Dropbox Tricks: Super-Easy Tricks for Productivity and Peace of Mind

Dropbox Tricks

I’m a HUGE Dropbox fan; don’t know where I’d be without it. Dropbox is a free file hosting service, if you’re not familiar with it.

Last year the hard drive died on my main work machine, and without Dropbox and Evernote, I wouldn’t have been able to run my business. Those two apps alone enabled me to continue working straight through, until the machine came back with a new drive.

Tip 1: Access anything, anywhere.

In my recent 11 Dropbox Tricks You Didn’t Know About piece for Lifehack, I mentioned turning Dropbox into your default Documents folder:

What if you want access to all your files, everywhere? You can do that if you wish. Create a documents folder in Dropbox, and make that your default documents folder across all your computers. Of course, if you have a huge documents folder, you’ll want to get extra storage from Dropbox to make sure that you have sufficient space for all your files.

Dropbox is the perfect solution if you’re constantly shuttling between computers, and your tablet. If you decide to do that, remember to turn on Selective Sync on any computer with a small hard drive.

Tip 2. Add your business reference library to Dropbox.

Create a “Reference” folder in Dropbox,and add all your business reference materials to it. Consider materials such as:

  • Price lists;
  • Work manuals;
  • Your digital portfolio (if you’re a writer, developer or designer);
  • Presentations (you never know when you’ll need one);
  • Contracts and sales receipts;
  • Invoice templates in PDF form.

If you use your iPad for business, as I do, you can use iAnnotate PDF to fill in contracts and invoices as you need them. (Type on PDF is free, if you don’t have iAnnotate PDF.)

Tip 3: Create a vault.

We’ve all got materials we’d hate to lose. You may have old documents and photos you’ve scanned, a project you’re working on, legal documents, copies of your passport and cards if you’re traveling…

Store them in a “vault” folder in Dropbox. I’m sure you’re wondering about security and yes, it’s a concern when you’re keeping secure documents in the cloud.

You can password-protect anything that’s super-confidential at the document level. Most apps, including MS Office let you password-protect documents. (Just don’t lose the password.)

On the other hand, for super, super confidential material, forgo Dropbox, and use 1Password, which will attach documents to Vault items.

Dropbox makes your life easier, every day. New to Dropbox? 11 Dropbox Tricks You Didn’t Know About will get you up to speed.


, and on Twitter: @angee

iOS 7 Upgrade Goodies, and Beware of Error Message When Upgrading

iOS 7 looks different, and it's faster
iOS 7 looks different, and it’s faster

If you’ve got an iOS device, you’re probably thinking about upgrading to iOS 7, which is available now.

Sadly however, if you own an older device (iPhone 3G, 3GS for example), you may not be able to upgrade. More on which devices are upgradeable here.

Assuming you can upgrade, do you want to?

Definitely NOT if you have mission-critical applications which you rely on every day. If you’ve got business apps, or medical or legal apps on which you depend, make sure that they will run on iOS 7. Visit the developer’s website, or contact the developer to make sure.

Over the past week, iOS 7 versions of apps have poured out. You’re probably sick of updating your apps. :-)

Goodies you get if you upgrade

I’ve upgraded to the latest iOS because I’m curious – I want to see what’s new. Most of the features in iOS7 seemed to come under the heading of “pleasant, but so what?” for me.

Here’s what I didn’t expect. Speed. Although I’ve only been tinkering with iOS 7 for a little while, apps are notably faster, which is wonderful. So if you like a speedy device, upgrade – you’ll be pleased.

Apple’s iOS security features in iOS 7 are welcome too, especially the Activation Lock, which makes it harder for anyone who finds your device, or steals it, to get any value out of it. With any luck, thieves will decide that stealing devices isn’t worth the effort.

Wilson Rothman has an excellent article on Activation Lock:

Now, Activation Lock really ties your device to your iCloud account, in a way that will make it very hard for bad guys to prep it for resale.

So now when you turn on your device, you need to unlock it.

The upgrade experience: smooth except for an annoying error message

The upgrade on both my devices proceeded smoothly; I had to download and install a new version of iTunes first.

Then, before iOS 7 would download for either of my devices, I received this error message: “You do not have permission to access the requested resource”.

I checked Google for more information, but couldn’t find anything. Not surprising, since iOS 7 is only just available.

The first thing to do when something won’t work is always to shut everything down and reboot. Thankfully, this happens rarely in OS X. (Thank you, Apple.)

So I rebooted, and the upgrade for my phone went smoothly.

That done, I tried to upgrade my iPad and received the same error message: “You do not have permission to access the requested resource”.

Grinding my teeth just slightly, I rebooted.

And all was well… iOS 7 installed without a hitch.

If you get the error message, you may find a way of installing without rebooting, but try it if nothing else works.

Not sure whether it’s worth upgrading? Here’s Apple on what’s new in iOS 7.

I’ll be exploring iOS 7 over the next few days so I’ll have more to say about using iOS 7 for business. Enjoy the new iOS. :-)

, and on Twitter: @angee

Evernote Hacked: Password Reset Necessary

Tweet Evernote

I got up this morning, read my email, and tried to save a Web page to Evernote, using Safari’s Web Clipper. Zilch, just a login, which didn’t work.

Off to Twitter, to see whether other users had problems logging in. Whew — huge sigh of relief. Tweet from Evernote — see the above image.

Twitter is excellent. When the world goes wrong, check Twitter. :-)

I found this message, Security Notice: Service-wide Password Reset | Evernote, on Evernote’s blog:

“While our password encryption measures are robust, we are taking additional steps to ensure that your personal data remains secure. This means that, in an abundance of caution, we are requiring all users to reset their Evernote account passwords. Please create a new password by signing into your account on evernote.com.

After signing in, you will be prompted to enter your new password. Once you have reset your password on evernote.com, you will need to enter this new password in other Evernote apps that you use. We are also releasing updates to several of our apps to make the password change process easier, so please check for updates over the next several hours.”

Password reset done, and all is right with the world.

CNET reports:

In a statement sent to CNET, an Evernote representative said the breach of the company’s systems “follows a similar pattern of the many high profile attacks on other Internet-based companies that have taken place over the last several weeks.” The rep also addressed our question about what Evernote is doing to reassure current and potential users about the safety of its products.

The attack made the home page of Google News, I see.

Well, there you go — Evernote has 50 million users; typical that they would be the target of an attack.

Kudos to Evernote for catching the intrusion so quickly, AND for implementing a new version of the program immediately.

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