Share Large Photo Archives With Your Relatives Using Windows Live Mesh

Grandpa Need­ham Dier­lam and Bev­erly Dier­lam, 1932

One ques­tion I’m con­stantly fac­ing is, “Now that I have all these pho­tos scanned, what in the world do I do with them?” I have rel­a­tives who say they would love to see them. But it takes far more work to get the pho­tos to them!

Now that they are com­puter files, I can email them out, a few at a time. I can post them on my web site or on Face­book. These days you can cre­ate cof­fee table books, cal­en­dars, etc. All of those things take time, and there­fore, chances are they won’t actu­ally hap­pen. At least, in my case, not soon!

I have found the @Dropbox ser­vice is a great (and free!) mech­a­nism for file shar­ing amongst friends and rel­a­tives. Let me take a moment and explain Drop­box from this stand­point, because we’re going to be doing the same thing with Win­dows Live Mesh. Drop­box, accord­ing to Wikipedia, has over 50 mil­lion users. It’s a mature, reli­able, and securely encrypted service.

The orig­i­nal idea with Drop­box is that you use it for your­self. You install Drop­box on each of your com­put­ers (includ­ing your phone), and every­thing in your Drop­box fold­ers is always avail­able to you, on every com­puter. You can also use a web browser and obtain your files through their web site. It’s quite handy!

The free ver­sion of Drop­box has lim­its, some­where between 4 GB and 21 GB of file space. That is an awful lot of space for day-to-day usage. On the other hand, when you begin mak­ing thou­sands of high-resolution scans of pho­tos and old hand-written doc­u­ments, you run out of Drop­box space in a hurry!

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