Keeping up with the times with cloud storage
There’s comfort in knowing that your files are properly backed. You’re free to peruse old pictures and reports at your choosing, and are confident that any new file is in safekeeping. But while an external hard drive is a good option to store such documents, it does come with the risk of physical damage and general wear and tear. Cue Microsoft’s OneDrive, the solution to the latter problem. An online cloud platform with growing storage space and file syncing services.
Many didn't know this, but OneDrive actually precedes its bigger competitions iCloud and Google Drive. Of course, everyone learns from their mistakes and it seems that the pioneer tech company made sure to up OneDrive’s game.
Microsoft definitely did not want to be left behind in the cloud storage service market. A surprising fact, OneDrive actually precedes its bigger competitions iCloud and Google Drive. Because of past issues with privacy and security, it had a pretty rough start in the race. Of course, everyone learns from their mistakes and it seems that the pioneer tech company made sure to up OneDrive's game.
Onedrive makes collaboration easier by working with other Microsoft Office programs. It also made communication seamless by integrating with other products, such as Skype and Outlook. Signing up for its free plan gives you access to edit your files online through the Microsoft Office Online app. But if you plan on using the desktop program, you’ll have to subscribe to Office 365 or their business plan to get access to this feature.
This could storage suite automatically saves photos and videos from devices you connect to your computer. You can sort photos by albums, view them on slideshows, and even perform basic edits by rotating or adding effects. OneDrive also lets you share your files and folders through links. You can also set access permission to decide who can edit or view documents.
Driving with OneDrive
OneDrive's desktop suite is pretty simple. Access it by clicking on the cloud icon on your system tray. Once done, a thin window pops up, giving you easy access to your sync folder to check sync status and tweak drive settings. It also has a link that leads you to the web client. You will see everything you need in this tiny window.
Much like Dropbox, OneDrive uses the standard sync model. This means that any file or folder you place on the sync folder on your PC will automatically be stored on your hard drive and in the cloud. Moving files is also rather simple: just right-click on the document and select the "move to OneDrive" option, and voilà. If you plan on syncing only specific folders, go to the settings menu of the desktop program and update the folders that it automatically selected. Uploading and downloading files will work without a hitch. The suite las little effect on your system's resources so that you can still perform other tasks.
Microsoft's online help center is readily available if you have any concerns with your OneDrive. It covers almost all topics such as getting started, sharing and collaboration, accounts and storage, and troubleshooting. They also have videos and training pages to guide you.
Should you have further doubts, just reach customer support through email. Support agents will assist you with your queries at a relatively fast turnaround time. Although there's no telephone or chat support, you may find the information you need through the community forum. Overall, OneDrive's support customer care system appears rather efficient.
Where can you run this program?
OneDrive supports both Windows and macOS. It works seamlessly on Windows 7-10 and its interface on Mac is just as comfortable to use. Unfortunately, OneDrive does not have a Linux client.
Android and iOS users can also access their OneDrive accounts through mobile applications. It covers all the essentials including offline access. The business card scanning capabilities is an added feature on the software's mobile version to help keep your contacts in check. You can also view your files on the go using the app but will need to download other programs for you to make edits.
Is there a better alternative?
Google Drive is one of the first names that pop into other people's heads when talking about cloud storage. It’s famously convenient, especially for Google account holders who don't need to go the extra mile in creating a separate account for their documents. Like OneDrive, it allows collaboration through Google Docs, Google Sheets, and more. The best part about their service is the hefty 15 GB initial storage--much bigger than what their Microsoft counterpart offers.
pCloud joins the top ranks as it continues to grow exponentially. Its desktop app will not use your computer's storage by default. Once you upload your files on their application, you can immediately delete it from your computer to save memory. No need to download the app again, given that you can open the files anytime. It even allows users to move files from Dropbox to their app worry-free.
OneDrive may not be the best out there, but it's not the worst either. Installing the desktop application on your computer is easy and you can navigate through the program effortlessly. It also offers its users all the necessary components needed from a cloud-storage software.
Should you download it?
Yes. If you've already signed up for Office 360, it's only wise to take advantage of OneDrive. However, if you're planning on signing up for a free account, there are other cloud storage service providers that offer bigger spaces.
- Simple and easy to navigate
- Perfect for file sharing and co-editing
- Integrates with wide selection of apps
- Very limited storage on the free plan
- No compatibility with Linux
- No zero-knowledge encryption