Dear Lifehacker, When I’m on the road sometimes I need to access files from my computer. I have a remote desktop app, which is handy when i want to do some work from my phone, but is there a service where I can just look through my file tree and download or send a link to the file?Thanks, Away From Home
Remote access software is useful, but, as you suggest, sometimes overkill if all you want is access to a single file on a different device. It also assumes that the host machine will be on and connected at all times.
To solve your particular problem, we’d recommend using a file syncing solution such as Dropbox, SkyDrive or Box. All of these services offer apps which let you browse files from multiple client devices. While they will typically sync all files to desktop machines, on mobiles and tablets they only open files on an as-requested basis, letting you browse files and share links with them. That matches your needs fairly precisely, and the basic service is free for all of them.
The one potential disadvantage of this approach? You need to store all your files in the relevant directory, which can be a challenge if the files you require are bigger than your available storage. You can pay for extra storage on all these services, but in practical terms active work files should easily fit into the standard allocation for any of them, unless you work in a very data-intensive industry.
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