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Cloud Storage: Is It Complicated?

Saturday, July 12th, 2014 by | Filed Under: Cloud Storage

Melanie from Ottawa, Ontario writes:

My son’s company accountant set us all up on a shared Dropbox for depositing his business accounts, and I’m very impressed.  But I’d also like to store my own personal files somewhere off my shaky old computer, but not if I have to pay for it.

Question #1:  The shared company account is already on my computer and I don’t want to delete it.  Can I open a second Dropbox account of my own, and if so, how do I do it without messing up my son’s accountant? 

Question #2: If the answer to the above is no, and since I have a Hotmail account anyway, can I open a OneDrive account and not worry about it clashing with the Dropbox link?  This is getting complicated.

 Actually, Melanie – it’s not complicated at all for you.  Since you already have a Hotmail address, you have 15 GBs of free storage waiting for you. Head to and log in with your Hotmail username and password. In the upper left of your Inbox, click the drop-down arrow to the right of

Then select OneDrive from your options. You’ll also notice that you have access to free Office Online apps as well.

Your OneDrive will open. Here’s a shot of mine, which has quite a few files uploaded.

To the left, you’ll see a menu to view files, recent documents, photos and files you’ve shared with others. Plus a list of PCs that are synced with your account.

To open a file, just click on it. Right-click and you’ll have options to download to your PC, Share, Embed, Rename, Delete plus Move or Copy.

 If you have a Windows 8 computer, OneDrive is already installed on your computer as an option to save or open files.

If you have a Windows Vista, Windows 7 or Max OS X computer, you can download the app for free from Microsoft by clicking here.  You can then access your cloud storage from that computer or from any other computer by opening a browser and logging on to your account. You can also access Skydrive from a smartphone or a tablet.

Your OneDrive should not conflict with your son’s Dropbox. However, at this time you can only install one Dropbox account per computer. The exception is that if your son’s account is a Dropbox for business account, you could install a personal account as well or, if you and your son have separate user accounts on the computer, a personal Dropbox account could be connected to each user account, but you’d need to log on and off that user account to access the Dropbox accounts.

I think you’ll really enjoy your OneDrive account. I was skeptical at first, but I am a cloud storage convert. You can also set your cloud account to back up a copy to your hard drive as well. Learn how that works here.

~ Cynthia


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One Response to “Cloud Storage: Is It Complicated?”

  1. Melanie (yes the same one as above) says:

    I took your advice and copied some of my more important and more volatile files to the OneDrive. I’m disappointed. I found that it did NOT keep the documents in sync, that when I renamed or deleted a given file or folder, OneDrive did not keep up. What’s the point of storing them if they’re not in sync? Moreover, while it was trying, my computer slowed down a LOT. I’ve now removed my files and returned to my external hard drive for daily backups. Guess you win a few and lose a few.

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