No PC to PC sync in new SkyDrive

By Kip Kniskern | Posted February 23, 2012 110 comments

FileWinLive-syncOne of the questions our commenters asked about the upcoming integration of Windows Live Mesh into SkyDrive was “what about direct Device to Device synchronization?”.  Currently, you can use Windows Live Mesh to sync folders from device to device, with the Live Mesh service only used as a type of middleman.  But it looks like we’re not going to be getting a full integration of current Live Mesh functionality once it’s folded into SkyDrive.

As another commenter, Stefan, noted, Mike Torres from SkyDrive clarified in the comments on the Windows 8 blog post that you won’t be able to set up device to device sync, only “device to SkyDrive”.  Here’s the quote:

We won’t be offering a way to sync between PCs without using the cloud as we’ve found that it adds complexity. Both technical complexity as well as, more importantly, complexity in the overall user model. The SkyDrive model is really quite simple in that it’s “cloud-first” and not “cloud-optional” which means you no longer have to worry about the timing of various PCs being online to sync, or having files that are only available on PCs but not through SkyDrive.com or mobile devices. Conflicts are far less likely as well since the cloud is always "online". The fetch feature addresses the need to “get back” to stuff that you haven’t put in SkyDrive yet. There are tradeoffs either way, we realize that, but we decided to focus on a simple model and really work to get that right.

In fact, Omar Shahine, Mike Torres, and even Steven Sinofsky have been quite active in answering questions on the SkyDrive post.  We went through and tried to pull out the answers that provide bits of new information, here’s a quick summary:

  • The SkyDrive folder (single) is by default at %userprofile%SkyDrive #, but can be set to another location via the UI.  You can add SkyDrive (sub)folders to new or existing libraries, and change the location of My Documents, etc., to be in the SkyDrive folder #.
  • You can set the default save location for libraries to be SkyDrive #.
  • No file type restrictions for files in the Metro Style or Windows Explorer apps.  The current restrictions on file types via the API are still in place #.
  • No specifics on content restrictions at this time, other than the Code of Conduct #.
  • Remote Access/fetch is optional #.

In addition, Mike Torres also expounded a bit on the difference between how Microsoft sees SkyDrive and how it is different than a backup solution:

Mike Torres # @pmbAustin: Many people rely on sync or cloud storage services to provide backup. However, as you may know, backup has a different set of needs when compared with sync or cloud storage. For example, between the two of us we employ numerous onsite and offsite backup technologies like RAID-1, cloud backup solutions like Crashplan, offsite backups of the backups, and BitLocker to secure backed up data. If you only rely on cloud storage for your data the reality is that when you lose data, cloud storage often doesn’t provide “instant” or “easy” restore of the data. For example if you had 1 terabyte of cloud storage it would likely take about 2 weeks to “download” all that data all over again, assuming continuous 1MB download speed (1TB = 1,000,000MB = 278 hours at 1MB/sec). Of course, your data is “safe” in SkyDrive but it’s not the best option for true backup today. We’ve really focused on making SkyDrive a great place to store files you want to get to from many devices or share with other people. Sync provides benefits that when combined with cloud storage and local backup in Windows give you robust file availability, easy access and sharing.

Throughout the comments, Omar and Mike promise more to come in future blog posts about SkyDrive, can’t wait!

    Posted February 23rd, 2012 at 10:53 am
    Category: News
    Tags: Live Mesh, SkyDrive
    • KevC4D

      While I don’t really sync files like that often anymore, leaving this feature out is not good.

    • KevC4D

      While I don’t really sync files like that often anymore, leaving this feature out is not good.

    • Guest

      so does this mean if for example, I create a file on my desktop, it will sync to skydrive and then when i go on my tablet it will sync to that pc as well? because thats all i really care about, and if this is the way its going to be done its great, no need for pc-2-pc sync. as long as pc-2-skydrive and skydrive-2-pc is in place

      • starkenator

        Yes, that is what it means.

      • http://www.LiveSide.net Kip Kniskern – LiveSide.net

        A good question, but I believe you will be able to do what you say.  The problem with no pc-to-pc sync is that you may quickly use up your 25 gb of storage just trying to get files synced between laptop and desktop, for example.

        • Siddarth Malhotra

           Well, paid storage plans aren’t expensive ;-)

          • http://about.me/lapsrj Leandro

            What if i have two computers in the same network and I want sync a 10gb folder between they? It will send the files to SkyDrive and after download it in the other PC or will sync thru my network?

            • jnt

              It sounds like it’ll be like Sugarsync (a great service by the way). It’ll go Skydrive first, then download to your other PC.  You could always copy it over via your network, and if it’s smart enough (which Mesh has been to date), it’ll recognize they’re the same and simply index it, and not duplicate it.

        • Guest

          ok, that makes sense, will definetley buy more storage if that becomes avaliable. im usually on another network by the time i need the files on another pc. but i can see the problem with waiting a long time for all of the files to sync the first time or if you want to sync them on your local network all the time.

        • cuz84d

           why do that when you can just put files on an external device and plug and play.

    • Guest

      so does this mean if for example, I create a file on my desktop, it will sync to skydrive and then when i go on my tablet it will sync to that pc as well? because thats all i really care about, and if this is the way its going to be done its great, no need for pc-2-pc sync. as long as pc-2-skydrive and skydrive-2-pc is in place

      • starkenator

        Yes, that is what it means.

      • http://www.LiveSide.net Kip Kniskern – LiveSide.net

        A good question, but I believe you will be able to do what you say.  The problem with no pc-to-pc sync is that you may quickly use up your 25 gb of storage just trying to get files synced between laptop and desktop, for example.

        • Siddarth Malhotra

           Well, paid storage plans aren’t expensive ;-)

          • http://about.me/lapsrj Leandro

            What if i have two computers in the same network and I want sync a 10gb folder between they? It will send the files to SkyDrive and after download it in the other PC or will sync thru my network?

            • jnt

              It sounds like it’ll be like Sugarsync (a great service by the way). It’ll go Skydrive first, then download to your other PC.  You could always copy it over via your network, and if it’s smart enough (which Mesh has been to date), it’ll recognize they’re the same and simply index it, and not duplicate it.

        • Guest

          ok, that makes sense, will definetley buy more storage if that becomes avaliable. im usually on another network by the time i need the files on another pc. but i can see the problem with waiting a long time for all of the files to sync the first time or if you want to sync them on your local network all the time.

        • wizkid

           why do that when you can just put files on an external device and plug and play.

    • starkenator

      I am not bothered with the lack of direct pc to pc sync. I never really used it because of limits on file size as I recall. I am just glad to get the dropbox like file syncing with reasonably large storage space.

    • starkenator

      I am not bothered with the lack of direct pc to pc sync. I never really used it because of limits on file size as I recall. I am just glad to get the dropbox like file syncing with reasonably large storage space.

    • Vptg87

      It seems that they don’t have any marketer in the team, they’re program managers and that’s it. There are no costs of keeping this P2P feature on, but lots of people will leave Mesh and direct to the competitors rather than new SkyDrive. Microsoft forgets that this small audience is very influent and often THEY ARE who determines which soft will be installed on “lamer”‘s computer.

      • starkenator

        Who else offers PC to PC sync without syncing to the cloud? I am sure there are services like this but why don’t you use a combination of those services (SyncToy comes to mind for me) and SkyDrive?

        • Vptg87

          Don’t want to post advertising and some sort of marketing research here, but you can find lots of services that combine any type of sync in one single app. Just one example I’m looking at as a real alternative solution http://allwaysync.com . I know SyncToy, but it’s buggy on big volumes of information and is not able to Sync between different subnets. For example, I have my work desktop PC, I have one PC at my wife’s parents house, I have laptop that always connects to LTE network and I don’t use WiFi on it – so Sync Toy would be really a mess.
          I’m not sure if new SkyDrive will be a solution for me since there a few limitations that Mesh doesn’t have (as I said – subnets, file size, overall data size, ability to use random folders – not just folders nested in SkyDrive root folder).
          And last doubt I have about new SkyDrive – is actual free size. Just read LiveSide’s posts – there will be single sync folder, file limit will be increased to match DropBox, there will be paid storage… Don’t you think that they’re going to decrease the free storage? Screenshot shows that it will be 25 Gb stills, and I really hope this will be true.
          Of course I agree that for huge mass of people new concept will work, the only thing that I’m trying to say is that sometimes extra functionality is a very valuable gift for “heroes” while optional for mainstream users.

          • starkenator

            I suppose but there are very few companies I trust my data to beside Microsoft and the full Windows integration seals it for me. If I need more storage I will just pay for it.

            • jnt

              Dropbox does peer to peer when it recognizes you’re on the same network.

    • Vptg87

      It seems that they don’t have any marketer in the team, they’re program managers and that’s it. There are no costs of keeping this P2P feature on, but lots of people will leave Mesh and direct to the competitors rather than new SkyDrive. Microsoft forgets that this small audience is very influent and often THEY ARE who determines which soft will be installed on “lamer”‘s computer.

      • starkenator

        Who else offers PC to PC sync without syncing to the cloud? I am sure there are services like this but why don’t you use a combination of those services (SyncToy comes to mind for me) and SkyDrive?

        • Vptg87

          Don’t want to post advertising and some sort of marketing research here, but you can find lots of services that combine any type of sync in one single app. Just one example I’m looking at as a real alternative solution http://allwaysync.com . I know SyncToy, but it’s buggy on big volumes of information and is not able to Sync between different subnets. For example, I have my work desktop PC, I have one PC at my wife’s parents house, I have laptop that always connects to LTE network and I don’t use WiFi on it – so Sync Toy would be really a mess.
          I’m not sure if new SkyDrive will be a solution for me since there a few limitations that Mesh doesn’t have (as I said – subnets, file size, overall data size, ability to use random folders – not just folders nested in SkyDrive root folder).
          And last doubt I have about new SkyDrive – is actual free size. Just read LiveSide’s posts – there will be single sync folder, file limit will be increased to match DropBox, there will be paid storage… Don’t you think that they’re going to decrease the free storage? Screenshot shows that it will be 25 Gb stills, and I really hope this will be true.
          Of course I agree that for huge mass of people new concept will work, the only thing that I’m trying to say is that sometimes extra functionality is a very valuable gift for “heroes” while optional for mainstream users.

          • starkenator

            I suppose but there are very few companies I trust my data to beside Microsoft and the full Windows integration seals it for me. If I need more storage I will just pay for it.

            • jnt

              Dropbox does peer to peer when it recognizes you’re on the same network.

    • http://www.facebook.com/chris.strevel Christian Strevel

      yeah it is just going to work like an ubiquitous folder … but not synching to every device (work and home pc) when you boot up.

    • http://www.facebook.com/chris.strevel Christian Strevel

      yeah it is just going to work like an ubiquitous folder … but not synching to every device (work and home pc) when you boot up.

    • http://gregsedwards.wordpress.com Greg Edwards

      I kind of agree with Microsoft on this one. I love the idea of Live Mesh and have used it occasionally, but in practical terms, it was always kind of glitchy.

      For instance, at one point I used Live Mesh to replicate my media out to my various HTPCs, because I found Media Center’s libraries really do work better with local content. Not only did the initial sync take forever, but it also frequently created duplicate copies of files, presumably because they were changed on one machine and couldn’t be resolved to a corresponding file on the other machine. So I’d end up with “Music Track,” “Music Track – Bonus Room”, and “Music Track – Living Room.”

      Here’s my thought, if SkyDrive is integrated into the OS/Explorer as well as they claim it will be, then pushing/pulling content on demand from a central source that’s always available is probably all most people really want or need. I’m guessing that it’s only a very small demographic of the geek set who really cares about replicating their data across multiple devices. After all, do you care about downloading a copy of their email from the server these days? Of course not.

      On the other hand, by hosting your content on SkyDrive, you’ll be subject to SkyDrive’s various data caps and copyright limitations, so caveat emptor.

      • Ray Wall

         I agree.  I have also found Mesh to be a bit flaky. Having to have two (or more) PCs on to sync really made synchronizing inconvenient.  I think they made the right decision.

    • http://gregsedwards.wordpress.com/ Greg Edwards

      I kind of agree with Microsoft on this one. I love the idea of Live Mesh and have used it occasionally, but in practical terms, it was always kind of glitchy.

      For instance, at one point I used Live Mesh to replicate my media out to my various HTPCs, because I found Media Center’s libraries really do work better with local content. Not only did the initial sync take forever, but it also frequently created duplicate copies of files, presumably because they were changed on one machine and couldn’t be resolved to a corresponding file on the other machine. So I’d end up with “Music Track,” “Music Track – Bonus Room”, and “Music Track – Living Room.”

      Here’s my thought, if SkyDrive is integrated into the OS/Explorer as well as they claim it will be, then pushing/pulling content on demand from a central source that’s always available is probably all most people really want or need. I’m guessing that it’s only a very small demographic of the geek set who really cares about replicating their data across multiple devices. After all, do you care about downloading a copy of their email from the server these days? Of course not.

      On the other hand, by hosting your content on SkyDrive, you’ll be subject to SkyDrive’s various data caps and copyright limitations, so caveat emptor.

      • Ray Wall

         I agree.  I have also found Mesh to be a bit flaky. Having to have two (or more) PCs on to sync really made synchronizing inconvenient.  I think they made the right decision.

    • Siddarth Malhotra

      If a single X:…Skydrive folder is a problem for you, try using SYMLINKS (Google it).
      I use them to overcome the same one-folder-for-all problem in Dropbox. :-)

    • Siddarth Malhotra

      If a single X:…Skydrive folder is a problem for you, try using SYMLINKS (Google it).
      I use them to overcome the same one-folder-for-all problem in Dropbox. :-)

    • http://teddyotero.com Teddy M. Otero IV

      I live and breathe Live Mesh daily. If I need to get to my home computer from work or vice versa, it’s free and easy. If I need to login to my Mom’s computer from across town to help her do something she doesn’t understand, viola. Is the remote desktop portion of Live Mesh going to remain intact in some form?

      I also use Live Mesh to sync a dozen large folders across a half-dozen PCs. For example, I keep the “My Pictures” folder synced between my computer and my wife’s, so when she uploads new pictures they show up on my computer and vice versa. It’s also a slight redundancy backup feature for us, in case a hard drive fails we still have all the pictures. I also sync work files between home and work so that I can go home and pick right back up where I left off. Ironically, I don’t use the SkyDrive feature of Live Mesh at all because it’s so small.

      For me, this lack of PC to PC sharing is an ABSOLUTE DEAL BREAKER. I understand that I can achieve similar functionality using SkyDrive by purchasing [lots and lots of] extra GBs, but where does that end? How much does that cost? I don’t want cloud storage – I just want syncing between computers. So what is my alternative?

      • cuz84d

         get a router for your network.. and do robocopy.

      • MissRed

        How do you login to the other pc without it asking for a password. I connect on my network and i have to be at the second pc to enter my password. Last time i attempted to use Remote is logged the second pc out and wanted my Windows password.

        Clearly i’m doing something wrong here :(

    • http://teddyotero.com/ drokkon

      I live and breathe Live Mesh daily. If I need to get to my home computer from work or vice versa, it’s free and easy. If I need to login to my Mom’s computer from across town to help her do something she doesn’t understand, viola. Is the remote desktop portion of Live Mesh going to remain intact in some form?

      I also use Live Mesh to sync a dozen large folders across a half-dozen PCs. For example, I keep the “My Pictures” folder synced between my computer and my wife’s, so when she uploads new pictures they show up on my computer and vice versa. It’s also a slight redundancy backup feature for us, in case a hard drive fails we still have all the pictures. I also sync work files between home and work so that I can go home and pick right back up where I left off. Ironically, I don’t use the SkyDrive feature of Live Mesh at all because it’s so small.

      For me, this lack of PC to PC sharing is an ABSOLUTE DEAL BREAKER. I understand that I can achieve similar functionality using SkyDrive by purchasing [lots and lots of] extra GBs, but where does that end? How much does that cost? I don’t want cloud storage – I just want syncing between computers. So what is my alternative?

      • wizkid

         get a router for your network.. and do robocopy.

      • MissRed

        How do you login to the other pc without it asking for a password. I connect on my network and i have to be at the second pc to enter my password. Last time i attempted to use Remote is logged the second pc out and wanted my Windows password.

        Clearly i’m doing something wrong here :(

    • http://about.me/lapsrj Leandro

      Well, I will lose all my backup structure. Actually I sync the big folders(like the photos one) between my computers and the small ones I also sync with the cloud. It’s always updated and if a hard drive fails I will have a backup, also I have the files everywhere. Now I will need find a new way of syncing my files.

      One thing that I’m worried about is the remote PC access. One day I needed to get a image in my PC, create a safe area in it using photoshop and then sent it to a email. It’s look like we will no longer have a function like this. The forget a file solution isn’t enough in situations like that.

      With this new SkyDrive i will have my main files in the cloud, but i will lose all the things that i actually do with mesh.

      • http://teddyotero.com Teddy M. Otero IV

        My thoughts exactly.

      • cuz84d

        You know, if you actually read what Steven wrote and figure out how to customize windows, then he said:  You could just do SkydriveMy Photos*.* and SkydriveMy Music*.*
        and SkydriveMy Videos*.* SkydriveMy Documents*.* and move your userMy Photos and userMy
        Music etc and change the Library to point to the new Skydrive folders instead.. that way you got Libraries and Skydrive together synced.

        • http://about.me/lapsrj Leandro

          One thing that I always loved in live mesh is that i choose the folders, i don’t need to put the files into a folder.

          And that’s what I will do and I can live that way, but I won’t be able to sync large folders in that way(125GB+). My concern is about computers in the same network. In Live Mesh it will sync by the network, in this new SkyDrive it will be by the network or by the internet?

          And that’s not so simple because doing this using the internet will take longer and some people, like me, have bandwidth limit(and in my case is ridiculous: 80GB in a 10Mb conection. Luckily my ISP never put it in practice with me). 

          • jnt

            I just now realized (don’t know how I missed it) that SkyDrive will be “limited” to a single central folder.  Yes, I know you can do symlinks, but those can be a headache for the average user, or layman.  This will just fuel SugarSync’s business even more, I would imagine. 

    • http://about.me/lapsrj Leandro

      Well, I will lose all my backup structure. Actually I sync the big folders(like the photos one) between my computers and the small ones I also sync with the cloud. It’s always updated and if a hard drive fails I will have a backup, also I have the files everywhere. Now I will need find a new way of syncing my files.

      One thing that I’m worried about is the remote PC access. One day I needed to get a image in my PC, create a safe area in it using photoshop and then sent it to a email. It’s look like we will no longer have a function like this. The forget a file solution isn’t enough in situations like that.

      With this new SkyDrive i will have my main files in the cloud, but i will lose all the things that i actually do with mesh.

      • http://teddyotero.com/ drokkon

        My thoughts exactly.

      • wizkid

        You know, if you actually read what Steven wrote and figure out how to customize windows, then he said:  You could just do SkydriveMy Photos*.* and SkydriveMy Music*.*
        and SkydriveMy Videos*.* SkydriveMy Documents*.* and move your userMy Photos and userMy
        Music etc and change the Library to point to the new Skydrive folders instead.. that way you got Libraries and Skydrive together synced.

        • http://about.me/lapsrj Leandro

          One thing that I always loved in live mesh is that i choose the folders, i don’t need to put the files into a folder.

          And that’s what I will do and I can live that way, but I won’t be able to sync large folders in that way(125GB+). My concern is about computers in the same network. In Live Mesh it will sync by the network, in this new SkyDrive it will be by the network or by the internet?

          And that’s not so simple because doing this using the internet will take longer and some people, like me, have bandwidth limit(and in my case is ridiculous: 80GB in a 10Mb conection. Luckily my ISP never put it in practice with me). 

          • jnt

            I just now realized (don’t know how I missed it) that SkyDrive will be “limited” to a single central folder.  Yes, I know you can do symlinks, but those can be a headache for the average user, or layman.  This will just fuel SugarSync’s business even more, I would imagine. 

    • http://twitter.com/jwk6 Jason Kohlhoff

      I’m that commentor!  You’re welcome, Kip!  ;-)

      The nice thing about Device to Device sync is that it doesn’t have the same folder and file count, and file size restrictions.  Live Mesh can sync a 40 GB file.

      Here’s a little FolderShare history for the new people – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/FolderShare

      Hopefully the new versions of SkyDrive will remove and/or relax more of these restrictions.

    • Jason Kohlhoff

      I’m that commentor!  You’re welcome, Kip!  ;-)

      The nice thing about Device to Device sync is that it doesn’t have the same folder and file count, and file size restrictions.  Live Mesh can sync a 40 GB file.

      Here’s a little FolderShare history for the new people – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/FolderShare

      Hopefully the new versions of SkyDrive will remove and/or relax more of these restrictions.

    • http://profiles.yahoo.com/u/6G3ZZJCHOLYP3S5CRCIHQ7WDSE MVIM

      Why should I have to waste gigabytes of my online “cloud storage” just to sync files between my PCs? This is an awful downgrade. If I wanted this kind of functionality, I would have just used Dropbox.

      • Emi Cyberschreiber

        yeah becasue Windows doesn’t have local network sharing like Homegroups. what a downgrade *rolling eyes*

        • http://teddyotero.com Teddy M. Otero IV

          I’m sorry…do Homegroups allow for auto syncing of folders? Can I connect my work computer to my homegroup to share files and remote desktop? Mmhm.

          • http://www.facebook.com/sirtwist George A. Roberts IV

            No … Homegroups allow for getting at the files where they reside easily. I’ve used Live Mesh before and I can sort of see the appeal, but I think the point Microsoft is making here is that most people don’t have a need to have multiple copies of the same files in sync across multiple computers. They have a desire to be able to get at their files wherever they are, which is what SkyDrive enables.

            And as for remote access (which I’ve seen mentioned numerous times in the comments on this post), Windows already has built in terminal services and a built-in terminal services client. It’s simple enough to do a little port forwarding for port 3389. Run mstsc and boom, you’re in.

          • Emi Cyberschreiber

            he said “pc to pc” and alot of gigabytes, in another site he mentioned music. why would you want to sync 10 gb of music? its not like you will change those files everyday.

            and Windows Network has “offline files” which are synched to you.

            and skydrive will allow synching, thats my point. if you need files on the cloud you will sync there, if you need to copy a 45gb video files like i did last time, it would be silly to do it that way. because synching with mesh its not the bestway. specially if you aren’t going to change those files. but you can use homeground to Access to those files easily and copy and paste or Access from another computer the files you need… and then if you need files offline you can just click “always available offline” and if files are changed they will get synched.

            and there are too many ways to remote desktop. from using windows remote desktop to a nice free apps like teamviewer. and of course skydrive will work for sharing files. thats the whole point of getting rid of “sync” and leave it just as skydrive with sync features, because yeah skydrive will sync files, and you can use it as any folder in windows. from any computer you install skydrive desktop app.

            • http://teddyotero.com/ drokkon

              However, if you are someone who ADDS music or videos on a daily basis,  or photos like I do, and the folders are in the dozens or hundreds of gigabytes, then keeping folders synced across devices without the cloud is imperative.

              I know that MS is tracking usage, and is making decisions based on their data, and I know there are plenty of alternatives to both syncing and remote desktop, but that doesn’t mean we can’t lament the disappearing of a program that does them both in an easy, comfortable way.

            • Emi Cyberschreiber

              and thats why i said about homegroups (since it creates easily a local network sharing) and you can have your files offline. they will copy over your computer. or if you don’t need to have your music exactly in your computer you can just access to it without having to copy it to your computer.

              they are getting rid of Mesh, because in my world 25gb its better than 5gb. and skydrive is easy to reach, specially if you compare it to mesh sync.

              if you need your content over skydrive and synched over your computers skydirve will be the best way. if you only want to copy music, there are other methods. because we are talking from PC to PC without going to skydrive for this. and offline files its one.
              also there will be file fetching on skydrive, yeah you have to go to skydrive but it will help if you forgot to sync a file you need it.

              have you used offline files at least? have you tried to sync contents through that?
              i wont talk about remote desktop since my method would be different than you, and it doesn’t mean Microsoft will remove being able to use live mesh for that.
              but for my opinion using live mesh to sync 10gb of music, its silly. but thats my opinion, i don’t know if you really understand what they are doing with skydrive getting rid of mesh, but still your concerns wont make these features return, and we still don’t get this new skydrive to be sure mesh will be able to be used for what you want, or it will not be able to be used anymore.

      • http://profiles.yahoo.com/u/6G3ZZJCHOLYP3S5CRCIHQ7WDSE MVIM

        To those advising that I use HomeGroups, I do on my local network. But not all of my computers are local. One is at work, and another is a laptop that is usually connected to other remote networks. I know of no alternative tool that does what Live Mesh does, and I am truly disappointed and frustrated that I will now have to waste money buying more SkyDrive storage space to sync what I used to sync PC-to-PC for free. I don’t need the “reliability” of the cloud for these files, but remote syncing is a must; and with this change they are forcing a feature on me that I don’t need, while taking away one that I do.

    • http://profiles.yahoo.com/u/6G3ZZJCHOLYP3S5CRCIHQ7WDSE MVIM

      Why should I have to waste gigabytes of my online “cloud storage” just to sync files between my PCs? This is an awful downgrade. If I wanted this kind of functionality, I would have just used Dropbox.

      • Emi the Strange

        yeah becasue Windows doesn’t have local network sharing like Homegroups. what a downgrade *rolling eyes*

        • http://teddyotero.com/ drokkon

          I’m sorry…do Homegroups allow for auto syncing of folders? Can I connect my work computer to my homegroup to share files and remote desktop? Mmhm.

          • http://www.facebook.com/sirtwist George A. Roberts IV

            No … Homegroups allow for getting at the files where they reside easily. I’ve used Live Mesh before and I can sort of see the appeal, but I think the point Microsoft is making here is that most people don’t have a need to have multiple copies of the same files in sync across multiple computers. They have a desire to be able to get at their files wherever they are, which is what SkyDrive enables.

            And as for remote access (which I’ve seen mentioned numerous times in the comments on this post), Windows already has built in terminal services and a built-in terminal services client. It’s simple enough to do a little port forwarding for port 3389. Run mstsc and boom, you’re in.

          • Emi the Strange

            he said “pc to pc” and alot of gigabytes, in another site he mentioned music. why would you want to sync 10 gb of music? its not like you will change those files everyday.

            and Windows Network has “offline files” which are synched to you.

            and skydrive will allow synching, thats my point. if you need files on the cloud you will sync there, if you need to copy a 45gb video files like i did last time, it would be silly to do it that way. because synching with mesh its not the bestway. specially if you aren’t going to change those files. but you can use homeground to Access to those files easily and copy and paste or Access from another computer the files you need… and then if you need files offline you can just click “always available offline” and if files are changed they will get synched.

            and there are too many ways to remote desktop. from using windows remote desktop to a nice free apps like teamviewer. and of course skydrive will work for sharing files. thats the whole point of getting rid of “sync” and leave it just as skydrive with sync features, because yeah skydrive will sync files, and you can use it as any folder in windows. from any computer you install skydrive desktop app.

            • http://teddyotero.com/ drokkon

              However, if you are someone who ADDS music or videos on a daily basis,  or photos like I do, and the folders are in the dozens or hundreds of gigabytes, then keeping folders synced across devices without the cloud is imperative.

              I know that MS is tracking usage, and is making decisions based on their data, and I know there are plenty of alternatives to both syncing and remote desktop, but that doesn’t mean we can’t lament the disappearing of a program that does them both in an easy, comfortable way.

            • Emi the Strange

              and thats why i said about homegroups (since it creates easily a local network sharing) and you can have your files offline. they will copy over your computer. or if you don’t need to have your music exactly in your computer you can just access to it without having to copy it to your computer.

              they are getting rid of Mesh, because in my world 25gb its better than 5gb. and skydrive is easy to reach, specially if you compare it to mesh sync.

              if you need your content over skydrive and synched over your computers skydirve will be the best way. if you only want to copy music, there are other methods. because we are talking from PC to PC without going to skydrive for this. and offline files its one.
              also there will be file fetching on skydrive, yeah you have to go to skydrive but it will help if you forgot to sync a file you need it.

              have you used offline files at least? have you tried to sync contents through that?
              i wont talk about remote desktop since my method would be different than you, and it doesn’t mean Microsoft will remove being able to use live mesh for that.
              but for my opinion using live mesh to sync 10gb of music, its silly. but thats my opinion, i don’t know if you really understand what they are doing with skydrive getting rid of mesh, but still your concerns wont make these features return, and we still don’t get this new skydrive to be sure mesh will be able to be used for what you want, or it will not be able to be used anymore.

      • http://profiles.yahoo.com/u/6G3ZZJCHOLYP3S5CRCIHQ7WDSE MVIM

        To those advising that I use HomeGroups, I do on my local network. But not all of my computers are local. One is at work, and another is a laptop that is usually connected to other remote networks. I know of no alternative tool that does what Live Mesh does, and I am truly disappointed and frustrated that I will now have to waste money buying more SkyDrive storage space to sync what I used to sync PC-to-PC for free. I don’t need the “reliability” of the cloud for these files, but remote syncing is a must; and with this change they are forcing a feature on me that I don’t need, while taking away one that I do.

    • Chris Barth

      For those that will need Live Mesh functionality after it’s gone have a look at AeroFS.

    • Chris Barth

      For those that will need Live Mesh functionality after it’s gone have a look at AeroFS.

    • RRoy

      Wow. As an ex-softie, I can’t believe how poorly decisions are made. Then again, I’m sure folks are looking at usage stats and figuring out that they can drop some users and favor others. Live Mesh is the last Microsoft service I’m currently using to sync large volumes of files between home/work/friends devices, and now Microsoft goes and kills it. This is the final nail for me as I explore a complete Microsoft-less world. It’s truly liberating, but I still haven’t found anything to compare to Live Mesh…sadly.

      • http://teddyotero.com/ drokkon

        As a designer my work computer is a Mac, and being able to sync work files between home PC and work Mac without the limits of a cloud was a killer feature for me.

    • RRoy

      Wow. As an ex-softie, I can’t believe how poorly decisions are made. Then again, I’m sure folks are looking at usage stats and figuring out that they can drop some users and favor others. Live Mesh is the last Microsoft service I’m currently using to sync large volumes of files between home/work/friends devices, and now Microsoft goes and kills it. This is the final nail for me as I explore a complete Microsoft-less world. It’s truly liberating, but I still haven’t found anything to compare to Live Mesh…sadly.

      • http://teddyotero.com/ drokkon

        As a designer my work computer is a Mac, and being able to sync work files between home PC and work Mac without the limits of a cloud was a killer feature for me.

    • Pvrk_usa

      I am amazed at this navel gazing. All this confusing overlap between services like Live mesh, skydrive, etc only turns customers turned-off bewildered. I don’t know when Microsoft starts defining  a single product starting from customer ground-up. Forget about your internal versions and waves and stop being 5 years late with products. The innovations in products like Dropbox , Evernote is amazing. I used to be a onenote customer but not anymore after using evernote. Samkething with Skydrive. You guys go on debating LiveMesh and Skydrive. World moves on .. Stop defining products  based on internal Microsoft organizations and and start with customers

    • Pvrk_usa

      I am amazed at this navel gazing. All this confusing overlap between services like Live mesh, skydrive, etc only turns customers turned-off bewildered. I don’t know when Microsoft starts defining  a single product starting from customer ground-up. Forget about your internal versions and waves and stop being 5 years late with products. The innovations in products like Dropbox , Evernote is amazing. I used to be a onenote customer but not anymore after using evernote. Samkething with Skydrive. You guys go on debating LiveMesh and Skydrive. World moves on .. Stop defining products  based on internal Microsoft organizations and and start with customers

    • MissRed

      For those of us on small data caps and slower connections, this is a bad decision. Typical Microsoft really, they give with one hand and take away with the other.

    • MissRed

      For those of us on small data caps and slower connections, this is a bad decision. Typical Microsoft really, they give with one hand and take away with the other.

    • Tim

      It’s a horrible decision to remove direct device2device sync!! MS is turning Live Mesh into a Dropbox clone with Metro interface. Why on earth are they doing this? Because it adds complexity? Well you can always hide complexity within advanced settings… They should let Live Mesh live on as a separate product.

      • http://teddyotero.com/ drokkon

        Unfortunately, Microsoft is out of the pioneering game and into the copying others’ success, at least in the consumer realm.

        They abandoned Windows Mobile and copied the locked down iOS, the only “innovation” being the Metro interface. Don’t get me wrong, I absolutely love my Windows Phone, but I know that Metro aside, it’s playing catch up to iOS and Android, feature-wise.

        MS may have been first to tablets, but Apple was the first to make them successful, so Windows 8 Metro is also a catch-up move.

        Mesh and Skydrive and OneNote are great little systems in their own right, but most of the world is talking about GoToMyPC, Dropbox, and Evernote – so Microsoft figures why not just strip features from their unique offerings and turn them into little clones of the successful products so they can compete.

        It all makes financial sense, and unfortunately that’s the only thing I expect any company to pursue.

    • Tim

      It’s a horrible decision to remove direct device2device sync!! MS is turning Live Mesh into a Dropbox clone with Metro interface. Why on earth are they doing this? Because it adds complexity? Well you can always hide complexity within advanced settings… They should let Live Mesh live on as a separate product.

      • http://teddyotero.com/ drokkon

        Unfortunately, Microsoft is out of the pioneering game and into the copying others’ success, at least in the consumer realm.

        They abandoned Windows Mobile and copied the locked down iOS, the only “innovation” being the Metro interface. Don’t get me wrong, I absolutely love my Windows Phone, but I know that Metro aside, it’s playing catch up to iOS and Android, feature-wise.

        MS may have been first to tablets, but Apple was the first to make them successful, so Windows 8 Metro is also a catch-up move.

        Mesh and Skydrive and OneNote are great little systems in their own right, but most of the world is talking about GoToMyPC, Dropbox, and Evernote – so Microsoft figures why not just strip features from their unique offerings and turn them into little clones of the successful products so they can compete.

        It all makes financial sense, and unfortunately that’s the only thing I expect any company to pursue.

    • J Fay

      WOW, what a bad idea. Mesh is working like a charm and they decided to cripple it for the sake of simplicity. From what I’ve read, the only thing that people wanted was to be able to use the whole skydrive for syncing folders, not just a 5 GB separation.

    • J Fay

      WOW, what a bad idea. Mesh is working like a charm and they decided to cripple it for the sake of simplicity. From what I’ve read, the only thing that people wanted was to be able to use the whole skydrive for syncing folders, not just a 5 GB separation.

    • markiz

      As I’ve commented on every skydrive article I came across all over the internet, I hate the implementation. I don’t mind no PC-2-PC, but the decision to just simply copy dropbox with it’s very limited and awkward one folder sync kills it for me. Having to keep my photos in “D:Skydrive” instead in “D:My Pictures” is just plain messy.

    • markiz

      As I’ve commented on every skydrive article I came across all over the internet, I hate the implementation. I don’t mind no PC-2-PC, but the decision to just simply copy dropbox with it’s very limited and awkward one folder sync kills it for me. Having to keep my photos in “D:Skydrive” instead in “D:My Pictures” is just plain messy.

    • Andy D

      This is a major killjoy for me.  My main use of Mesh is to sync my photos and music between my desktop and laptop.  Seeing as I have 28.9 GB of photos I took last year, this decision will drive me away from the service.

      Does anyone have a list of decent PC2PC sync programs? (I’m already going to look into the AeroFS mentioned above)

      For someone who has been using Live Mesh since the betas, this is just a horrible way to integrate it with skydrive.  Cutting half the product out makes no sense.

      • http://teddyotero.com/ drokkon

        Couldn’t have said it better myself. I’ve been using it since its inception as well.

      • Dan

        +1 This is going backwards, going all the way from FolderShare which worked perfectly, to turning SkyDrive into a Dropbox clone.  Not that Dropbox isn’t great, it just doesn’t work well for syncing 50GB of music between machines.

    • http://twitter.com/AndyD33 Andy D

      This is a major killjoy for me.  My main use of Mesh is to sync my photos and music between my desktop and laptop.  Seeing as I have 28.9 GB of photos I took last year, this decision will drive me away from the service.

      Does anyone have a list of decent PC2PC sync programs? (I’m already going to look into the AeroFS mentioned above)

      For someone who has been using Live Mesh since the betas, this is just a horrible way to integrate it with skydrive.  Cutting half the product out makes no sense.

      • http://teddyotero.com/ drokkon

        Couldn’t have said it better myself. I’ve been using it since its inception as well.

      • Dan

        +1 This is going backwards, going all the way from FolderShare which worked perfectly, to turning SkyDrive into a Dropbox clone.  Not that Dropbox isn’t great, it just doesn’t work well for syncing 50GB of music between machines.

    • http://alexsimkin.tumblr.com/ Alex Simkin

      I don’t really mind, as I always sync things to SkyDrive as well as other PCs with Windows Live Mesh. But I can see that it would be a problem for other people.

    • http://doctorwhofan98.wordpress.com/ doctorwhofan98

      I don’t really mind, as I always sync things to SkyDrive as well as other PCs with Windows Live Mesh. But I can see that it would be a problem for other people.

    • W_dang

      I wish they will keep a separate Mesh program for PC to PC sync. I use the Windows Live Mesh everyday, much more than SkyDrive. Live Mesh keep my >20 GB data in 8 different folders synced among 4 PCs and 1 folder synced and shared between my 4 PCs and a colleague’s Mac. I like the ability to select which folders to sync and share, rather than one consolidated folder like Dropbox. This is where Mesh is unique about. I also like the ability to choose which PC to sync a certain folder to because I may not want to sync all 20 GB data among all my PCs. I’m sure there are people syncing >100 GB data among their PCs. So the ability to make the selection is important. I would really miss it if the PC to PC sync function is discontinued.

      My another question would be, if there is just one consolidated SkyDrive, 100 GB in size, how are you going to sync it to a phone with 8 GB or 16 GB storage?

      • JJ

        I am pretty sure you can still choose what to sync in SkyDrive, similar to Mesh. Your phone actually doesn’t really sync with SkyDrive, for example, you can access SkyDrive’s photo using Mango already, and none of the photos are stored in your phone. Same with Word Docs, unless you saved it to your phone (which is not sync).

    • W_dang

      I wish they will keep a separate Mesh program for PC to PC sync. I use the Windows Live Mesh everyday, much more than SkyDrive. Live Mesh keep my >20 GB data in 8 different folders synced among 4 PCs and 1 folder synced and shared between my 4 PCs and a colleague’s Mac. I like the ability to select which folders to sync and share, rather than one consolidated folder like Dropbox. This is where Mesh is unique about. I also like the ability to choose which PC to sync a certain folder to because I may not want to sync all 20 GB data among all my PCs. I’m sure there are people syncing >100 GB data among their PCs. So the ability to make the selection is important. I would really miss it if the PC to PC sync function is discontinued.

      My another question would be, if there is just one consolidated SkyDrive, 100 GB in size, how are you going to sync it to a phone with 8 GB or 16 GB storage?

      • http://www.facebook.com/people/Jer-Ming-Chen/833833653 Jer Ming Chen

        I am pretty sure you can still choose what to sync in SkyDrive, similar to Mesh. Your phone actually doesn’t really sync with SkyDrive, for example, you can access SkyDrive’s photo using Mango already, and none of the photos are stored in your phone. Same with Word Docs, unless you saved it to your phone (which is not sync).

    • JJ

      Scared me a little by the title, but, PC-Cloud-PC still works, which is what I am using. If it is a very large file, I would just use my USB Stick anyway. I am sure there are uses for direct PC-PC sync, but, it is probably easier to use Bit Torrent. BT has automatic resume and works with PC-PCS, which makes more sense if you want to distribute large files over internet. Would be great if MS actually put up a BT tutorial for people who are looking for PC-PC sync. This is the proper way to use BT as well, not the infamous piracy sharing.

    • http://www.facebook.com/people/Jer-Ming-Chen/833833653 Jer Ming Chen

      Scared me a little by the title, but, PC-Cloud-PC still works, which is what I am using. If it is a very large file, I would just use my USB Stick anyway. I am sure there are uses for direct PC-PC sync, but, it is probably easier to use Bit Torrent. BT has automatic resume and works with PC-PCS, which makes more sense if you want to distribute large files over internet. Would be great if MS actually put up a BT tutorial for people who are looking for PC-PC sync. This is the proper way to use BT as well, not the infamous piracy sharing.

    • John Ruby

      REAL Simple Solution for Microsoft
      Let SkyDrive be restructured as they intend, but keep Mesh under Devices and dump the Cloud Storage, so we can still P2P & Remote.

      1. SkyDrive Hub and Spoke sync to Cloud
      2. Mesh solely P2P (LAN or Internet) & Remote Access, still needs LiveID (Cloud) for Device Availability, Notification, NAT, etc

      Microsoft still has the Sync Framework under Dev Tools, http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/sync/bb736753, so someone will have to make a replacement if they drop it.

      I have my Laptop and Desktop synced with over 300 GB, cloud sync does me very poorly as my upload speed is lucky if its over 1 MB. HomeGroups, Offline Folders, etc are all major pains, plus I use Mesh with my Mac Air for important file like customer invoices. Mesh works great as long as I remind my Customers to Close ALL Files before running out the door.

      SkyDrive to sync will be awesome so I don’t have this disjointed cloud storage which is a subset copy of my data already on computers. Last point even though Microsoft (Today) is alot better about privacy than google, I’m not about to put alot of sensitive data hanging out in cloud storage and Microsoft has clearly said this does not replace backups. So P2P with shadowcopied volumes is my best solution for SMBs.

    • John Ruby

      REAL Simple Solution for Microsoft
      Let SkyDrive be restructured as they intend, but keep Mesh under Devices and dump the Cloud Storage, so we can still P2P & Remote.

      1. SkyDrive Hub and Spoke sync to Cloud
      2. Mesh solely P2P (LAN or Internet) & Remote Access, still needs LiveID (Cloud) for Device Availability, Notification, NAT, etc

      Microsoft still has the Sync Framework under Dev Tools, http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/sync/bb736753, so someone will have to make a replacement if they drop it.

      I have my Laptop and Desktop synced with over 300 GB, cloud sync does me very poorly as my upload speed is lucky if its over 1 MB. HomeGroups, Offline Folders, etc are all major pains, plus I use Mesh with my Mac Air for important file like customer invoices. Mesh works great as long as I remind my Customers to Close ALL Files before running out the door.

      SkyDrive to sync will be awesome so I don’t have this disjointed cloud storage which is a subset copy of my data already on computers. Last point even though Microsoft (Today) is alot better about privacy than google, I’m not about to put alot of sensitive data hanging out in cloud storage and Microsoft has clearly said this does not replace backups. So P2P with shadowcopied volumes is my best solution for SMBs.