Manage Your Files The Smart Way Using Dropbox

Dropbox is a great way to sync files among multiple devices, share files, backup data and access files on the Internet.  The utility of the tool grows in proportion to the user’s knowledge and commitment to using it.  It appears as an icon on the system tray, and as a folder in My Documents, integrating seamlessly into Windows and other operating systems. Here is how you can make use of this simple yet powerful tool.


Sharing Files cannot be any Simpler

The Dropbox folder contains a Public file. By right clicking on it and choosing the Copy Public link, a public Web address for that file is created which can be sent to others.  This option should be used only for files for which unrestricted access is appropriate, because they are not password protected. Photos can similarly be linked to the Public Gallery folder.


Invitation only access can be allowed for files to be shared with a selected number of individuals. Right clicking on a file in the My Dropbox folder opens up the Dropbox Web site where the user can enter the email addresses of intended recipients.  These individuals can then access, edit, or add something to the file.  When a recipient actually accesses the file, the sender will receive an email notification. This lets a group leader, for example, be aware of the fact that all the members have checked the file shared with them.

Another option for sharing files is a “get link” tool which creates a URL directly to that file.  The user can keep the file where ever he wants to and only those to whom he provides the URL will have the access to that file.

Take a note that when you drag and drop files into the Dropbox folder, they disappear from their previous location. So, you should not forget to form a symbolic link inside My Dropbox to any file or folder of your interest anywhere on your system for the purpose of automatic synchronization.

The Collaboration

A major reason for sharing files is collaboration.  Dropbox does not have collaborative editing tools.  Anyone who accesses a shared document can edit it, but the one who returns it first will have his edits in the main file.  Other edited versions will be saved as conflicted copy, so they will be available to other members of the group, but any further changes will have to be manually edited.

Sync Multiple Devices in a Click


It is possible to make the My Dropbox folder your My Documents folder, so that you can access all of your documents from any of the devices you use.  Right click the My Documents folder, go to properties, and change the path to the My Dropbox folder.   Similarly, dragging and dropping music files to the My Dropbox folder will allow you to access music from any of your devices, without separately loading them.  Photos can be downloaded to your computer from your smart phone by connecting the phone to the PC and following the prompts, again allowing access from multiple devices.

So, if you are running out of space on your hard disk and you do not want to lose your important files, then get a Dropbox for yourself. Drop your files in it and be assured of its security.

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