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Saturday, January 15, 2011

Automatically backup to Skydrive



This tutorial is going to show you how to backup to Windows Live SkyDrive, but this time, for free and it actually works, but still with some of the limitations (The 50MB limit, and a 9 subfolder limit). 




Here’s what you need:



GoodSync(Or any other backup utility that works with Mapped Drives)




SkyDrive


Here's How:
Go to http://skydrive.live.com, and sign in.



Click the “Create Folder” link on the top left.



Type in “Backup,” or whatever you want your backup folder to be called, and make sure that your privacy setting is set to “Just Me.” Click “Next,” and then on the next page, click “Cancel.” You won’t be doing anything else on SkyDrive for now.




Linking ID’s

Before you do anything else, you need to link Windows 7 with your Windows Live ID. To do this, go to the start menu, and click your account picture.



Click “Link Online IDs” in the sidebar, and then click “Add Online Provider.”


This should open up your default browser to the Online IDs page at Microsoft. Click you Operating System bits(32 or 64) download button, then click “Save”, and then after downloading, either click it, or push “Run.” If you need help telling which bit-version you have, click “Am I running a 32-bit or 64-bit version of Windows?” link.


Follow the Installation process, and then click finish.


Go back to the User Accounts window, if you’re not already returned there. You should see a Windows Live section in the list now. Click “Link Online ID,” and then enter your Windows Live ID information. Click “Sign In.” You’re done with that section. Now, we’re off to Office.


Office

If you don’t have Microsoft Office 2010, you can get the beta version for free here.

Open up any Office application(You can use any application to do this, but for this example, I’m going to use Word.)

Click ‘File,” then click “Save and Send”(or “Share” if you have the beta version). Click “Save to Web”(or Save to SkyDrive in the beta version).


Click the “Sign In” button, and if you need to, enter your Windows Live information.


Office should think for a little bit, then it should show you all of your SkyDrive folders. Scroll down and click the “Save As” button. A window should pop up.


In the window, select the address bar, and then copy the address by clicking it, selecting all of it, right-clicking it, and clicking “Copy”. Then click cancel. You just needed the address.


Windows Explorer

Now you need to go to “Computer”. You can do this by clicking on the Start button, and clicking “Computer”. In the window that opens, click “Map Network Drive”.


A window should open up. Right-click the textbox, and click “Paste.” Change “\whatever” (In the first picture, “\whatever” is \Pictures) to “\Backup”, or whatever you named the folder back in step 1. If you want, you can change the drive letter, but you don’t have to. Click “Finish”.



It should start thinking. It may ask you for your Windows Live ID information. Give it to them.


It might take a little while, but it should open up a new window. That’s your SkyDrive Backup folder.


GoodSync

Now it’s time for the good stuff. Download GoodSync at www.goodsync.com/download. Click the download button, and then click “Save.” After it’s done downloading, either click it, or click “Run.” Follow the installation steps, and then click “Finish.”


Start up GoodSync. If it’s your first time running it(and we assume it is), it will ask you to name your new backup. Name it something like “SkyDrive Backup,” and then click the “Backup” option. Click “Create”. (If you’re new to GoodSync, you might need to click the “Tutorial” link.)


A new window should pop up, and a balloon should be pointing to a “Browse” button. This is your source folder; the folder you will be backing up. Click “Browse”.


A new window should open. Just browse to the folder you want, click on it, then click OK. In this example, I’m going to back up my “Pictures” folder.


Now a balloon should be pointing to another “Browse” button. This is your destination; the folder where you “Source” will go. So, in this example, “Pictures” is going to my SkyDrive backup drive. Click “Browse.”


Click “My Computer,” and then click your SkyDrive backup drive. It should be under your physical drives, or your other mapped drives. Note: If you don’t want the contents of the “Pictures” folder(or whatever you picked) going into the backup drive, but instead want it going into a sub-directory, click your SkyDrive folder, and then click “Make New Folder,” and name it the name of the folder you wanted to back up. Click “Ok.”


It should now start analyzing your source and destination. It’s now time to set up the automatic backup. Click the “Auto” button.


Now, in the picture below, I’m showing you the settings I use. I want it to sync on GoodSync Start, when the folders connect, and periodically. For periodically, I made it Mac style: It backs up every hour. But you can make it anything you want. if you don’t know what you’re doing, just use the settings I listed below(if you don’t have the fastest internet speed or the computer resources, I would recommend setting the time to over 2 hours). Click “Ok.”


Next, to make the backup more automatic and less noticeable, go to the “Tools” menu, and then click “Program Options.” For these settings, you can also use the settings I’m using. Check “Show GoodSync in the system tray,” “Hide to system try when Main Window is closed,” and “Start GoodSync when Windows starts.” There you go.


You should be ready to automatically backup to Windows Live SkyDrive! Enjoy!

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