Although Microsoft Sharepoint is different from My Docs Online in scope and application (it’s usually used in company intranets) it often comes up in customer conversations. Or more often in conversations with people who call/chat/email to ask about Sharepoint because we often come up in searches related to Microsoft products and technologies like Sharepoint, which like My Docs Online includes Web Folders support.
A new user recently emailed us to point out that My Docs Online, using WebDAV and the Desktop App, is working nicely as an alternative to MobileMe and iDisk, which will no longer be available after June.
Here’s what he said to us:
I just signed up for your service after evaluating many others over the last few days. Your interface seems closest to what I had with the iDisk under Apple’s Mobile Me. I upgraded to Lion and also had to find something before June 30 when the iDisk goes away.
– Bud Cothern
Apple’s iCloud is very different from iDisk. iDisk is (soon to be was) a remote server that is organized like a typical drive, with a folder tree, and accessible via standard, open methods like WebDAV. iCloud is closed, and accessible only via apps using the interface provided by the operating system. It’s another outgrowth of iOS, where the location of files is generally hidden, and files are accessible from the apps that handle them. Mountain Lion for the Mac will work much the same when it is released later this year.
That means there’s no way to use the iCloud storage outside the services and apps that make use of it, such as iPhoto, iTunes Match, iWork, and AppStore apps that makes use of the iCloud Storage APIs.
We are currently developing a new application that will replace and extend the features currently available with a combination of Web Folder / WebDAV and Microsoft Office. The new application will be able to “lock, download and edit” virtually any type of application file, including Office files, Quickbook files, and more.
The application will work for both PCs and Macs, and will not need Web Folders / WebDAV.
If you are interested in participating in the beta test of this upcoming application drop us a line at Beta At MyDocsOnline Dot Com to get on the list to be notified when it is available.
Setting up Webfolders on Windows 7 is a breeze when compared to Windows Vista. The attached video shows how to set things up in about 2 and 1/2 minutes. If you prefer written instructions those are available here.
If you run into anything unusual when setting up Webfolders please leave a comment for us.
If you’re reading this you probably know that for some unknown reason Web Folders has never worked in 64 bit Vista. Well, whatever the problem is with Vista it appears to have been fixed in Windows 7. In our testing all of the Web Folders functionality works essentially the way it did in Windows XP, Microsoft even added back (drum roll please…….) the ability to double click an icon to open a folder. Now if they could just fix it in Vista…..
There are some minor annoyances, but those may be cleaned up in the final release. Overall the Web Folders implementation in Windows 7 is a HUGE improvement over Vista.
If you need instructions on setting up a Web Folder in Windows 7 we have them at the MY Docs Online FAQ here.
We’ve been getting a lot of non-customer type support calls and emails from people with Web Folders questions. Since we’re naturally curious we did a bit of research on the source of these calls and found that Microsoft is actually referring Web Folder WebDAV questions to us through certain pages on their support website.
This page for example is a Microsoft Office Live support page titled “Use your own design software to create your Web site”. If you go to the page and scroll about half way down you’ll see a special message to Mac users:
“If you use the Mac OS X operating system, you can also create a Web folder as a network connection. The location associated with this connection is your domain (for example, http://contoso.web.officelive.com). For more information about how to create a network connection, see Web Folders/WebDAV Support.”
Just in case you didn’t click on the link, it takes you directly to the My Docs Online Web Folders / WebDAV page. Wow – So basically if you’re trying to use a Mac the help they have for you is to go to My Docs Online.
Well, we’re glad they’re referring people to our site and hope those people find the instructions for setting up and using Web Folders and WebDAV useful. Thanks to Microsoft for this vote of confidence.