Monday, February 2, 2009

Groove for File Backup on a Laptop

When my laptop lost the hard drive last week, I was very lucky. Like most people I did not have a backup of anything on my laptop. Luckily there was only one file on there that I cared about and recreating it will take only about an hour. However, I've decided I do need a solution for syncing my laptop files.

I don't run a server in my house right now. So I thought I'd give Groove from MS Office 2007 a try. One of the features in Groove is file synchronization between hosts in a shared workspace.

A few things I've found out:
  • The 64-bit version of Groove 2007 does not support file sharing workspaces. You can still sync files, but all of the files are stored in the Groove database instead of just syncing part of the file system.
  • There is no easy way to save a file into a Groove workspace. You must copy a file into the workspace and then open it from the workspace. While you work on the open file a temp copy is placed on the hard drive. When you close the document, the changed version is placed back into the Groove database. I would have preferred browsing to Groove workspaces through Explorer (Although, there's 3rd party addon for the low low price of $60USD per seat).

In the short-term at least, this appears to be a workable solution for me. It will synchronize my basic Word documents and graphics. But the fact my apps can't save directly to a workspace without first opening the file from that workspace is definitely clunky.

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