Description : File syncing application which just works, and nicely too! Up to 5GB FREE online storage and sync, with both a web based and desktop based GUI, both equally as easy to use, this application far serpasses all others of its type.
A brilliant intuitive GUI, matched with functionality and simplicity that users want, makes this app, a shining example of how all software should be developed. I was given a link to this app completely by chance a few weeks ago by a friend. We were talking about dropbox and windows live mesh (Two syncing applications I had been using up till now), and the windows one, was eating a TON of cpu. He said find an alterative. I hadn’t looked in ages, being a dropbox user. I thought dropbox was good. My WORD was I in for a surprise!
When I install a new application, the first thing I usually do, is go to the settings window, see what I can mess with. The GUI in Syncplicity is, refreshingly different. No toolbar menu drop down nonsense. One sidebar, with seemingly limited options. However I was rather surprised with the way the menu system worked and how the system tray icon menu is crafted.
The system tray icon allows for a quick view of what Syncplicity is up to. Mouse over will simply show the percentage of completed synchronisation. left click will bright up the mini status window, which uses a coloured tick system to show the stage the application is at. If its totally synced, the tick is green, and the progress bar is 100% filled, with a percentage in writing just incase you want to know. There is also a quick pause and resume button, allowing you to quickly pause and resume syncing. This is very useful when you want to download the latest episode of something from TV. While syncing, there is a section underneath this, showing the current file being synced. Finally, There are two text buttons in hyperlink style, which will load either the full stats or the manage sharing folders window. A nice, useful touch.
The detailed status shows you much the same as the mini status, however it also shows you the progress of the current file being synced. It displays the speed at which the file is uploading, the remaining time, and the remaining amount of MB or KB to be uploaded. The speed information and remaining total file size is something I find useful to know, and is another example of how these developers have clearly listened to their users. And all that is just the status screen!
Managing the folders couldn’t be easier, and sharing them is also rather easy! The manage and share folders window When setting up Syncplicity, you can either choose the default settings, to sync and or backup your my documents, desktop, favourites, music and pictures. Originally, I didn’t have enough space to sync my documents, which is over 2GB (more on how to increase your limit later). So I customised it to my work folder which I had been using Windows Live Mesh to do previously. Just to note, Windows Live Mesh sucks, really bad. It was ok, it synced fine, but then it started using loads of CPU for no apparent reason. It was a known issue, but no worries anymore. Syncplicity works better, and smoother, and with a nicer GUI than WLM.
The standard folders are listed, but any can be added. These are then displayed in a tree like style, with check box’s next to each folder. Upon clicking on a folder, you can change its location on the current computer. This makes for easy manipulation as to where your synced folders are stored, which was one of the biggest features lacking in Dropbox. You can easily change the label of the folder, remove it, exclude it from syncing, make it a backup only, or share it with someone else. Adding folders are so simple, I don’t even have to explain.
Hold up. How secure are we talking? Well with 128 bit SSL, and 256 bit AES encryption, your data is as secure as bank details times military grade encryption. Needless to say, I trust them. Oh, and here is a really nice feature I think you will like, even if your only using it for backup purposes (you don’t HAVE to sync it with another machine). File versions are saved on the web interface, so next time you save over your documents, you’ll be glad you had that folder checked. You can then easily revert or download previous versions of any file. Super!
Configuration of Syncplicity consists of a single slider and 2 check box’s. It’s called Syncplicity for a reason! The slider deals with the bandwidth, from faster internet to faster syncing, determines which you want faster. The first check box is will change if you want the synchronisation icon to display in windows explorer. Personally I have this checked. Second check box, turns the balloon notification either on or off. Its up to you.
That’s about all to say about the desktop application, now for the web interface. Actually it’s one you already know how to use, a folder tree file browser, much like windows explorer. Images will show thumbnails as the file icon. Furthermore, you can edit your pictures online using picnik, an image editing website. Neat! As if that isn’t enough, you can link in your Google Docs account and your facebook account. This means you can edit documents using Google Docs and your own office, whatever your choice is. If you don’t use Google Docs, no problem, you can link in with Zoho Docs, however that is a paid service in itself. Files can also be previewed using the Scribe iPaper service, for documents including PDF’s!
That just about wraps it up for Syncplicity. I feel they have really stuck to the name, making it one of (if not THE) nicest applications I’ve used in a long time. It seems to do everything I could ask for from a syncing application, and yet somehow more. This is something I find very rarely, and so I wondered what their secret was. I had a quick root around in the forum, and saw how much the developers listened to what the people using the software said. Not to say that other developers don’t do this, but with Syncplicity, this is especially evident.
If the 2GB account doesn’t cut it, you can get an extra 3GB for free, just by referring 3 friends, (1GB per free sign up). You can also sign up for 50GB or 100GB, paying monthly at $10 and $20 respectively. Paying yearly will make this even cheaper at $99 and $198 again respectively. If I ever end up needing a paid syncing service, I know where I will go!
Conclusion : Syncing has never been so simple and easy to use and customise! With Syncplicity providing a robust and secure service, the future of syncing is safe. Syncing and Simplicity really have come together in the form of Syncplicity, as the name implies. Simply put, Syncplicity is really awesome! I love it, and if you plan to sync computers, so should you! Even if you have one machine, its time to get a free backup solution for your My Documents! ( Only if under 5GB mind you). Thanks Syncplicity! So when will you be making your own OS?