Windows Live Mesh

While Windows Live Mesh does offer some neat features (and 5 GB for free), we’re a bit hard-pressed to recommend it given the software requirements and uninstall hassles.  We find Live Mesh to be just a bit too ‘integrated’, and much prefer standalone apps like DropBox or SugarSync for online syncing of data.

But if you are interested in trying it out, here are a list of some features (from Microsoft’s website):

Sync folders between computers: With Windows Live Mesh and the Devices website, you can finally stop emailing files to yourself, carrying them around on a USB drive, or worrying whether the version you have with you is the latest.

Sync your program settings: If you have two or more computers running Windows 7 or Windows Vista, you can use Windows Live Meshto sync program settings between them. You can sync your favorites in Internet Explorer, and if you haveMicrosoft Office installed, you can sync your styles, templates, custom dictionary, and email signatures. When you sync your program settings between two computers, they will stay the same on both. Any changes you make on one computer will be made on the other.

Sync folders on SkyDrive: You can select folders to sync on your Windows Live SkyDrive synced storage so that you can access and update them from anywhere. This is a great way to sync folders between computers that aren’t usually online at the same time. It’s also a great way to use Windows Live Mesh if you have only one computer.

Connect to a computer remotely: With the remote connections feature in Windows Live Mesh, you can work on your computer from a computer in another location. For example, you can connect from your work computer to your home computer and access all of your programs and files as if you were in front of your computer at home. Before you can connect to a computer remotely, you need to allow remote connections to it inWindows Live Mesh. All remote connections are encrypted using Secure Sockets Layer (SSL).

Your files on your phone: Ring-a-ling, it’s your files. You probably take your phone with you wherever you go. If so, your SkyDrivefiles are with you, too.  All you need is your phone’s web browser and access to the Internet. You can review a business document at lunch or share photos with your friends.

Another thing we don’t like about Live Mesh is the somewhat ‘heavy’ list of requirements:

Windows Live Essentials 2011 requires the following: 

  • Operating system: 32- or 64-bit version of Windows 7, or Windows Vista with Service Pack 2 and the Platform Update for Windows Vista, or Windows Server 2008 R2, or Windows Server 2008 with Service Pack 2 and the Platform Update for Windows Server 2008.
  • Processor: 1.6 GHz or higher
  • Memory: 1 GB of RAM or higher
  • Resolution: 1024 × 576 minimum
  • Internet connection: Online services require dial-up or high-speed Internet access (provided separately—local or long-distance charges may apply). High-speed Internet access is recommended for some features.
  • Graphics card: Windows Live Movie Maker requires a graphics card that supports DirectX 9 or higher and Shader Model 2 or higher.

Also, some Windows Live programs have additional requirements.

  • Windows Live Photo Gallery and Movie Maker require some components of DirectX 9, which might be installed for you if they’re not found on your computer.
  • Windows Live Mesh requires OS X 10.5 or newer to run on a Mac.
  • Windows Live Messenger video chat requires a webcam, a microphone, speakers or a headset, and high-speed Internet access. HD video chat requires a compatible HD webcam and a 2.0 GHz or higher processor. HD webcams may also have additional system requirements.

Another ‘feature’ we don’t like is that in order to install or uninstall Windows Live software, you must be logged on to the computer using an administrator account.

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