How to Sync Files Between Computers the FAST, FREE, & EASY Way

The world of copy & paste is so 2000. Ok, maybe not completely but there is a better solution. In this video I’ll show you how to sync files between computers and across multiple devices without spending a boatload (or any) of money to do it.

Google Drive is, by far, one of the fastest, easiest, and free-est? ways to make sure every file, pdf, image, photo, and document you need for your business is accessible to you.

While the video above is the easiest way to see how simple it is to setup up Google Drive, below are a few more details, specifically the links you need to get started.

Remember, you need to already have files in your Google Drive to actually sync them across multiple devices.

If you are not using Google Drive yet, it may be completely empty. That’s ok. After you complete the steps below, you’ll have a new folder on your computer called Google Drive. Simply copy and paste or drag and drop anything into the folder to sync files between computers and your other devices.

1. Get a Google Account

Ok, before you can use Google Drive you need to have a Google account. You’ll be asked to login when you initially setup Google Drive.

Are you using Gmail, Google Maps (app on your phone), or YouTube? You should be able to login with that account.

Create a Google account

2. Download Google Drive (computer)

Download Google Drive to your computer. You will need to download it on every computer you want to sync files between.

3. Install Google Drive

When you open and install Google Drive you’ll eventually be asked to login to your Google account. Once logged in you will be asked how you want to sync your computer files with Google Drive. You may see a window like this;

google-drive-sync-all-files-window

Sync all files in your Google Drive to your computer. Make sure you have enough space as it will download everything on your Google Drive to your computer’s hard drive. You can always change this option later in your preferences or settings.

Alternatively you can choose to only sync specific computer files in your Google Drive. You can always change this later in your preferences or settings.

Once you make your choice and complete the setup process Google Drive will immediately begin to download everything inside your Google Drive (cloud) to the Google Drive folder on your computer.

This make take a while to complete, depending on the total size of the files you’re choosing to sync.

Here’s a screenshot of the synced computer files on my computer and in Google Drive.

screenshot-sync-computer-files-finder-google-drive

Once all the files have been synced on this computer you can repeat the same process on another computer (if desired).

4. Install the Google Drive app

Now let’s get access to all those files from your smartphone or tablet. Whether you’re using an iPhone, iPad or Android device, you can download an app that will give you instant access to all the files on your Google Drive. If you’re reading this on a phone or tablet you can click one of the links below to be taken immediately to your device’s app store.

Note, downloading and using this app will not sync files between your Google Drive and smartphone (or tablet). It  will give you access to them with the ability to download them if you want.

Google Drive for iOS | Google Drive for Android

Is Google Chrome your preferred web browser? There’s a Google Drive add-on for it. Download now.

Things to Keep in Mind

Always Running

Google Drive will run in the background and continuously sync files between computers (that have Google Drive installed) and the actual Google Drive cloud itself. If you’re on a laptop, this can drain the battery quicker than usual.

There is an option to pause Google Drive. I pause it frequently when there is no need to sync files between computers.

Consumes RAM

While you will probably notice no slowdown in your normal day-to-day activities with your computer, you may want to pause Google Drive when you’re streaming video. Whether that’s a YouTube, a webinar, or a video conference, it’s best to pause or even quit (shutdown) Google Drive.

What do you think?

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2 replies
  1. Mindy
    Mindy says:

    Thanks Ryan for the tip! I just downloaded Google Drive and am ready to improve my process. No more emailing documents back and forth to myself! One question – do you store the documents you share in the drive on your computer as well? Or just in the drive?

    Reply
    • Ryan Bilello
      Ryan Bilello says:

      Mindy – great question. I keep most of my biz files inside of Google Drive and have the app downloaded on both of my computers. This way it syncs and backups in all 3 places. Does that answer your question?

      Reply

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