Microsoft’s SkyDrive, one of my favorite file hosting services next to DropBox, has now an official Mac and Windows desktop client to let users easily manage their SkyDrive files and sync local files with the cloud, from their computers.
SkyDrive for Windows and Mac
SkyDrive for Windows and Mac is definitely the easiest way to access your SkyDrive from your computer. When you install it, a SkyDrive folder is created on your PC. Everything you put in this folder is automatically kept in sync between your computers (PC or Mac) and SkyDrive.com, so you can get to your latest files from virtually anywhere. Whenever you add, change, or delete files in one location, all the other locations will be updated.
To add files, just drag and drop them to your SkyDrive folder and they will automatically be synced with the cloud. You can also easily organize your files and folders, just like any other folder!
Fetching files through SkyDrive.com
Another killer feature of SkyDrive for Windows is the ability to turn your PC into your own private cloud to browse your files and stream videos from anywhere through SkyDrive.com. This feature is great if you forget something on your home PC and need to fetch it or just copy it quickly to SkyDrive.
To use this, just install the desktop client on your computer and enable Make files on this PC available to me on my other device in the Settings. Next, login to SkyDrive.com and click your computer name below the Computers tab at the left side of the screen. You will then need to input an access code to access your remote PC. Once done, you can now view and access your PC (if SkyDrive desktop is running) from SkyDrive web interface.
The only thing missing in this app is the ability to choose which folders to sync with the computer, unlike DropBox which offers selective syncing. Another disappointment is that this app doesn’t work on Windows XP.
Lastly, for those who have previously signed up with SkyDrive, you can still enjoy your 25GB free storage but for the new users, they will only get free 7GB upon signup. That’s still more generous than the free 2GB of DropBox and free 5GB of Google Drive.