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Sync Showdown: Windows Live Mesh and MobileMe



I’m taking a quick break from writing a new theatre piece called Southern Crossroads for Wayside Theatre. We’re creating this piece ourselves out of necessity due to difficult economic circumstances, but that’s not the point of the post. I’m been writing pretty much straight through for the last 56 hours or so, and drafts have been flying around our staff like crazy. I’ve also been making sure that things sync between the Lenovo ThinkPad X200 Tablet PC and the iMac, as I usually do most of the printing from the office, (although I can do so remotely if I want, that never quite seems to work out as it should for one reason or the other.)

This might be minor thing but in the last day or so it has been big for me. I usually sync up drafts using both Windows Live Mesh and MobileMe. Call me redundant. But I’ve discovered during this period that while both are reliable methods of syncing documents back and forth, MobileMe is more reliably faster. Again, a minor detail in many instances, but in these last couple of days, that difference in speed has made a huge difference in our workflow.

For what’s it worth.



  1. Jeremy Mazner

    01/21/2009 at 9:19 pm

    are you and the rest of the team running the latest version, the one we released last week (.14)? we had some changes in there to improve reliability of p2p synch, I wonder if they might help…

  2. soydeedo

    01/22/2009 at 1:35 am

    I just recently tried Live Mesh for the first time, and while it was nifty, I wasn’t a big fan of the way it handled cutting and pasting folders etc; it really did seem to take a long time, and the log would read that I had DELETED and ADDED files, which makes me feel like it’s re-uploading the folder’s contents.

    Luckily I stumbled on this post and googled up alternatives. The first hit back was something called dropbox. I read a little about it and signed up. So far I’m really liking this little service since it seems to be very efficient – in fact they tout that as one of their features. Only changed bits are transferred and in the event of a moved folder it syncs up in no time. Also I like the added touch of having a check mark over file names so I don’t have to just sit there looking at the Mesh log waiting for a new entry before I can turn off my computer or what have you.

    Of course development on both projects seems to be continuous so who knows…

  3. soydeedo

    01/22/2009 at 1:37 am

    As an additional note, I even tried to install the Live Mesh plugin on IE so I could drag and drop on the Live Desktop, but it gave me a little warning that drag/drop wasn’t yet supported despite it their little advertisement for it. Who knows.

  4. soydeedo

    01/22/2009 at 1:41 am

    One last note about dropbox, though – you can’t have multiple synced folders without some fiddling around. It’s not a standard feature like it is with Mesh.

  5. Sean Brady

    01/22/2009 at 6:19 am

    I actually switched back from Mesh to FolderShare (Live Sync) due to the speed issues. I will often add something to a folder at work or home, and expect it to be on the other computer when I get home or to work. I have a commute that typically takes 40 minutes. Often with Mesh the file would not be there when I got home. We are talking a single PDF file typically. With Live Sync it is always there. These were on folders that were skipping the sync to the desktop. I am waiting for an enterprising Live Mesh developer to add support for web storage directly in the Mesh. SkyDrive, Google Docs, Flickr, whatever.

  6. GoodThings2Life

    01/22/2009 at 6:59 am

    I’m definitely having better results from Live Mesh’s .14 build on my end with Windows 7, but my Windows Mobile connection is still a bit unstable at times even in good signal zones. I also think the WinMo version could use some work to be more finger friendly, especially on a VGA screen like the Touch Pro.

  7. David

    01/22/2009 at 8:52 am

    I’ve had pretty good luck with Mesh – files are sync’d quickly (within a minute), even large files.

    There’s definitely work to be done on it, but I’m looking forward to the mobile client and using it with all my systems to sync up everything.

  8. craig

    01/22/2009 at 10:57 am

    I run Live Mesh to sync my documents folder from my Vista laptop to my iMac, and run a daily batch file to copy the entire folder to my DropBox, just for an extra layer of security, (mostly in response to what soydeedo mentioned about deleting folders). I’m running the latest version on both OS X and windows and everything works fine.

    Since I’m almost always in OneNote, which saves continuously, LiveMesh is constantly active.

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