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Windows 7: Skydrive vs Google Docs vs FTP vs VPN for small office?


01 Nov 2011   #1

Windows XP Pro SP3, Windows 7 Pro 32-bit, Windows 7 Ultimate 64bit, Windows XP Home SP3
 
 
Skydrive vs Google Docs vs FTP vs VPN for small office?

I've been trying to sort out modern options for a Legal Practice and find it a more interesting challenge than I thought.

We have lawyers who travel a little bit. Not a lot. Up to now, the files on the small fileserver in the office might be copied over to their laptop for airplane work, but then you have the issue of continuity and integrity: did anyone manipulate the client file while away? How many of these copy/work/save/returns is really tolerable for a weekender or three day trip?

So its better to remote-access the files, but which way is the simplest/cleanest

I could setup FTP at the file server, set up the client side on the laptops for travel. Right? Is Filezilla the ticket for this?
What about a simple VPN? The server is running [i think] Win home server [ick] but it shouldn't matter a lot - windows can do VPN from XP through Win 7, right? issues?

But then for those with Windows Live or Hotmail accounts, why not Skydrive? My experimenting [limited] is mixed. Its a bit draggy, and not because of connection speed. Is there a way to map Skydrive as a network drive of the users' client laptops? Same with Google Docs, and I'm sure there are other variants of these out there. If any of these can be simply mapped-in, so that I could open my application on the notebook while traveling, select file>netwkdrive>filename, and 'voila''! it would be up and running?

Advice??

My System SpecsSystem Spec
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01 Nov 2011   #2

Win 8 Release candidate 8400
 
 

I would have them use a remote desktop application like Team viewer instead of FTP'ing.

That way it assures only one copy (locally and under security) that everyone can work on.

Its easier, faster, and more idiot proof.

Either way (skydrive or other) you would have to have the file uploaded which is time consuming and there are finite limits in size with most.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
01 Nov 2011   #3

Windows 7 Ultimate x64
 
 

I would also recommend Remote Desktop aswell. Then all the files are stored on the Server and people cant 'forget' to upload.

Just bare in mind that if it is a legal firm then they will want good security.

If you are considering a VPN then I would set it up on the router and not the Server. Doing it this way means all the routing is done by the router and there will be less strain on the Server.

have you considered hosted exchange for emails? Its quite cheap now and would be well backed up. Plus it comes with all the lovely features of Exchange like calendar sharing etc.


Dave
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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01 Nov 2011   #4

Windows XP Pro SP3, Windows 7 Pro 32-bit, Windows 7 Ultimate 64bit, Windows XP Home SP3
 
 

no offense,but I have used Teamviewer and find it very hands-on, busy, and certainly not anything like mapping a local drive. One must have everything set on both ends, and that process must be repeated for every instance of file fetching. [or anything else]

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by zigzag3143 View Post
I would have them use a remote desktop application like Team viewer instead of FTP'ing.

That way it assures only one copy (locally and under security) that everyone can work on.

Its easier, faster, and more idiot proof.

Either way (skydrive or other) you would have to have the file uploaded which is time consuming and there are finite limits in size with most.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
01 Nov 2011   #5

Windows XP Pro SP3, Windows 7 Pro 32-bit, Windows 7 Ultimate 64bit, Windows XP Home SP3
 
 

future searchers may want to refer to this excellent post and the ones linked thereto:
How-To Map Skydrive Using A URL Address
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 Skydrive vs Google Docs vs FTP vs VPN for small office?




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