Dropbox is an easy way to share files between computers. For more on Dropbox check out the dropbox tour at their website.
The basic Dropbox/HTPC concept works like this.
- First install dropbox on your HTPC computer.
- Next set up a folder on that HTPC computer to be your dropbox media folder. This folder is where any media (movies, music, photos etc.) will appear when you share it with dropbox.
- Now add that folder as a media import directory for your HTPC software. This will work with any HTPC software – we’ll use SageTV for this example: Go to Detailed Settings>General>Media Center Import Directories and add the new directory. I added for Music, Movies and Pictures so I can add any type of media file.
- Finally install dropbox on your remote computer or simple log into the dropbox website to share any file with your HTPC.
Now for the negatives:
- dropbox stores stuff on their servers – so I wonder how transferring mp3 files and tv shows or videoclips will be handled. Does this create some sort of copyright problem?
- dropbox limits the file storage to 2gb for free users. You can buy more, but – yeah 2gb can fill up quickly.
- P2P seems like a good way to do this. It’s more complicated and if done the wrong way could cause copyright problems, but it is efficient.
- VNC – again, not as easy but you bypass the central server and the problems that raises. Probably the best way if you could make it as simple as possible
- Remote Desktop Protocol – another option and a little easier then VNC
- Other: LogMeIn, GoToMyPC and probably many others.