Tag Archives: sync

Google Chrome Beta: Speedy and Simple to Use

The newest beta release of Google Chrome promises enhanced usability and stability to users. The new features are designed to increase browser speed and responsiveness and makes it easier for you to access everything you need with just one click.

Autofill will help you fill in Web forms with information you specify, including your name, phone number, address and credit card numbers. The feature builds this information up over time. Eventually, you’ll be able to fill in a long Web form with only a couple of clicks – never having to re-type the information over and over again. For your security and safety, all personal information stored in Chrome is stored securely and kept private until you choose to use it on a Web site.

You’ll find more synchronization capabilities in this new version. In addition to syncing bookmarks, preferences and themes, you can now also sync your Chrome extensions and Autofill data (NOT including credit card numbers) through your Google account. With these sync features, you can personalize your Chrome experience and access your well-organized information and settings no matter what computer you may be using. As long as you sign in to your Google account on Chrome, you’ll be able to access everything you might need. Just head to the “Sync” section of the “Personal Stuff” tab in Chrome’s options to get started.

Are you a Chrome user or beta tester? What are your thoughts on the speed and overall performance of this newest iteration of the popular browser?

Sync Google Chrome Browser Features

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I told you that I was considering making a browser switch from Safari to Google Chrome / Chromium Nightly. Well, thanks to newer builds, I’m inching ever-closer to making the leap.

Being able to sync extensions is something I’d want to do, so imagine my surprise when I discovered that newer nightly builds of Chromium had the feature enabled. I’m living on the bleeding edge!

So, do you know of any killer extensions I might be able to use in Chromium / Google Chrome?

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Problems Connecting the iPhone 4

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After successfully unboxing my new iPhone 4, it was time to connect and sync it for the first time. I had to choose a name for my device. My iPad was named Pythagoras. Therefore, I wanted to stick with a “P” name. One person in the chat room suggested the name “Placenta.” I’m not calling my iPhone that, but why not call the USB cables the placenta? Great idea! Grab your iPhone placenta, connect it up and lets get this show on the road.

As soon as the device began booting up, I was astounded at how sharp the text was on the loading screen. They aren’t kidding about the difference with the new Retina display. I had to enter my AT&T information and then read and agree to the Apple terms of use. Yeah, yeah, blah blah. Wait… now I had to agree to the AT&T service agreement. They state that “AT&T guarantees that you will drop no less than three calls per day.” Excellent! I love a guarantee.

Next I was greeted by the screen that told me to wait up to three minutes to process my request. Geez. Their marketing team wasn’t on the ball. This is the iPhone 4. It should have taken four minutes, not three.

As I was waiting for this whole shebang to get busy, I decided to go with the name Persephone for my shiny new toy. In Greek mythology, Persephone was the queen of the Underworld. That’s kind of fitting, don’t you agree?

Activation is boring, to tell you the truth. Once it finished activating, I was informed I needed to disconnect and reconnect the phone. However, I was momentarily distracted by the beautiful display. Oooh. Ahhhh. Impressive!

Upon reconnection, I had to agree to the iPhone software license. Geebuz. That’s now three of these I had to go through just to use the daggone thing. I chose to restore from a backup of my 3GS. I have folders set up on there on iOS, and I don’t want to have to redo all of that. That, my friends, wasn’t such a hot idea.

Considering I had over 500 iPhone apps, I was nervous. Right after telling everyone that, a message popped up telling me there was a problem and that I needed to start the process again. I did manage to get ‘er done finally, never fear.

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Manage Your Apple Device on Your Ubuntu Desktop

libimobiledevice has but one goal: to be able to manage your iPhone, iPod or iPad right from within Linux on your desktop. Unlike other projects, it does not depend on using any existing proprietary libraries and does not require jailbreaking. The application will allow you to access your device’s file system, retrieve your information, backup or restore the device, manage your icons and apps and synchronize music and video to the device.

The latest release of libimobiledevice has been tested with the iPhone, iPod Touch and iPad – all versions which run firmware up to 3.2. It appears to work flawlessly, and won’t cause issues by having you jailbreak your device.

The program is open-source (and won’t cost you a dime). If you’re a Linux user who also happens to own an Apple mobile device, I highly urge you to check out libimobiledevice. Let us know how your experience goes.

Apple iPad Unboxing

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Yes, we had quite a few of you tune in for the live delivery and unboxing of Apple’s first iPad product. Was it worth the wait? Only time will tell. There wasn’t much to the box, really – and setup was certainly a breeze. I went on to demonstrate quite a few features after unwrapping my package. *ahem*

The one that I unboxed in this video is the Wi-Fi version, of course, since it’s the only one available right now. I do have the 3G version on order already, so am likely to give THIS one away at some point in the future. Stay tuned for details on that. Even if you don’t think you want an iPad… would you really turn it down if it’s free?

To all of you who claim that the iPad is “nothing more than an iPod Touch with a bigger screen” I say: THAT IS THE POINT. Dang. Seriously, folks…

It is true that you can sync an iPhone and an iPad both to the same computer and install the same apps. However, the problem is that I have 557 apps sitting on my iPhone right now. I’m going to have to go through and de-select the ones I don’t want on my iPad.

Note: If you’re an iPad app developer (or know of one), I’m interested in reviewing your app.

I know that watching me sync the iPad for the first time may not have been an exciting experience for all of you. I also know that the true beauty of the screen didn’t translate too well in the video. However, trust me when I say this is a really nice screen.

I was shocked at how fast thing load on my iPad. I wasn’t as happy trying to type something in with the iPad on Portrait mode. My hands are just too big. I think I’ll have to use Landscape mode all the time. It’s pretty cool to see how smoothly the transformation is when switching between the two modes. You have to hold the device pretty steady, though. It seems to be almost too sensitive, and will change modes if you move the machine just a tad too much in any direction.

Did you get an iPad yesterday? If so, what apps did you get? I’m curious to know, because discovering new things is part of the fun. Let’s hear your first thoughts. Leave us a follow-up comment.

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iPod on the iPad

Using your iPad as a music device will let you see and touch your music in ways you can’t when using your iPod. The large screen makes it so much easier to view your library, and make changes as needed. You can browse through your entire collection by song, artist, album or genre. You’ll be able to see your collection as full-sized album art. You can flip through them just as if they were physical CDs.

Tap a song to play it and the “now playing” screen shows up. It will show you the album art for the track you’re listening to. Tap on the album art to flip it over, and you will see the track list. A simple touch of your finger can pause your song, shuffle through your playlist, change to a new song and adjust the volume.

It’s really easy to add music to your iPad. Tap a button and head over to the iTunes store to find new tracks to purchase. Or… transfer existing iTunes libraries from other devices by sync’ing them together.

I’ve seen a few people make comments as to how the iPad is “nothing more than a glorified iPod”. When it comes time to listen to your music though, isn’t a “glorified iPod” a GOOD thing?

Backup Security and Synchronizing (even for Macs!)

You’ve seen us repeatedly say to back up your files. When someone has computer problems, one of the first questions that we ask is whether there is a backup of the important files. You would be surprised at how many people do not have a backup. And there is no reason for that lapse in security.

Computers will fail. Hard drives will stop working. Disasters will happen, so we are going to make this backup routine very easy. We have an offer for our readers from GoodSync. This program has had good reviews and we agree. It is easy to use and it is effective:

GoodSync will automatically back up and synchronize all your important files so you never need to worry about losing your emails, precious family photos, contacts, MP3s, and financial documents. GoodSync works locally – between desktops, laptops, servers, and external drives, but it is also capable of backing up and syncing files to and from remote servers using FTP, SFTP, WebDAV, and more.

This program will work with Windows XP/2003 Server/Vista and yes, Windows 7.

And yes there’s a Mac Version.

For the sake of full disclosure, we tested the pay-for version extensively. The Mac version was not tested by our reviewers.


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How to Sync Any Device (Audio, Video, Photos) to a Computer

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Like many of you, I have a lot of gadgets. These devices are capable of playback of audio and video, and of viewing images. Most of my media sits somewhere on my home network. Synchronizing that media between computers and devices can be a nightmare. Finally, there is software available for OS X that helps me do this with ease. There’s also a Beta test going on right now for this program to run within Windows!

doubleTwist helps you to better sync the media on your machines to your various devices. There is support available right now for everything from Blackberry products to the G1 and Android phones. This includes the PSP even!

Browse through your media and play anything. doubleTwist supports all major audio and video formats. doubleTwist works with your phone, MP3 player, PSP, camera, and much more! Take your music, videos and other media wherever you go. Publish a video to YouTube, upload photos to Facebook and Flickr or privately share an experience with friends.

The list of supported devices will grow over time. There’s an image pane on the site that helps you look at the devices supported currently. However, it will no longer be a pain to sync your devices and use your media!

As Geeks, we have way more than one device. These devices are great on their own. But getting the media there and synchronizing all devices together is maddening. ARGH!! But doubleTwist makes it easy, and takes the guesswork and headaches out of the equation.

doubleTwist is a basic media manager that is essentially the uber station of media management with your devices.

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How Do You Keep Files and Folders in Sync?

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It’s a routine task to copy or move a file from one location on your computer to another. When it comes to synchronizing files in one folder with another folder can be hard without the right software. When it’s another machine that you’re wanting to move or copy a folder to, you have to have that same software on the other machine. See where I’m going? It can get to be a huge hassle. Thankfully, Synkron can help. Synkron is a multi-platform Qt application designed for synchronizing two or more folders.

Apart from doing synchronizations, it provides many other additional features. The user interface of Synkron is divided into several sections: Synchronize, Multisync, SyncView, Scheduler, Restore, Blacklist and Filters. To switch between these sections, use the toolbar.

  • Synchronize multiple folders.
  • Tabs allow you to have more synchronizations running at once.
  • Periodical synchronizations automatically sync your folders in selected intervals.
  • Restore files, which were overwritten during the synchronization.
  • Add files and folders to black list to make sure they won’t be synchronized in the future.
  • Make schedules and backup using multisync.

It’s amazing how detailed this program is. As I pointed out, it’s fully open-source. With this much power, it’s almost overwhelming. I’ve been looking for a simple way to sync multiple folders and files across my network, on many different operating systems.

How many computers do you have at home, and how often do you back up? What happens if your backup is messed up? Redundancy is a good thing. You should be able to sync your folders and information together with ease, so that you always have access to it. If you’re looking for a good tool to do this, make sure you check out Synkron.


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Syncing Outlook, OS X, Google with Ease

Not sure how it happened, but I ran into The Holy Grail of Synchronization – how to synchronize Microsoft Outlook (multiple locations), Google Calendar, Gmail, iPod, and mobile phone with Funambol, ScheduleWorld. I took the time to dig deeper, largely because I’ve been wanting to sync Outlook with Google (and Google with iCal) for a while now – and I’m still using Outlook 2000, which keeps certain syncing tools out of reach.

Standards to the rescue! Engtech, as described, pointed me to ScheduleWorld: “An experiment in a new kind of rich Internet application, built on the foundations of open standards that enables you to access your data from virtually anywhere using a growing number of interoperable devices and software.” Yes, it’s absolutely free – and absolutely 100x more useful than you may realize:

  • Sync between countless devices, platforms (iPod included!)
  • Simple and fast Calendaring, Scheduling, Tasks, Notes
  • Global address book (LDAP!)
  • Java Micro Edition (JME/J2ME) Client for mobile phones

Whoa. As recommended, I downloaded the Outlook SyncML client (which runs independently). Took a small bit of troubleshooting to get going, but the problems were remote – and cleared up quickly by Mark Swanson (ScheduleWorld mixmaster). In no time at all, I was able to do what I’ve always wanted to do – sync calendars, tasks, and notes through simple software, as well as have a network-accessible address book. Dude, ScheduleWorld is absolutely amazing – and free.