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January 15, 2014

Bittorrent Sync

By In Tech & Gadgets

This is a good tool for peer-to-peer synchronization of folders between computers.

I used to use Live Mesh to keep certain folders synchronized between my computers, but it never really left beta and Microsoft stopped supporting it when their strategy moved to Skydrive.  Since then, I have been using Dropbox, but the problems with Dropbox are:

  • It is not peer-to-peer, so your files are hosted on Dropbox.
  • You have to place your files in a dropbox folder, so you cannot synchronize folders in other locations on your filesystem.

Recently, I saw a new player enter this ‘market’, Bittorrent Sync.  As they state on their website:

Your Data Belongs to You.
Secure, unlimited file-syncing. No cloud required.

I have been using it for about a month now, and it seems to work very well.  Performance is great, and I have not seen any sync issues.  I am currently sharing the following folders:

Screen Shot 2014-01-15 at 7.33.12 AM


It also supports mobile devices!  I may use that to sync some tv shows (ShowRSS) from my pc to my iPad mini.

  1. Ken Snyder January 15, 2014

    I’m also an ex-live sync, current Dropbox user and I may consider this solution for syncing my financial docs. One thing regarding your second Dropbox con … you can relatively easily get around this symbolic links on OSX and I know there’s a windows solution out there too.

    • cobus January 15, 2014

      Yeah, I remember seeing something about that somewhere.  Guess I can scrap that con.

  2. ken snyder January 15, 2014

    Oh, any idea what their business model is? Makes me a little worried that it’s not clear.

    • cobus January 15, 2014

      no idea.  but not sure there is a need to worry about it though

  3. ken snyder January 15, 2014

    If you don’t know what the business model is, the business model is you. 🙂

    • cobus January 16, 2014

      Don’t mind paying for something useful. Prefer that model actually.

      • ken snyder January 17, 2014

        Agreed. Having a clear pay model would make me feel much better. Nothing is free … its just a transparency issue. 

        • cobus January 17, 2014

          I just read up a bit on the company.  I suspect that this tool may play into their device sync plans…
          “The BitTorrent Certified program includes a Software Development Kit (SDK) for consumer electronics manufacturers; ensuring compatibility between consumer electronics products, and the BitTorrent ecosystem of services and software.”

  4. Jonathan January 17, 2014

    Interesting, I’m also a DropBox user who is not 100% comfortable with the cloud for some content but still need a way to synch across work (Wintel win7) and OS X. Cobus on OS X do you use VMs or Bootcamp or both? 

    • cobus January 17, 2014

      Jonathan, I use Parallels with a Windows 7 VM to run all my office apps.  I share filesystems between the VM and OSX, so the usability is quite seamless.  Really a good setup.  Who knows, someday when Office Mac becomes more usable and they add OneNote, I will switch off my VM.


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