Google Docs (now Drive)
Breaking from Google Docs (Drive) wasn’t tricky, but it wasn’t an easy decision either. Docs is a terrific idea, all your documents available to you from any internet connected computer or web enabled device. It’s one of those things that just make sense.
There are many online office suites now. I looked at a lot of them and noted their ease of use, document compatibility, amount of storage and most of all how fast they performed. Rather than list the pro’s and con’s of several suites here, I’ll cut right to the chase because one stands out far from the rest.
While I’m not a Microsoft advocate in general, I was simply blown away by their latest SkyDrive offering. It firmly gets my seal of approval and recommendation. The online versions of Word and Excel are superb, and SkyDrives interface is easy to use. I moved everything to Microsoft SkyDrive without hesitation.
I tried SkyDrive when it was in beta (called Office 365 or something like that) but was not impressed with its performance, or ease of use, but it did offer 25 GB of free storage at the time. In the time between beta and production, Microsoft quietly created the best online office suite – period! The storage has since shrunk to 7 GB, presumably because that was Google’s storage size (Google is now 10 GB). But as with Google, you can always buy more. Microsoft SkyDrive is hands down better than Google Docs (now Drive).
If you are itching to move from Google, a web search for “online office suite” will return several results for similar services. Do yourself a favor and look at SkyDrive before any others. And no, I’ve not received anything from Microsoft for endorsing this product. It’s simply that outstanding.
Migrating was not difficult. I found it easiest to do one folder at a time.
In SkyDrive, create your folder structure to match that of Google Docs (now Drive).
- In Google Docs (now Drive), open the folder you want to export.
- Click the check box in the title bar to select all the items in the folder.
- Click the More button and select “Download…”
- Verify the formats to be exported for each document and click the Download button. Google will zip them and then the zip will be downloaded to your desktop (or default save location).
- On your desktop (I suggest a temporary folder somewhere), extract the zip file.
- In SkyDrive, navigate to the corresponding folder.
- Click the Upload button at the top of the window.
- In the dialog, open the folder where you extracted the zip file, select each file and click the Choose button. The files will be uploaded.
- Repeat these steps for your remaining folders.
When you open the documents in SkyDrive for the first time, Microsoft may convert them to true Office compatible documents.
Next up: Google Picasa (photos)