Live Mesh

Just recently I found out about a neat little piece of software from Microsoft called Live Mesh, (www.mesh.com ). The best way to describe Live Mesh would be to compare it with free online server. With Mesh you can link up your desktop, laptop, and Blackberry all from one location. Of course you have to download and install the software on each device but, since it's free what do you have to lose. Right now it's still in the beta version so some things may not be in effect just yet but they're working on it.

With Live Mesh you first have to have a Windows' Live ID. After logging in you get a virtual desktop or "Live Desktop" as they like to call it, to download the software from. It's really easy to install the software and they explain how to add each device. One thing I really liked about this is that you can remote op into any of your devices as long as the software is installed on it and it's turned on. If you're familiar with remote oping then you know exactly what I'm talking about. If not, what this allows you to do is take control of the PC. You see the entire desktop except anything that's associated with the person's profile. What I mean by that is you see all the desktop icons but not their desktop wallpaper. To give you an example of this yesterday while showing my friend/busines partner it we remote oped into my desktop from the laptop. Now when we did this I was nowhere near my desktop so distance is not a factor but, you do need an internet connection on both ends. Since I needed some software from our MSDN account and he had the passwords we started the internet explorer. It ran great; it was like I was right there at the desktop downloading the software. Now one thing I do have to tell you is that if you have dual monitor system it's going to look a little funny. It looks squished because it has to make room for both monitors and it can be hard to read. Other than that it's really great idea.

I'm still playing around with it but one thing I like it for is the file sharing. When you create a file on Live Mesh it puts a copy of the folder/folders on your desktop too. These files have a blue color so you can distinguish them from your other folders. I made one folder for my blog drafts, this way it doesn't matter which computer I'm on I pick up where I left off without having to store it on a flash drive and carry it to the next computer. Not only can you put data in your folders you can also put programs in it too. The only thing that limits you and your files is the fact you only get 5 gigs of space but, realize this is not for setting it up as a complete system back up. This is also good for sharing files when you're always on the go. Since it's a drag and drop everything instant and you don't have to wait on emailing and in the business world time is money. In fact I showed it to a friend of mine today, his wife does a lot of traveling and this would allow them to share pics and important information instantly without having to wait on emails.

One question you might be asking is how safe is this? According to Microsoft they say "All file transfers are protected using Secure Socket Layers (SSL), the same technology your online bank uses." Does this mean it's 100% safe, like anything else out there not really? You do need to use some common sense and be careful what you put in your folders and who you share those folders with. With all that said do I still recommend using it, yes? After talking with my partner we both agree that what's most likely to occur when this comes out of beta testing; is that you will still get 5 gigs free and if you want more space you'll have to pay for it. If you like what I have said please check it out and tell others. It's people like us that help make the software out there better.