Lion, which gives you access to documents - online or offline - right from Finder. You can also get SkyDrive for iPad, iPhone or Windows Phone to view or share docs from anywhere. And thanks to the Office Hub on Windows Phone, you can view, edit, and share documents on SkyDrive when you're anywhere that your laptop isn't.
How many people do you think reviewed this blog post? Probably not as many as you think. But there were several people, and they work in lots of different buildings and places. So instead of sending it in email and having to compare their suggestions in multiple versions, I saved it to my SkyDrive folder and visited SkyDrive.com where I could send a link to everyone's inbox.
All they had to do was click the link to open the doc in Word on their desktop or on a Windows phone, or in a web browser. Then they could make changes and save it back to SkyDrive.
If some people don't have Office, you can still collaborate with them. When they click the link, the doc automatically opens in a web browser (it does that for everyone else, too) and gives them the option of editing it right there. They can make changes to it just as if it was a Word on a computer. Once they're done, they too, save it to SkyDrive.
When you're working with each other on SkyDrive, you can add or change formatting by using all the formatting tools you're used to in Microsoft Office. The changes come along with the doc when you share it or save it.
The same thing can't be said if you're collaborating in Google Docs. In Google Docs you have to leave behind your impressive Excel pie chart unless, that is, you convert your Google Doc into an Office doc after you're done collaborating. What a hassle.
If you install the SkyDrive app on several different computers, you can actually connect to any of them to find files you need-even if those files aren't yet in SkyDrive. For example, if at home you need a file that you left on your work computer, you can connect to that computer, look for the files in its folders, then add those files to the SkyDrive folder on that computer.
Since those files are automatically synced with your SkyDrive, and since your home computer is connected to that SkyDrive account, you can now access them on your home computer.
Because you don't want just anyone nosing around in your computer, SkyDrive requires a couple extra steps to get inside another computer.
The SkyDrive app puts two security hurdles in place when you want to fetch files. First you have to log in to the same SkyDrive account on each computer. After you do that, you'll see a list of computers in your SkyDrive account in the cloud. If you click on the computer's name, SkyDrive asks if you want to send a verification code to your mobile phone or alternate email address. After you type in that code, you can start browsing and adding files to that computer's SkyDrive folder. After you've done that, they'll be automatically added to your SkyDrive account in the cloud.
Wow. Being able to fetch files from computers kind of makes your computers part of the cloud.
(One thing about fetch--you can use a Mac to fetch files on a Windows computer, but you can't use Windows to fetch files on a Mac.)
How can you not want to install the SkyDrive app? It lets you:
In short, the SkyDrive app combines the benefits of cloud computing and Office to bring you a new and improved work life.
without a doubt it is very useful. i use Skydrive from a long time ago and this update give new tools for everybody. Thanks
Thanks for sharing. I found the new app a few days ago by accident and was quite happy. It works so well I likely won't save any more files on my hard drive! I love that I can work on the files from the bus and when I get back online they'll sync seamlessly.
Glad you like it!
This new SkyDrive app is awesome!!