Working with Google Drive

This entry is part 1 of 6 in the series Embracing the Cloud

Cloud storage and collaboration is busting at the seams.  There are lots of options out there, but we are going to focus on what I see as the top 3.  We’ll start with Google Drive.  The name speaks volumes as Google is heavy in the browser market place and frankly a trusted name.  They offer a solid web-based email service with a healthy amount of storage with a free account.

For a non-paid Gmail account – at least at this moment in time you get about 16GB of space.  Google Drive’s base plan is 15 GB of space free.  For most people this is a pretty decent free storage option.  If you are a person with loads of pictures or music, then this would quickly be used up, but for the person storing documents, presentations and so on, it’s a very reasonable solutions.  Of course when you bolt this onto the use of Gmail and other Google apps it is a pretty power collaboration suite. If you want to upgrade to more storage the price is even more appealing starting at $1.99 per month for 100 GB of storage.

You can’t really talk about Google Drive by itself, simply because the true power of this is all the apps that work together…Gmail, Google Docs, Google Spreadsheets and so on.  Collaborating in real time on a document or spreadsheet is so much more productive.

When you install Google Drive to your PC it creates a folder on your laptop, which syncs automatically to your drive online offering you a great way to backup your files.  Simply save your documents to this folder and your files are in the cloud.  When you install Google Drive to your machine Google Docs, Spreadsheets and Slides will also install allowing even more power using your Google Drive folder.

Google Drive also has great collaboration on the file end from sharing a folder with others to grant them editing rights to limiting that to view only.  These days file seem to be getting bigger and I just hate to choke up my email, not to mention many email providers really limit the file size.  Honestly, with the cloud collaboration tools out there today, I believe the days of sending large files in emails is really becoming a thing of the past.  Make it easy on yourself and save on your space used in your account and share a link to the file instead of emailing it.

Overall, for what you get with a free account, you really can’t go wrong.  And even if you needed to bump up the storage capacity for the size of your drive the cost is extremely reasonable.

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