Using SkyDrive in Windows 8

Synopsis: The SkyDrive service is provided by Microsoft. You can store your files on SkyDrive and access them from anywhere using a suitable Windows 8-based device or a compatible web browser. You can also use SkyDrive to synchronize your Windows 8 settings on various compatible devices.

Your Windows 8 license includes a quota of space on SkyDrive, a storage service provided by Microsoft. Not only can you use this space to make your files accessible from different devices and from different locations, but you can also use it share them with family and friends.

To access SkyDrive from the Windows 8 Start Screen, click or tap on the “SkyDrive” tile.
If you are accessing SkyDrive for the first time and are using a local account rather than your Microsoft account you will need to add your Microsoft account.

If you do not already have a Microsoft account you can sign up from here.

Enter your email address and password and press Save.

You will be logged into SkyDrive and if this is your first visit you will be shown the files and folders in your home location.

By default a new SkyDrive account has 3 empty folders like the 3 above.

Alternatively, if you have visited SkyDrive before, you will be taken to your last accessed folder.

Right click on an empty part of the screen or flick down from the middle of the top of a touch screen and you will see these buttons (charms).

To create a new folder in the current location use the “New Folder” charm.

To upload one or more files to the current location use the “Upload” charm.

The “Thumbnails” charm is one of a pair that toggles with a “Details” charm to enable you to switch between views of the folders and files in the current location.

“Select all” selects all folders and files in the current location. Note that a selected file or folder has a tick in the top right hand corner of its tile.

This is how to upload some files to a folder. In this example use the Pictures folder. Firstly, click on or tap the Pictures folder to open it. Now access the charms as above and select “Upload”. Use the “Go up” button in the top left hand corner of the screen to start browsing to the files you want to upload. Continue browsing to find and then select the files you want to upload. Click or tap the “Add to SkyDrive” button.

The upload begins. When it is complete, the uploaded files are shown in the current folder. In this example I have uploaded 4 pictures to the current folder.

When one or more files are selected there are additional charms available on the bar at the bottom of the screen as shown in this example.

The “Download” charm can be used to download the file or files, the “Manage” charm to delete, rename or move them. If only one file is selected “Open with” enables you to to open the file in an appropriate app.

Another feature of SkyDrive is the ability to synchronize your user account settings across multiple Windows 8 devices using your Microsoft account.

To enable this feature select the default Settings charm, then choose “Change PC Settings” and then “Sync your settings”. Use the top control to switch synchronization on, and then choose which settings to sync using the other controls on the “Sync your settings” page. (Note that if you haven’t already set your PC to trusted and you want to sync your passwords you’ll need to follow the on-screen instructions to do so.)

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