SugarSync: A Complete Tour

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Welcome to SugarSync Screen

Screenshot of the Welcome to SugarSync screen
Welcome to SugarSync Screen.

After installing SugarSync to your computer, you'll see this screen, which is asking what folders you'd like to back up.

You can skip this part and select the folders later (see Section 7), or you can go ahead and choose which ones you want to be backed up now.

As you click or tap on the folders, the "Storage Space" section to the right will gather how much storage is required in your account to save all those files.

Carefully consider what you should back up before just throwing everything in.

Also consider if SugarSync is the right online backup service for you

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Folders Tab

Screenshot of the SugarSync folders tab
SugarSync Folders Tab.

Once SugarSync is installed, this is the first screen you'll see every time you open it. This is where you go to see which folders are backed up.

As you can see in the screenshot, the folder name and size are displayed. You can right-click on any folder for more options.

The number next to these folders means that the folder is syncing with another device. There's more on this in the next section.

Right-clicking lets you disable these folders so they quit backing up to your SugarSync account. It also lets you share the folders with others. There's more on the sharing aspect of SugarSync later on in this tour.

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Devices Tab

Screenshot of the SugarSync devices tab
SugarSync Devices Tab.

The "Devices" tab in SugarSync shows you all the folders that are being backed up on all your devices. It's like the "Folders" tab but it includes all your other devices as well.

This tab makes it easy to control what folders you sync between your devices. Anything you do to the files in one synced folder will be reflected in all the other devices that are also syncing that folder. This means if you remove a file from a synced folder, it will be removed in the same folder on the other devices. The same is true if you modify a file, rename it, etc.

In this screenshot, you can see two columns: one for "Desktop" and one for "Laptop," which are two devices I'm using under the same SugarSync account.

The "My SugarSync" folder is the default sync that's enabled when you install SugarSync. Any file put into that folder on either device will be synced across to the other devices, as well as stored online in your SugarSync account.

As you can see, "Pictures" is a folder being backed up from my laptop, which means its files are in sync with my online account but aren't being synced to my desktop, which is indicated by the plus sign under the "Desktop" column.

You can click or tap the plus sign to start syncing that folder with my desktop. Doing so will have SugarSync ask me where I want to save those files.

In this example, after the folder is in sync with both devices if you were to remove files in the "Pictures" folder on my desktop, the same files would be removed in that sync folder on my laptop, and vice versa. The deleted files would then be accessible only from the "Deleted Items" section of the SugarSync website.

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Public Links Tab

Screenshot of the SugarSync public links tab
SugarSync Public Links Tab.

The "Public Links" tab is used for keeping track of all the public links you've made from your SugarSync backups.

These links are used for sharing folders with anyone, even if they aren't SugarSync users. Recipients are able to preview (supported) files in their browser and download all of them as many times as they wish.

Public links do not allow other people to edit your files. Those rights are only available if you share a folder with another SugarSync user, which is explained in the next tab and on Slide 5 of this tour.

These public links can be created in Windows Explorer by right-clicking a shared folder or file and copying the link. It can also be done from within your account in a browser and via the SugarSync program in both the "Folders" and "Devices" tab.

As you can see, the total number of downloads is shown next to each publicly shared folder. You can disable a share by right-clicking them and choosing Disable public link.

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Shared By Me Tab

Screenshot of the SugarSync shared by me tab
SugarSync Shared By Me Tab.

All the folders you share with other SugarSync users are gathered together in this "Shared By Me" tab. Files and folders you share with the public are in the "Public Links" section of SugarSync.

From here, you can disable sharing any of the folders as well as edit the permissions. To change the permissions, right-click a folder and choose Manage

You're able to grant or deny add, edit, delete, and sync rights, which means you can toggle between "View Only" and "View & Edit" permissions.

These shares can be created from the actual folders in Windows Explorer as well as from the "Folders" and "Devices" tabs in the SugarSync program and from an Internet browser.

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Menu Options

Screenshot of the SugarSync menu options
SugarSync Menu Options.

This is a screenshot of SugarSync's menu options.

My Account will open your SugarSync account in a web browser so you can change your account settings, upgrade your plan, view and restore your files, etc.

Change Device Name simply opens the "General" preferences tab so you can change how SugarSync identifies the computer.

Deleted Items will open a link in your web browser to show you all the backed up files that were deleted from your computer. From there, you can easily download, restore, or permanently delete the files.

Deleted items remain in your account for 30 days, after which they're permanently removed and no longer accessible.

Some of the other options from this menu are explained in detail in the following slides.

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Manage Folders Screen

Screenshot of the SugarSync manage folders screen
SugarSync Manage Folders Screen.

The "Manage Folders" screen is the easiest way to select which folders you want to back up with SugarSync. This screen can be accessed from the Add Folders to SugarSync option on the menu.

You can back up folders by going through here and placing a check next to each one. As you do so, you can see how much storage space remains in your account from the right-hand side of the screen.

This screen doesn't necessarily need to be accessed to backup folders because you can also do it from Windows Explorer by right-clicking a folder and choosing Add folder to SugarSync.

However, using the "Manage Folders" screen makes it much easier to backup multiple folders. It's certainly a lot faster.

Though it would seem like this is the right place to stop folders from backing up with SugarSync, that's actually done in the "Folders" or "Devices" tab, not this one.

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Syncing Files Screen

Screenshot of the SugarSync syncing files screen
SugarSync Syncing Files Screen.

This screen can be seen from the View syncing files option in SugarSync's menu. All the files that SugarSync is currently uploading and downloading are shown here.

This screen can also be opened from the icon on the top right corner of the SugarSync program.

As you can see, you can monitor the progress of the uploads and downloads as well as place a star next to them.

Starring a file will push it to the top of the list so it will upload or download before the rest of the files.

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General Preferences Tab

Screenshot of the SugarSync general preferences tab
SugarSync General Preferences Tab.

This is SugarSync's "General" preferences tab, which can be found from the Preferences option in the menu.

The first option lets you enable or disable SugarSync from starting up automatically when you first log on to your computer. It's best to enable this option so your files are always protected.

"Show file and folder status icons" is enabled by default. It shows a small yellow icon on the folders that are currently being uploaded or downloaded to or from your SugarSync account. It also shows a green icon on the folders that are syncing between your devices.

You can change the description this computer is labeled as in your SugarSync account. For example, using "Upstairs Computer" or "Laptop" is an easy way to differentiate between your computers, and thereby understanding what files in your account belong to which computer.

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Bandwidth Preferences Tab

Screenshot of the SugarSync bandwidth preferences tab
SugarSync Bandwidth Preferences Tab.

Control how much bandwidth SugarSync is able to use for uploading your files from the "Bandwidth" tab of the preferences screen.

You only have three options here. The setting can be slid to the very bottom to use the lowest amount of bandwidth, to the top to utilize as much bandwidth as possible, or to the middle for a balance between the two.

The higher this option is, the faster your backups to SugarSync will complete, which means the opposite is true as it moves downward.

Not sure if you should adjust this? Backing up all the time could slow your internet connection because it's taking up too much bandwidth.

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Sign Up for SugarSync

Screenshot of the SugarSync Bird logo
© SugarSync

If cloud backup plus features you typically find only in cloud storage services is a combination that excites you, SugarSync is probably for you.

Don't miss our review of SugarSync, complete with updated pricing, details on the features that are included, and every bit of my experience when using their online backup and syncing services.