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How to Use Google Drive in Windows
Google Drive is a free Google office suite for online and offline file processing, storage and synchronization. It allows you to create, edit and even collaborate in file processing of Google Docs, Sheets, Slides Forms and Drawing. The Google Drive project was launched way back in April 2012 making it possible for users to create and edit files without the limitations of traditional applications like Microsoft Office.
Drive services were initially possible when you were logged into your Gmail client account, but Google later made it possible for users to create and edit files in the offline mode, on condition that Google folder was installed in your computer.
When you have installed and set up Google Drive services, you receive 15GB free cloud storage and additional 100GB file storage can be purchased at a cost of $1.99 a month.
There are a number of reasons why you may want to set up Google's online service and file storage:
- Google allows you to back up data away from your home computer and into Google Drive Cloud.
- Google makes it possible for you to access online data from anywhere, anytime and on any device.
- Google enables you share office files right inside Drive.
- Google allows you to edit your work online and offline.
- Google allows you integrate countless features to its editing tools by use of add-ons.
How to Install, Setup and Use Google Drive
If ever you decide to join the cloud file services you will have a variety of options to pick from.
Whereas a person with an active Hotmail account will find it appropriate to stick with One Drive from Microsoft, an Apple user will find it appropriate to stay with iCloud. Other rather choosy users will possibly prefer DropBox, Box etc.
If however, you are an avid googler, you own a Gmail account and prefer the ease of use that comes with Google Docs and Sheets, then Google Drive is for you. I believe a lot of users fall into this category.
In order to synchronize all your work efficiently, you will have to install a Google Drive client in your computer. Through the client, you will be able to use files uploaded to Drive on and offline
Setting up Google Drive in your computer is as easy as pie. Usually, you will be prompted to install Drive in your computer the first time you log into your new Gmail account. If however your Gmail account is much older, you can read along to install Google Drive.
- First you need to be logged into your Gmail account.
- From within your account click the Google Apps shortcut, the first item in the bookmarks bar and then click Google Drive. (see image 1)
- Or simply install Chrome App Launcher to your Windows' Task-bar, and then click Google Drive. (see image 2)
- Alternatively, click on the apps shortcut at the top right of the browser, and then select Google Drive. (see image 3)
- You will be re-directed to a new page as shown below.
- When you select No Thanks you will skip Drive installation but will be redirected to online Drive page. Even in this mode you will still have the choice to install Drive at a later date. (see image below)
- When you select Download Drive you will initiate download and installation of Google Drive into your computer.
- Whichever way you decide to install Drive, the end will justify the means.
- When you click on Install Drive for PC, a googlesync.exe installer file will initiate and take you through the download and installation process.
- After installation, you will have a Drive folder right on top of your desktop and a Drive icon in the Notification Area.
- For Windows 8 users, a tile will also be created in the Metro Interface.
- Google Drive will launch prompting you to log into your Gmail account.
- After you have logged into your account, Google will prompt you to sync and customize Google Drive in the Preferences page. You have Advanced, Account and Sync options to configure.
- You can decide which folders to sync or not sync in your desktop and whether Drive can start every time your computer starts.
Google Sync and Data Use:
NOTE: Sync your folders with the knowledge that huge data spikes will result if you decide to sync large files. Sync what you feel is necessary and disregard useless files.
- You will now be able to access your folders in your mobile devices and on your desktop.
Google Drive Folder on the Desktop:
- Your Google Drive folder on the desktop will show all your folders and files that have been synced across all your devices, and it is in here that you will create and name your sub folders appropriately.
- You will notice the tick and double arrows:
- Folders and files with ticks are already synced,
- The double arrows indicate syncing in progress or folders and files that are not yet synced.
Google Docs Extension:
Google Drive in Offline Mode:
- You can also use Google Docs in offline mode.
- Read here for more details.
What is your favorite cloud storage service?
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