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176 posts

Master Geek


Topic # 97637 18-Feb-2012 08:50 Send private message

Hi

Would appreciate some advice please on this.

I currently have a Win7Pro laptop which I use primarily for work (mostly documents/spreadsheets/databases). I'm about to get a desktop with Win7Pro primarily for gaming. However, I'd also like to do some work on the desktop.

To simplify things a bit, this is all happening in one geographical location only - my work doesn't allow internet access on personal computers.

So here's what I'd like to do:
1) Do work on the desktop using the same *.docx / *.xlsx / etc. files as is on the laptop (or copies of)
2) Use Outlook (offline at work location), bring laptop home, and use same *.ost on desktop
3) Backup gaming user files from desktop to laptop

The main options I've come across so far are
1) Sync partnership between laptop and desktop e.g. Win7's built in Sync Center. Obviously will only be able to sync once at home. However apparently won't be able to get Outlook syncing.
2) Share laptop folders with desktop --> access laptop user files from desktop when at home across LAN, and copy files from laptop to desktop and vice versa for backup.

While gaming isn't 'mission critical', work user files and Outlook are things I'd really hate to stuff up, which I'm guessing there's a higher risk with the sync option e.g. modify document on laptop at work, come home, accidentally modify same document on desktop before it's had a chance to sync -> lose changes on laptop because desktop document timestamp is latest.

Thanks in advance for thoughts on
1) Experience with above options
2) Any other options?

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  Reply # 583081 18-Feb-2012 08:55 Send private message

How is your mail accessed? You say *.ost for Outlook, do you have an exchange mailbox? If you have an exchange account (or even imap), then set up the same sail account on both copies of Outlook and it will synchronise over the internet. You do not want to be sharing PST files, it WILL get messy and result in you losing your mail/contacts etc.

As for your documents, how many do you have? Less than 2Gb? Use Dropbox, it will do exactly what you want.

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  Reply # 583106 18-Feb-2012 10:05 Send private message

For documents and files you should consider using Windows Live Mesh.

It will synchronise files between multiple PCs. If you have them all in your LAN (behind the same router), the initial sync will be super fast, peer to peer.

You can also select folders to sync to Windows Live Skydrive, up to 5GB - those will be available to access from any browser later. This is in addition to the 25GB Windows Live Skydrive you have for free for storage (but not sync).

As for .OST, those are created if you have an Exchange account (or Gmail with Outlook Sync, or Windows Live Hotmail with Activesync), so they always sync to the cloud anyway.

Do not EVER sync .PST files - Windows Live Mesh will automatically ignore those. Also do not ever store .PST files in a network folder. PST are not the same as OST.
 






176 posts

Master Geek


  Reply # 583112 18-Feb-2012 10:20 Send private message

Thanks guys very helpful especially re: Dropbox and Windows Live Mesh. I use Dropbox a bit but with 5-10GB I'd have to shell some dough out (not a bad thing considering it's pretty good). With Windows Live Mesh, is there a risk of the problem I mentioned previously - working on a document offline on laptop, come home, work on same document on desktop BEFORE it's had a chance to sync, and for laptop version to get overwritten but 'newer' desktop version?

About Outlook: my mistake, I've got *.pst not *.ost. I don't have a formal exchange account but do sync with gmail. The relationship between my *.pst and gmail account is messy in terms of emails - it's only POP/SMTP and the filing system and which emails are kept etc. are different for historical reasons. However this is fixable but for some slackness on my part. Probably the main reason for wanting to somehow sync the *.pst is that I prefer Outlook's tasks and notes interface to gmail's. Anyway I'll give up on that sync *.pst pipe dream now.


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  Reply # 583113 18-Feb-2012 10:21 Send private message

Windows Live Mesh is pretty fast, and it will not override documents, creating a copy if there is a conflict. And seriously, you would notice if you are working on an old document...







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Master Geek


  Reply # 583115 18-Feb-2012 10:26 Send private message

Thanks Mauricio agreed - I should notice! Just afraid I open up desktop version, type in one keystroke, accidentally save it etc. Will give Windows Live Mesh a go and build a bit of 'don't touch the computers syncing time' into my SOP for coming home!

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  Reply # 583116 18-Feb-2012 10:27 Send private message

You will see in the Windows Live Mesh windows the sync progress. Over ethernet it's very fast. Overy WiFi it will take a bit longer.






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Master Geek


  Reply # 593433 11-Mar-2012 09:38 Send private message

Hi thanks got it all going, and going well. Very minor hitch with one file refusing to sync, but no biggie.

Just another thought about the PST file that's just occurred to me: seems obvious, and maybe obviously stupid, but what about opening the PST (that lives physically on the laptop) on the desktop?

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  Reply # 593451 11-Mar-2012 10:19 Send private message

You should never open a PST file over a network, only on a local drive.




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