Dropbox is an online backup and file sharing tool. It works seamlessly with Windows/Mac/Linux to provide a “My Dropbox” folder that automatically synchronizes with their service. I installed it on our daughter’s laptop and told her to just save all her files in “My Dropbox”. She’s been able to do it just fine and all her work is now backed up online. If her old laptop ever dies, we can access her files on their website or set up Dropbox on a different computer and it will download everything she had stored.
Dropbox also saves revisions of files. If you save your work regularly (or use auto-save), you can go back to an earlier version of the file. This can save you from wiping out your work in Word or even recover an accidently deleted file.
Dropbox also does file sharing. My wife and I also have Dropbox accounts and it was easy to set up one folder that’s shared with the entire family. Now when our daughter wants to show us something, instead of emailing it to us, she can just copy the file to the Family folder and we all get a copy on our computer. We also use it to copy files to the one computer that’s connected to the printer, since I haven’t gotten around to figuring out what’s wrong with the printer sharing on our network.
Dropbox can also share files online. By default, all your files are private and encrypted. But if you copy a file to your Public folder, you can right-click on the file and copy a web site link to that file.
Dropbox comes with a free 2 gigabytes of storage. You can upgrade to a paid account to get 50 or 100 gigabytes. If you use my referral link, we both get an extra 256 megabytes for free.