There are a number of reasons why you might want to share photos over a few computers. For instance, I like to upload photos to my desktop, as it has a large enough hard drive to hold all of my photos, but I prefer to view them on the superior screen of my laptop.
Syncing files across multiple computers can be very advantageous and it can make it much easier to organize and use all of your photos, regardless of the operating systems of your computers and other factors. Here’s a quick guide to help you get started.
Decide which computer to use as a host. Your host computer will hold the full library of your photos, and while other computers on your network will be able to view and update your photo libraries, they won’t actually be holding the files. If you’re looking for a way to keep multiple copies of your photo library on several computers, you’ll have to find specialized software for that purpose–it’s much easier to use a single computer to hold the library. Choose one with a large hard drive.
Create a folder for your photos. Move all of your photos to that folder, and if you’d like, organize them in any way that you wish. Try to do so in a logical way. When you sync photos to that folder from other computers, you’ll have to keep up with whatever organizational method that you choose.
Download Windows Live Mesh. This is a free utility that you’ll use on your host computer to share your folders. It’s provided by Microsoft, and it’s fairly simple to use. Install it on every computer that will be syncing to your photo library. You only have to install Mesh, not the other programs that come bundled with the install file.
When you install Windows Live Mesh, follow the on screen instructions. You’ll have to select the folders to be shared. Choose your photo directory. Windows Live Mesh will automatically read into the subdirectories, so you won’t have to worry about adding each folder individually.
Install Mesh on other computers. After Windows Live Mesh is installed on the host computer, you’ll simply have to install it on each other computer that you want to use and open the program to access your files through your network. You can update your photo library, and any changes that you make will be instantly seen by any computer hooked up to your photo library.
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