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macman4789
Mar 1, 2010, 04:28 PM
Hi guys,

I've been wanting to find some syncing software for my MBP and iMac. Recently I've read somewhere that you can do this using Mobile Me? How does this work?

Is it just using iDisk as a shared hard drive and if so how does that work with the poor upload and download speeds?

Many thanks



polotska
Mar 1, 2010, 04:58 PM
Hi guys,

I've been wanting to find some syncing software for my MBP and iMac. Recently I've read somewhere that you can do this using Mobile Me? How does this work?

Is it just using iDisk as a shared hard drive and if so how does that work with the poor upload and download speeds?

Many thanks

The sync is limited to Safari bookmarks, iCal calendars, Address Book contacts, Dashboard Widgets, Dock items, Keychains, Apple Mail (accounts, rules, signatures, and Smart Mailboxes), Notes, and System Preferences. It works well for those purposes.

It won't sync files across machines, if that's what you're interested in.

flynz4
Mar 1, 2010, 05:41 PM
T
It won't sync files across machines, if that's what you're interested in.

iDisk syncs files just fine across machines.

/Jim

macman4789
Mar 2, 2010, 04:43 PM
How does that work? When you mean sync you just mean you upload what you need and then you can access iDisk from multiple computers?

The upload speeds are really slow tho aren't they?

polotska
Mar 2, 2010, 05:39 PM
iDisk syncs files just fine across machines.

/Jim

It depends how you're defining "sync," I suppose. You can certainly use an iDisk as a medium to copy files between computers, or as a central repository from which you can read/write a document from multiple computers, but an iDisk by itself does not synchronize documents from the HDD of one computer to another.

below sea level
Mar 2, 2010, 08:19 PM
It depends how you're defining "sync," I suppose. You can certainly use an iDisk as a medium to copy files between computers, or as a central repository from which you can read/write a document from multiple computers, but an iDisk by itself does not synchronize documents from the HDD of one computer to another.

Yes, it does. I regular place files in the local iDisk folder on my MBP and watch them sync to the local iDisk folder on my other two machines.

flynz4
Mar 3, 2010, 12:28 AM
It depends how you're defining "sync," I suppose. You can certainly use an iDisk as a medium to copy files between computers, or as a central repository from which you can read/write a document from multiple computers, but an iDisk by itself does not synchronize documents from the HDD of one computer to another.

Yes... iDisk does sync your documents across multiple machines. I keep most of my document files in my mobile me account. The data lives locally on each and every one of my 4 Macs... and I can pick up any of them and my data is all there. If I change the data on any computer, the changes are sent up to the cloud, and all of the machines are updated automatically.

If I edit a file while I do not have internet connection (ex: on a flight in a plane without internet access)... I can still access and edit my documents. Once I land and I connect to the internet, then the data syncs and all of my machines are updated with the latest edits.

In order to do this, you must go into system preferences > Mobile Me and enable sync.

/Jim

slheinlein
Mar 3, 2010, 05:31 AM
I've tried to configure my sync this same way through system preferences and mobile me. However, it does not automatically upload to cloud, I need to move the files to my iDisk manually and then it will upload.

HOw do you configure to automatically upload all new or changed files within a directory?

below sea level
Mar 3, 2010, 09:47 AM
I've tried to configure my sync this same way through system preferences and mobile me. However, it does not automatically upload to cloud, I need to move the files to my iDisk manually and then it will upload.

HOw do you configure to automatically upload all new or changed files within a directory?

It will only sync files and folders that are inside your local iDisk. You can't just choose a random directory anywhere.

polotska
Mar 3, 2010, 10:07 AM
It will only sync files and folders that are inside your local iDisk. You can't just choose a random directory anywhere.

Right, this is what I was driving at (obviously I didn't make the point very well!). You can't use it to sync particular directories from one machine to another, for instance if you want to sync iPhoto or iTunes libraries from one machine to another.

flynz4
Mar 3, 2010, 11:13 AM
Right, this is what I was driving at (obviously I didn't make the point very well!). You can't use it to sync particular directories from one machine to another, for instance if you want to sync iPhoto or iTunes libraries from one machine to another.

If you keep your iPhoto or iTunes libraries on the iDisk, then they will sync.

In the most general case, you should be careful when syncing such libraries regardless of how you do it... even if you use any other sync programs you can easily end up with problems.

Instead, I just sync my data files such as my documents, spreadsheets, etc that I use on a regular basis.

For music... I always add new music to 27" i7 iMac which is at home... and I consider that machine to be the "master location" for all of my data. Then I will move copies of my music to my laptops and iPods etc.

Likewise for my pictures... I keep the master copy of my pictures on the same iMac, but I use Aperture, which is designed to be able to move projects from machine to machine. This allows me to work on a "project" when on the road, yet easily integrate it back into my main computer when I get back home.

By using technologies such as Mobile Me, Dropbox, Xmarks, 1Password, iMap email, etc... I have a single "main computer" at home, and I have everything that I need on my work MBP, my personal MBA, and within my account on my wife's MBP. This allows me to work on any computer (even my wife's if I do not have mine with me).

Back at home... my iMac is triple backed up without any human intervention. I back up to a 2TB Time Capsule using Time Machine... and I also back up to the cloud using Crashplan+ and Mozy both of which offer unlimted backup capacity very inexpensively. Hence... If I am sitting in my hotel room on the other side of the planet, and I update my personal spreadsheet, it immediately syncs to cloud using MM or Dropbox... then my iMac at home syncs within a few seconds... and then the data get's backed up locally in my house and to the cloud within the hour. It is as close to a perfect solution that is available in my opinion. Things will even get better as more things move natively to the cloud.

/Jim

polotska
Mar 3, 2010, 11:41 AM
If you keep your iPhoto or iTunes libraries on the iDisk, then they will sync.

Sure. What I'm talking about is the ability to synchronize any file or folder on the hard drive of one computer to that of another, without having to copy it to some intermediate location. (iPhoto and iTunes libraries were just an example.) This is not a capability that iDisk or MobileMe has. I'm not ripping the product, simply stating what it does and does not do.

masnick
Mar 3, 2010, 12:16 PM
Dropbox.com

Lets you sync your Mac, your iPhone or iPod Touch, your Windoze (does anyone use those any more?). 2GB cloud storage is free; more will cost ya.

FYI: I heard about this today from 43folders.com and David Allen Company.

flynz4
Mar 3, 2010, 03:41 PM
Sure. What I'm talking about is the ability to synchronize any file or folder on the hard drive of one computer to that of another, without having to copy it to some intermediate location. (iPhoto and iTunes libraries were just an example.) This is not a capability that iDisk or MobileMe has. I'm not ripping the product, simply stating what it does and does not do.
You can move any file or folder to reside inside of your MM folder... just like you can have it reside on your Macintosh HD, or your "username folder", or your documents or any other folder that you have on your computer. You can do the same thing with Dropbox. Once you put your folders into these areas... everything is transparent to you.

If your need is really to sync folders that reside in a different directory... then you are 100% correct in that they will not sync via mobile me or dropbox. Your solutions to that problem will most likely be MUCH more complex... with a higher level of ongoing issues.

/Jim

polotska
Mar 3, 2010, 04:29 PM
Your solutions to that problem will most likely be MUCH more complex... with a higher level of ongoing issues.

/Jim

It is certainly much more complex, but rsync is FAR more powerful and reliable.

Chronosync comes to mind as a popular graphical sync app for OS X. I haven't used it myself, so I can't necessarily recommend it.

polotska
Mar 3, 2010, 04:34 PM
I should add that I'm not necessarily suggesting rsync as a solution to your workflow; but I don't think of what iDisk does as "sync" in the Unix sense, which is why I stated that iDisk doesn't allow for file/folder level sync.

However, iDisk is certainly no replacement for rsync or graphical tools of similar purpose.

dfeigenbaum1
Mar 4, 2010, 10:55 AM
mail does not sync until i open it on my iphone, then it syncs, shouldn't sync work without having to open mail on my iphone???

macman4789
Mar 5, 2010, 07:02 PM
Yes... iDisk does sync your documents across multiple machines. I keep most of my document files in my mobile me account. The data lives locally on each and every one of my 4 Macs... and I can pick up any of them and my data is all there. If I change the data on any computer, the changes are sent up to the cloud, and all of the machines are updated automatically.

If I edit a file while I do not have internet connection (ex: on a flight in a plane without internet access)... I can still access and edit my documents. Once I land and I connect to the internet, then the data syncs and all of my machines are updated with the latest edits.

When you say your data is stored locally, do you mean its stored in the iDisk section which is located under devices where your other drives are in Macintosh HD?

Thanks

Luba
Mar 5, 2010, 08:52 PM
Hi Jim, why is there higher risk of problems sync'ing iPhoto or iTune libraries versus data files such as documents and spreadsheets and keynote presentations?

Thanks,
Luba

If you keep your iPhoto or iTunes libraries on the iDisk, then they will sync.

In the most general case, you should be careful when syncing such libraries regardless of how you do it... even if you use any other sync programs you can easily end up with problems.

Instead, I just sync my data files such as my documents, spreadsheets, etc that I use on a regular basis.


/Jim

flynz4
Mar 6, 2010, 01:16 AM
When you say your data is stored locally, do you mean its stored in the iDisk section which is located under devices where your other drives are in Macintosh HD?

Thanks

The data is actually stored on your Maccintosh HD drive... just the same as your other files. Yes indeed... they do show up in the sidebar as well... but they are stored locally on your hard drive, and from there they are synchronized to the cloud and to your other machines.

/Jim

flynz4
Mar 6, 2010, 01:23 AM
Hi Jim, why is there higher risk of problems sync'ing iPhoto or iTune libraries versus data files such as documents and spreadsheets and keynote presentations?

Thanks,
Luba

Using your iTunes as an example... your "iTunes library" consists of two parts:

1) All of your data files (ex: your individual songs, movies, etc)
2) Your XML database that is an index of the various files

If you were to add a song to your iTunes library... two things would change. First the new file would be added to your music library... and secondly, the XML database would be updated.

When the synchronization occurs, the two changes would be applied serially (ie: they would not be updated at the same moment in time). If the syncronization was to fail, or be discontinued before both were updated (ex: you close the lid of your laptop)... then the syncronized computer has an inconsistent set of data files and xml database.

If you were to launch itunes on a different machine... it could further update the database... and you could lose changes.

The above scenario is just one small but simple example of how problems might occur.

/Jim

dont24
Mar 8, 2010, 10:30 AM
Mobile Me will only work with one user, correct? If I want to use it for myself and my wife, need to order 2 copies?

citi
Mar 8, 2010, 12:34 PM
Mobile Me will only work with one user, correct? If I want to use it for myself and my wife, need to order 2 copies?

If you want your wife to have her own email and calendar syncing then you then you should upgrade to the family license. But, if you are more concerned about file management and key access, all calendars etc., then just get the one. It's like itunes. User account specific.

sirbuildalots
Mar 31, 2010, 01:55 PM
Error Message
I am getting this error message. My contacts won't sync properly.

MobileMe Sync

1. Contacts could not be synced due to inconsistent data.
2. Confirm that your computer's data is valid, then reset Contacts on MobileMe in System Preferences.

OK ?

Not sure what I am supposed to do and why my contacts won't sync properly. Some seem to work and the majority of them don't.

Why?