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What is SkyDrive Pro?

SkyDrive is Microsoft’s cloud storage service. Much like Dropbox or Box, you can store your files online and access them at any time through a variety of different devices. Sign up is free, but you’re only offered a limit amount of storage space, with additional storage costing. SkyDrive Pro is the business version of the cloud service, offering a number of features that Microsoft believes will benefit the business user. This article will look into just what that ‘Pro’ tag brings you.
Microsoft calls SkyDrive Pro “your professional library”. Files that you store on your account are only viewable by you, but it’s easy to share them with colleagues and access them from other devices (like smartphones and tablets). Depending on what the company has opted for, files are stored in the cloud with SharePoint Online or on the business’ SharePoint Server 2013 server.
SkyDrive Pro is, essentially, the same product that consumers can use, but it orientates itself more to office use. By making use of the company’s SharePoint facilities, users can quickly share files and folders with others in the business and let them edit the files if necessary.
The main difference is that the SkyDrive Pro library is managed by your company. Whoever is in charge of the accounts has the control over how the libraries are used.
Users can make use of the SkyDrive Pro sync client. This allows files to be synced from a SkyDrive Pro library and other SharePoint team site libraries with another device. This client is available for Office 2013 or with an Office 365 subscription that makes use of Office 2013 applications. If you don’t have the Office 2013 package then the client is also available standalone.
This app lets users edit files offline if bandwidth is low, browse files, open recently used shared files, star files to be viewed offline as well as other SkyDrive features.
When using the client, if you want to sync a library then you just need to point your browser to the library and then click ‘Sync’ at the top. If you want to sync an Office 365 SkyDrive Pro library then you will find the files in a SkyDrive@organization folder under Favourites in the File Explorer.
Even if you’re using the client from Office 265 or from an on-premise site managed by the business, the syncing process should be similar. However, it entirely depends on how the IT department has set up the SkyDrive access. Some differences may be minor, like being asked for a password to confirm your identity.
Essentially, SkyDrive Pro is only relevant if you’re in charge of your company’s IT solution. And even then, if you’re a user, you’ll find that your experience with it won’t differ that much to the consumer version. SkyDrive Pro is useful for storing your company files on and sharing them securely with co-workers, while the normal SkyDrive is better for storing your personal files on. Both are free and integrate with other Microsoft applications.


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