SkyDrive vs. SkyDrive Pro

As there is some confusion about SkyDrive and SkyDrive Pro, here are my findings after some tests.

SkyDrive

imageSkyDrive is the consumer online storage service which Microsoft provides for Windows Live users.

Offline Synchronization:

Since 2012 Microsoft provides a simple sync-application to sync your SkyDrive content into a selected folder in your local file system. The SkyDrive client can be easily downloaded from the web.

imageMetro Client:

For the use on tablet pcs using Windows 8, there is a Metro style application for quick and easy touch-enabled access to all of your SkyDrive files. Other than the desktop application, this app doesn’t sync your files for offline use.

SkyDrive Pro

imageSkyDrive Pro is an online service for business users using Office 365 business plans, which include SharePoint Online, or SharePoint Server 2013. SkyDrive Pro is not really a new invention in SharePoint Server 2013. The SkyDrive Pro is only a website with one specific document library which works similar to other document libraries in SharePoint, but is included into the MySite of the user and per default only accessible for that specific user. In the previous version of SharePoint it was called “My Content”, which was a Website, including 2 document libraries for personal and public documents.

Offline Synchronization:

To get your files offline, there is a client application which syncs files of a selected document library into a local folder. This application is called SkyDrive Pro. In earlier versions it was called SharePoint Workspace 2010 and before that it was called Groove. The SkyDrive Pro client, as far as i found out, is included in Microsoft Office 2013 Professional Plus, as its predecessor SharePoint Workspace 2010 was in Office 2010 Professional Plus.

Syncing Files offline without SkyDrive Pro or using the consumer SkyDrive application is not possible. Pressing the sync-Link in SharePoint 2013 without SkyDrive Pro client installed will only give an error “No apps are installed to open this type of link (grvopen)”.

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