Last week’s announcement of Google Drive was met with excitement, as it meant Google is finally offering online sync and storage, just like Dropbox, but at a quarter of the price.
However, online forums were soon abuzz as users quickly bumped into the limitations of Google Drive. The biggest complaints are that not all files are synced, only one PC folder can be chosen for sync and that Google Drive limits you to one synced Google account per computer.
There are other ways to sync your computer with Google Drive. The chief alternative is Syncdocs, a new version of which of which has just been released that works well with Google Drive.
By using Syncdocs, Google Drive and Docs users are not restricted to syncing just one desktop folder to the cloud. Syncdocs makes it child’s play to sync any folders on their computer. External drives and network folders can be fully synchronized, too.
Shared Google Docs folders and their contents are also fully synced, as are Office documents. This means a complete, up-do-date copy of Google Drive is available for offline use. Google Docs are converted to Microsoft or Open Office format for easy offline access. Any changes made while offline are synced back when the network is available again.
The file permissions on documents shared online are honored locally, too. This prevents users from changing files they do not have rights to edit.
A typical Google user has more than one account, typically separating personal and a work emails and files. While the Google Drive desktop application only supports a single account, Syncdocs can sync up to 16 accounts simultaneously.
In addition to file sync, Syncdocs also has backup capabilities. Google Drive is backed by Google’s huge worldwide data centers so it is a great place to store data securely. Workstations can be backed-up to Google’s fast cloud servers for off-site backup. The contents of Google Drive can also be backed up to a local PC or file server for data-retention or compliance purposes. Backups may be scheduled for times of low network traffic.
“With Syncdocs and Google Drive users can now take full advantage of 5GB free storage, and we are seeing a rush into cloud computing” said Donald Recsei, Syncdocs’ product manager.
Google documents are also available right from the user’s Windows desktop with Syncdocs. This means that Microsoft Office is no longer necessary to open or create Word, PowerPoint or Excel files on the PC. Syncdocs also provides real-time collaboration features between Microsoft Word and Google Docs users, easing the transition from legacy systems.
Users can fine-tune their synchronization to Google Drive with many advanced features like:
• mapping of Google Drive as a the G Drive on your PC
• simultaneous sync of multiple Google accounts
• full control over what is synchronized
• versioning and revision history
• full control over sync direction
• data wiping
• easy file upload and sharing integration into Facebook, Twitter, Gmail and Google+
Google Drive and Docs offers 5GB of online storage for free. The full version of Syncdocs is free, users are only charged when syncing a large number of files. The free download of the latest version of Syncdocs is available at syncdocs.com