An Introduction to Windows Live Sync and How to Migrate from Live Mesh

Play An Introduction to Windows Live Sync and How to Migrate from Live Mesh

The Discussion

  • User profile image

    Are we ever going to get an API for this?

  • User profile image

    Will the transition from Live Sync Beta to RTM require uninstall and reinstall?  With multiple machines and distinct settings on tens (if not 100) folders, the mere process of getting all folders properly configured takes a long time.  I'll take the hit one time, but not twice.

  • User profile image

    I really hate to be pessimistic here but:

    2) Your Office demo is confusing, it has nothing to do with Sync. Even better, syncing office documents to 'Skydrive Sync Storage' (who tought this would not be confusing regaring to normal Skydrive? ) does not allow to go to Office Web Apps.

    Skydrive So when you say 'you did not get the whole experience' in Live Mesh. Well, you still don't have it...

    3) Internet explorer sync does not sync feeds, only Favorites? Why ?
    4) As a developper who followed the lifestory of Mesh and Sync, why is it running MOE.exe and not LOE.exe ?
    5) What about messenger sync ? ( emoticon, chat history )


    It was a great video, but I did not really learn anything new. I want to know where it is headed...

    I know it is a V1 product, but somehow it is not. The V1 was Live Mesh and this seems like a V1.01 two years later, I feel like more could have been done.


    Also, where is the official channel for feedback? is there a connect website? 


    But, the interface to set up syncs and view what is going on is very good ! Better then Mesh I would even say. GUI is better then Mesh. I do miss an indication in Windows Explorer to know a folder is set up to sync (aka, blue folders in Mesh)

  • User profile image

    Generally, I'm very pleased with Live Essentials.  The decision to go with split cloud storage areas obviously adds complexity.  I find the term "synced folders" confusing...and quickly assumed that was part of SkyDrive.  A couple of suggestions for this Beta...


    1. In Devices, get rid of the menu "View Synced Folders" and rename the "SkyDrive synced storage" device to "SyncDrive".  Also change SkyDrive references in Live Sync client to SyncDrive.

    2. In SkyDrive, get rid of the menu "View Synced Folders".

    3. Add SyncDrive to the Windows Live logo/menu.

    4. Either enhance Office Web Apps to allow "view only" of Office documents stored in SyncDrive OR let users copy file(s) between SyncDrive and SkyDrive.


    ..other suggestion

    5. You've got to get a developer story around application settings could be extremely useful.  Also, its not clear to me but it seems limited to peer-to-peer mode.   I really think it should include a "hidden" SyncDrive device folder.  Ideally, I'd like to see a Sync XML file spec that lets developer reference registry and file based resources.

  • User profile image

    +1 really, great suggestions!


    SyncDrive might be strange but it is nessesary because 'Skydrive Synced Storage' is not really skydrive... Or you could indicate with 2 color on one 25GB progress bar (one color, sync, one color skydrive). But that might be confusing to.


    Indeed a developer story need to be added, and the new does not say one thing about it.

  • User profile image

    I'm not sure what the deficiency with the laptop video is ... but the laptop screen was readable (not fuzzy) when on the wall behind versus when shown as the main feed in the video.  Go to 3 minutes and 20 seconds and view how much clearer the laptop screen is in the background.

  • User profile image

    Live Mesh fan -- could be for Sync, too, but I don't get why Sync can't share the 25GB provided by SkyDrive for cloud storage. There can't be a technical reason for this, so what is the reason?

  • User profile image

    I was really excited about Sync and just finished installing it only to find that I can't select the sync location for remote computers! This seems like a required basic feature for syncing two folders and a huge deal breaker for me. Can you even call what Live Sync does.... synchronization? Copying a folder from one computer into the personal directory of the others doesn't sound like synchronization. More like backing up. Perhaps I'm not understanding something here...


    Lets say I have a laptop and a desktop. On both computers I create a Data partition (D:\). Both computers have a D:\Work folder. Please correct me if I'm wrong but using the new sync, I can't synchronize these two folders. As soon as I set up sync on, say, the laptop. It will start putting the Work folder on the desktop under the personal directory. If I make changes to a file in D:\Work on the desktop, it won't get synced to the laptop.


    Is there an official feedback channel where I can voice this concern?

  • User profile image

    I think Live Sync is a downgrade from Live Mesh:

    1. From 5 Gb to 2 Gb storage space, instead of increasing to 25 Gb like all sites has done lately.
    2. No feed of changes, neither local, like the mini pop-up that appeared when hovering Mesh systray icon, nor online like has.
    3. No option to share files/folder with read-only permission, only you can switch between allow or not allow to change permissions.
    4. No easy access from Wave 4 home to devices (upper links that are displayed in all the wave 4 products, ex. hotmail, home, profile, calendar, etc.).
    5. No Windows' context menu support when right clicking a folder and file.
    6. No way to invite people to share a folder locally
    7. No Windows Live Messenger integration, you can't for example share a file/folder within a conversation.
    8. Error on signing in advice you to restart the pc instead of show you a window to correct the error, I solved this by trying to signing in with Windows Live Messenger and then correcting the "saved" password that everytime I use CCleaner is changed...

    Come on guys, what's going on here? 2 years waiting for an upgrade from Mesh and you gave us this? I am a Windows Live fan boy but I can't live with this... Mesh is one of my most used features... and now I can't use it as I used to because of the small amount of storage!

  • User profile image

    It is a downgrade indeed.


    About number 4: the 'Devices' link is onder the menu under the 'Windows Live'-logo in the header. But indeed, you need to know there is a menu there. Not easy to discover if you don't know.

  • User profile image


    I have a use case that probably is not possible or involves tons of command parameters.. It would be nice to get this solved somehow Smiley


    There are 4 computers in my dorm, another 4 at my parents home. At my side there is a desktop (1,5TB disk capacity), 1 tablet to work with (400GB), 1 tablet to present (120GB), 1 Windows Home Server (3TB). Over at the house of my parents there are about additonal 3TB of disk space splitted across the machines.


    Now I'd like to do the following:

    Go through all files/subdirs in certain folders (My documents, My Pictures, ...)

    If a file is less than 3 months old it should be synchronized between the computers.

    + If it is a docx or pptx it should be uploaded to SyncDrive.

    + If it gets updated on two computers at the same time w/o sync I want to merge them if possible

    If a file is older then 3 months it should be moved to my Windows Home Server (running Vail)

    + If a file on WHS gets edited it should be resynced to all computers for 3 months


    Any possibility to get this done? Smiley


    Another use case (that you probably won't do..) I'd like to have all files within version control (like Tortoise SVN) on my WHS.



    Microsoft Student Partner

  • User profile image

    RFC1: Get rid of the sys tray icon

    RFC2: Integrate command to sync a folder into Windows Explorer (add a menu titled "Sync" > "Sync to a device", > "show status")

    RFC3: Integrate Sync into Windows Sync Center (control panel)

    RFC4: Add a link to Sync interface to Network and Sharing Center

    RFC5: Add computers that are synced into the network map of the Network and Sharing Center

    RFC6: Add Sync warnings into Windows Action Center

    feature request: Propagate warnings to Windows Home Server Connector

    feature request: Add XBox syncing

    feature request: give credit where credit is due.. Your "About Windows Live Sync Beta" window isn't telling very much Wink

  • User profile image

    Can I uninstall mesh, install Live Sync. Test it and then uninstall Live Sync and reinstall mesh without loosing any data?

  • User profile image
    Anand Babu


    Appreciate the comments and feedback. The official channel for feedback is here:


    Also – please report bugs here:


    @Rbear -  We really appreciate the interest in a developer offer – both for folder sync and settings sync. In this release of Windows Live, we prioritized our Messenger Connect APIs but will consider extensibility for Sync in the future.


    @KDawg  - Going from Beta to RTM should be a smooth process – with settings preserved. Also – we’ve integrated with Microsoft Update so you should get auto prompted.


     @Ckurt / @USArcher  - SkyDrive has 2GB of Sync storage and 25GB of web storage for Office / photos. We hear you on the confusion and desire to see these things work more seamlessly together. This is something we will look at in future releases. Feedback during the beta period (and afterwards) will help us prioritize – so please keep it coming.  


    @andreasbalzer - Thanks for the suggestions! Please use the feedback link above. Shell / context menu integration  is something we will consider in a future release.


    A few folks had questions on app settings. First, Sync uses cloud storage to sync app settings – so both devices don’t need to be on at the same time for the sync to happen. (Note that there is no way to access settings stored in the cloud.) As for app support., we focused initially on two of the most common (IE and Office) while we consider how to bring this capability to more apps in the future.


    Will reply to others shortly...



    Anand Babu


    SkyDrive / Sync product management

  • User profile image

    you know.. "not many people use 5gb" is such a bad excuse... if that was the case, there would be even more reason to keep the 5gb limit (or even more logically, the 25gb limit of skydrive)!

    how many online storage site actually keep the storage on hand for what the garantee users? none...


    if you want to limit storage, thats fine, but atleast be honest about it and why you're doing it. we're devs, you cant bs the bs:ers Wink


    conflict resolution seems a little better than mesh, but i still miss a simple list of all the conflicts.. but atleast you can apply an action to all the items now.


    also, the ability to set sync settings on subfolders on a shared folder is really needed imo, having to change my whole file structure just for sync is uncool


    i also really miss the activity window from folder share.. the new sync window doesnt tell you very much


    it would also be interesting to hear why the messanger connect api, something that i for one never herd of and doesnt think sounds very compelling, was prioritized over a folder / settings sync api that has been promised since pdc 2008 (with mesh) and has been asked about multiple times in this thread as well as before..


    oh well.. Smiley new messenger is pretty slick and photogallery is cool stuff Smiley

  • User profile image
    Anand Babu

    Sync should be able to do what you want. Try the steps below - but first stop syncing the folder you're working with. (You can do this from

    1. Create the sync folder on one computer by clicking 'Sync a folder' in the Sync client
    2. In the Select Devices dialog, click OK without selecting any other computer. This will create the folder but not start syncing it yet. This is important since if you select another computer, Sync will automatically sync the folder to your personal directory on the other computer - which is what's happening now.
    3. Go to each of your other computers and open the Sync client. You will see the folder you created. Choose “Sync this folder” and select the local directory you wish to use (i.e. D:\Work)
  • User profile image
    Anand Babu

    This should work - although its not a scenario we have tested. Also - uninstalling Mesh on your PC should not delete any data you have stored in Mesh online storage

  • User profile image

    Lots of unhappy people:


    I hope Microsoft can offer some insight soon.

  • User profile image

    Thanks Anand! The steps you described work perfectly! Big Smile I am now using sync to keep the data partitions on all 3 of my computers synchronized.


    Perhaps it would be helpful to add a note somewhere in the UI that you need to initiate the sync from each remote computer if you want to choose a local folder.

  • User profile image
    scott Jaworski

    Migrating to Live Sync is not nearly as complicated as they made it sound.

    I blogged about the process, these steps will get you through it.


  • User profile image

    Thx for all answering some of our question! Really grate to hear somebody. Even if most of the anwsers are "good for future release"


    The UI should indeed have a not saying you need to set up the sync from the other machine of you want to select local folder on destination machine!


    Do you have any news about why MOE.exe was used and not the new LOE.exe for sync ?


    ALSO: please read this very good article: . The last part is the most conserning for me "skydrive in name only"

  • User profile image

    What about this vision?



    Mesh enabled applications - that would have been so cool. I'm waiting now since 2 years, I'm not waiting any longer and have registered for Dropbox, they have an API. But what made Mesh different was, that I could store any object, any class into a Mesh object and it will be synced to all devices. It was not only file based syncing, I could sync all kind of business data. Now this is gone  Sad Why???? Crying

  • User profile image

    <redacting>, read a later post that addressed my concern.



  • User profile image

    On Live Mesh I was able to see synced folders better because the shared folders were blue in color. With WIndows Live mesh this is gone.
    Also when Live mesh was working to sync the files/folders you can see an animated icon. It helps to know when syncing is going on. But this also has been removed with Windows Live mesh.
    I was so happy with Live mesh but not anymore. Windows Live has reduced the functionality of the previous version.

  • User profile image

    I agree with Wisam. The new Live Mesh really is a downgrade of the functionality of the old Live Mesh. 
    1) Blue folders within Windows Explorer let you know which folders you were syncing. That is gone.
    2) You could easily sync and/or share any folder with a right-click. That is gone. 
    3)  You also had news feeds for each folder you were syncing. This was great to get a glance of what was happening in the folder with those whom you share the folder. That is gone.
    4) There was also the blue icon in the systray. This provided quick access to your synced folders, your devices, and your news across all your folders. It also showed you if you were currently syncing up or down from the cloud. That is gone.
    Basically all of the great intuitiveness if Live Mesh is gone, and we are going back in time to a crappy user interface that makes it difficult to use. Let alone the fact that installing Live Essentials just flat out removes all your syncing and you have to set up everything again, and then also share everything again with your peers. 
    Microsoft really didn't think this one through. So Dropbox it is. 

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