musings about technology and software development..

Hard Drive Backup with Live Mesh

I hope everyone out there is backing up their data.  Up until now, I've used the tried-and-true method of copying my files periodically to another drive.  Of course, in the event of data catastrophy, I would lose all my changes since the last xcopy .. which was .. about 9 months ago.  A file backup gestation period, if you will.

In any case, I'm now using Live Mesh.  It's cross-platform and you get 5gb of online storage for free (you can sync unlimited data between machines).  I've synchronized my musics, videos, and documents between all my machines which is pretty fantastic.  In case you want to try it, here's what I would have liked to know beforehand:
  • You cannot synchronize your Desktop folder.
  • Your first 5gb of synchronized files ends up in the cloud. Choose wisely.
  • You have to login with a LiveID, but it doesn't share cookies with the browser.  So, if you will ever want to sync with a friend, create a new LiveID to share.
  • When you add a folder to be sync'd, it will show up on every other machine as a virtual folder.  This can be very confusing when you've named them all "Documents" -- prefix folder names with the computer name.
My next step is to set up a sync with my a friend in another state, in case my home with all my computers burns down.  Overall, it was pretty easy to setup, although I now have a paranoia that one node will decide to delete something, and spontaneously trigger all my files to be deleted on every machine simultaneously.


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