Syncing folders on multiple computers (Mac)

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Umcorps
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Syncing folders on multiple computers (Mac)

Postby Umcorps » Fri Mar 25, 2011 10:22 pm

Not sure how many people this might apply to, but thought I'd share a rather slick solution to the problem of syncing folders across computers.

I mostly work on my studio computer but there are times when I'm travelling and need to work things up on my laptop. But too often the folders where I keep my noatikl and mixtikl work in the studio don't tally with the same folders on my laptop because I forget to keep then synchronised. Or that's how it was.

But I've now discovered that using a combination of Dropbox and symbolic links means that I can keep specific folders synchronised automatically, regardless of where I am. So this is how it happens...

You need a Dropbox free account from https://www.dropbox.com/gs. Install that on both computers.

Next you need a copy of MacDropAny from http://wiki.dropbox.com/DropboxAddons/MacDropAny on both computers.

On my studio computer, there is a folder in Documents that holds all my personal noatikl and mixtikl content. Lets call it MyFiles. Drag that from Finder to MacDropAny to create a symbolic link in Dropbox to those files. Once its updated, pause Dropbox to stop it syncing on that machine.

On the secondary computer, pause Dropbox syncing on that machine then open the Dropbox folder, and from there, drag MyFIles to MacDropAny. It will ask you to identify where that folder goes. Navigate to ~/User/Documents in that dialogue and drop it there.

Then resume sync for Dropbox on both machines. From now on, the MyFiles folder is automatically synchronised across both computers. You don't have to do anything else.

This works for any folder on your system. If you are a mixtikl desktop user the folder in Documents/Intermorphic/Mixtikl/paks is where your saved mix files are located. So, if you have mixtikl installed on two machines this is a simple way to ensure that all your mixes are always available regardless of the machine you are working on.


I think there is a similar utility to MacDropAny for Windows users as well to let you do the same trick but I haven't tested that.

Hope that helps.

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Re: Syncing folders on multiple computers (Mac)

Postby imtim » Mon Mar 28, 2011 7:04 am

Thanks for sharing that tip Mark!

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Re: Syncing folders on multiple computers (Mac)

Postby Loopy C » Thu Jun 23, 2011 1:08 pm

I had been using Dropbox but the addition of MacDropAny solved several issues for me...big thanks Mark!

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Re: Syncing folders on multiple computers (Mac)

Postby Umcorps » Thu Jun 23, 2011 2:35 pm

Glad it was useful info, Chris!


Word of warning though. Be sure you have Time Machine looking after your back. There is a downside to this kind of transparent syncing.

I was working on a bunch of OGG files on the laptop and used a batch processor that managed to completely corrupt each and every one of them. And as they were in a synced folder, the next time I turned on the studio Mac, every corrupted file duly overwrote the working copies in the folder on that system as well. Needless to say, I wasn't completely up to date with my backups on that Mac. :oops:

So that cost me two days work - one to do the work and one to do it all over again.

Suddenly, the Time Capsule looks very appealing. :wink:

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Re: Syncing folders on multiple computers (Mac)

Postby Loopy C » Thu Jun 23, 2011 5:01 pm

Gotcha...my MO is as soon as I finish ANY work I wouldn't want to lose I copy it manually to two external drives, 'Deja Vu' runs hourly, every day I make dvd back-ups of unprocessed originals and every week I update my drive clones for entire system so am somewhat redundant ;-) My main use for dropbox are my hard drive catalogs, CD/DVD catalogs, and 1 Password/Steel (serial numbers) databases though this new technique you shared has me looking further but my internet connection is only 1 mB/s so can't get too crazy.

What batch processor may I ask (as I use many of the main popular ones but only have one with the ability to write 'in place' I am now curious?

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Re: Syncing folders on multiple computers (Mac)

Postby Umcorps » Thu Jun 23, 2011 5:12 pm

Loopy C wrote:What batch processor may I ask (as I use many of the main popular ones but only have one with the ability to write 'in place' I am now curious?


I don't quite recall. It wasn't on my hard drive for very long as I junked that piece of shit as soon as I realised what it had done, but it was an open source ID3 tag editor if that narrows the field down any.

The plan was to add copyright information to the ID3 tag but (and this may be a limitation of the OGG format, I'm not clear on that point) the programme wouldn't do that without decoding and then re-encoding the entire file - an operation that went less than flawlessly. :evil:

So I went from a folder full of high quality OGGs to digital noise in under 30 seconds.

You get what you pay for I suppose.....

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Re: Syncing folders on multiple computers (Mac)

Postby Loopy C » Thu Jun 23, 2011 7:15 pm

No worries then...I use Sample Manager (which has the 'In Place'), Sound Grinder Pro, and Audio Finder (he refuses to do 'in place PRECISELY because he himself had what happened to you with other apps) mainly so just wanted to check as I hardly do OGG ;-) I

Only SM does the 'in place' which is the most convenient but still I copy the original pre-processed files/ folder and keep the copy safe until I have heard/inspected all my processed.
Last edited by Loopy C on Thu Jun 23, 2011 8:12 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Syncing folders on multiple computers (Mac)

Postby Umcorps » Thu Jun 23, 2011 7:20 pm

Loopy C wrote: but still I copy the original pre-processed files/ folder and keep the copy safe until I have heard inspected all my processed.


Yeah, I learned about the wisdom of that approach a few weeks back. :lol:

All I need to do now is remember the pain next time.......


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