Data storage and syncing data - tips needed


Hi all

I have 3 devices which I regularly work from... a PC at uni and two laptops (one at home, one on the go - I know - kind of defeats the object of having a laptop). I currently store my data on several external harddrives/memory sticks. But this has limitations - for example, when you run a search it does not search for the files that are on an external drive (or if it does, it does so very slowly).
Does anyone have any tips on how to be able to access the same data on multiple devices quickly and efficiently? I've thought of using online storage such as Dropbox, but I don't think it is as accessible in terms of searching through folders etc in the same way you would if you were accessing files directly from your PC documents? Does anyone sync data across their multiple devices? Any advice appreciated.


Depends which data you need to access regularly. For papers, I am very happy with Mendeley. I have my papers sorted into thematic folders - works most of the time.

For media content I prefer Evernote. There I use also notebooks to group things together and use tags for further identification.

For data (Excel, etc) I use a dropbox account and make sure that they are again sorted (mainly method, then date and a name that helps me identifying the experiment). These data get also a short entry into Evernote (mainly folder/data name and date) - so its searchable and I can put it in context with other things I have found.

I have to keep a labbook anyway - so Evernote serves as my own electronic version of a personal labbook.

From time to time I have to reorganize stuff (mainly when I get new ideas and don't bother to categorize them the minute I generate them) - but normally I find my things again ;-)


Google drive is very good at searching through all folders simultaneously.

To be honest though, my data is organised in folders so I tend to know where to go to find it.


The search part is very important to me. I know exactly where to go but like to save time clicking through folders. I'm now testing out Google Drive! Cheers both.


Dropbox or google drive are/can be local areas on your device so it searches those like any other folder on your pc. I actually use both! Why... I like dropbox's integration with a lot of apps plus I can selectively choose which directories to share on different devices i.e. I have dropbox on my work MacBook but only have a couple of directories on it.

What I really like on google drive is the photos part, any photo under 15mb is backed up for free i.e. it doesn't use your space allowance. So I have 15gb of pictures stored free of charge!

Why don't I just use google drive? mmm not 100% sure they will not index everything I have on there.


If you have external hard drives you can use Microsoft synctoy. I used it to to update my files between my PC at uni, my laptop and my PC at home. I made sure I have a folder (which i called COMMON) with all the files that I'm working on that constantly need updating in all three places: uni PC, laptop and home PC. So if I work on different files at uni at the end of the day I use the hard drive to update it using synctoy and when I get home I update both COMMON folders in laptop and PC using the hard drive. This was really useful for me as synctoy searches through that particular folder that I want updated and updates it only. It also searches and renames files/folders within the primary folder that I have renamed or deleted.
I used Dropbox mainly when I need to access software on my uni PC while working at home. In that case I'll use team view to do my work remotely but save it in Dropbox so I can access it straight away. But I'll then save the same file in my common folder so I can update the rest.


Hey again, I've been using Google Drive for a few days and finding it pretty cool for what I want it for... except my PC doesn't seem to search the Google Drive folder for files... even though I've made sure it is indexed etc, which is a complete bummer!
Is anyone using Google Drive and able to successfully search for files on it through the search bar in the start menu or through Windows Explorer???


Search is now working... I had to restart my computer : )