Using Dropbox

What is it?

Dropbox is a cloud based file storage service, providing a 2Gb "dropbox folder" which provides

  • automatic syncronisation of files in your "dropbox folder" to all machines running the dropbox application.
  • upload/download to your dropbox from any machine using a web browser
  • 30 days of file versions
  • ability to share folders with other people
  • ability to send links to individual files to other people (handy when files are too big to send by email)
  • other things -- photo gallery folder and public folder
  • more space is rewarded when you refer other people to the service, or there's annual subscriptions available.

Despite the name, it doesn't let people drop files into your dropbox.

See the Dropbox Tour

Installing Dropbox

Download the application from the Dropbox site to install on your home PC or laptop. Versions are available for PC, Mac, Linux

You can specify where you want your dropbox folder to be. The dropbox icon will be available in the menu bar, for easy access to the folder.

Dragging any file into the folder makes it available on all computers you've set up to use Dropbox, or through the web browser. No need to email files to yourself or use a usb key to do work from home!

You can also log into the Dropbox site from any computer to get web access to your files on Dropbox.

Dropbox on iPad Cover Artand other mobile devices

  • Dropbox on iPad doesn't automatically sync all the files.
  • You can select some files to be synced automatically by marking them as Favourites, others are just retrieved from Dropbox as you need them.(so you need network access).
  • You can use the "Open In" functionality to open dropbox files in other apps (this doesn't necessarily mean you can get them back to Dropbox though!)
  • You can use "Open In" from Safari and other apps to save some files to your Dropbox (PDF, Word, PPT, etc)
  • You can upload from your camera roll into Dropbox
  • You can send people a link to your dropbox files

Dropbox is just for syncing and viewing, not for editing. Many 3rd party applications support syncing or sending with/to Dropbox

Some examples for iOS:

  • Notability allows rich notetaking, including drawings, photos, text and audio. You can save notes to Dropbox, or automatically sync with Dropbox. Notes can be saved in RTF(allows editing text only on PC or text and images on Mac), or PDF just for viewing.
  • PlainText (and many others) is just for text notes, which are easily edited on any machine..Changes made on the ipad are immediately (well almost) available on the computer running Dropbox.
  • GoodReader can use Dropbox as a sync folder. Documents are kept in GoodReader, but the folder can be synced with Dropbox automatically, making it easy to get PDFs onto goodreader, and to copy back annotated PDFs.
  • MindNode is a mindmap program for ipad which can import and export from/to Dropbox in a number of different formats
  • InkPad is a vector graphics editor which can import/export to Dropbox in different formats
  • Creative Book Builder creates epubs on the iPad, and can export/import to Dropbox.

Some apps allow saving to the Camera Roll, and images can be uploaded to Dropbox using the Dropbox app.

In some cases, you can share files between apps using the Dropbox as the common file location.

Many other 3rd party apps are available. The dropbox site will soon have a catalog.

The dropbox app has been confirmed to work with the BHI-STUDENT wireless network.

Dropbox in Moodle

Dropbox has been added as a repository in Moodle. When you have the option to upload a file, Dropbox shows up on the left hand side of the file picker. The first time you use it you will be prompted for your dropbox username and password, after which files can be uploaded from your dropbox into moodle

This is one way of being able to upload files from an ipad.

 

 

 

 

Last modified: Monday, 7 May 2012, 4:30 PM