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Live Mesh; it's here now, it's useful and it's free

Live Mesh is real cloud computing available now and free – not vague promises for the future. Office Watch has a primer on using it now.

by Office Watch

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Live Mesh is Microsoft's file sharing 'cloud' technology. The 'technical preview' is currently available to people in some countries for free so you can give it a try - we've been doing just that for several months.

We don't just like Live Mesh, it's become a indispensible part of our daily computing.

This week at Microsoft's Professional Developers Conference we'll hear a lot about 'cloud computing' with initiatives like Azure. Those new products will roll out in the years ahead with grand visions.

Live Mesh isn't a vague vision, it's available now, for free to most people.

In this article we'll give a practical overview of Live Mesh in its current form. Later articles will look at a very practical use of Live Mesh, how you can use it with Microsoft Office documents and the future possibilities it entails.

Keep in mind that Live Mesh is very much in development - new and changed features are appearing with each update from the active development team.

The Live Mesh team seem like an eager and responsive bunch, much like the nice folks who work on Microsoft OneNote. Good ideas are implemented without the bureaucracy and second-guessing that bogs down many parts of Microsoft.

What is it?

In its current form, Live Mesh is a way to share files automatically between computers as well as make them available from any web browser where you can login. All this is done, at present, by synchronizing with 'the cloud', called the Live Desktop.

You can also remotely access a computer that's been linked to your Live Mesh account. This can be done to any internet linked computer that you've authorised ahead of time and works without any problems of firewalls, static IP addresses or any other technical hassles.

At the moment you can add files or folders to your Live Mesh account then choose which other devices can access those files or synchronize them to local storage.

That its current form - however that's just a small part of the possibilities of Live Mesh. More on that later.

Article posted: Monday, 27 October 2008

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