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SDExplorer Base 3.0

Access all 25GB of your Windows Live SkyDrive account from your computer 

by Nick Peers

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License: Freeware
Operating Systems: Windows 7 (32 bit), Windows 7 (64 bit), Windows Vista (32 bit), Windows Vista (64 bit), Windows XP

Windows Live account 

Languages: English
Software Cost: Free
Date Updated: 12 July 2011
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Downloads To Date: 745
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SDExplorer Base 3.0
SDExplorer gives you limited access to your SkyDrive account through Windows.

No other online cloud storage service offers as much free storage space as Windows Live SkyDrive. It’s not all good news, though, as most of this space is only accessible through your web browser. You can get access to up to 5GB for backup and syncing purposes through Windows Live Mesh, part of Windows Live Essentials, but it’s not the same as being able to treat that 5GB (never mind the other 20GB) as a gigantic USB thumb drive, accessible from any application or your desktop.

SDExplorer aims – and to a limited degree – succeeds in rectifying that problem. Once installed, you log into your Windows Live SkyDrive account and a new icon – SDExplorer – appears in Computer. Open this and – in a sluggish manner betraying the fact your storage is actually stored somewhere else at the other end of your internet connection – you can see all the content you’ve got stored on SkyDrive.

This free Base release allows you to do more than simply browse these folders: you can copy them to your hard drive, rename them and create folders. You can also copy files into these folders – up to a maximum of 50MB per file, one of the free version’s many limits.

Other limitations include being unable to open files directly from the cloud, and neither can you save directly to the cloud from an open application on account of the fact the SDExplorer folder appears nowhere in any Open/Save dialog.

We’re also disappointed by the fact the SDExplorer folder is incapable of displaying thumbnail previews of any photos, which can make identifying the correct one more difficult.

It all adds up to a program whose potential outweighs its actual usefulness at the present time. If you’re happy to largely use it for copying files to and from your SkyDrive account without going through your web browser then it will satisfy, but if you’re looking for more integration than just simple access from the desktop, then you'll be left disappointed by both this and the more fully featured Advanced version.


A reasonable – if limited – tool for gaining desktop access to all of your Windows Live SkyDrive storage. 

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Spotlight: Free Full Software

WhatsApp Messenger 2.18.110

Free Full Commercial Software

WhatsApp Messenger is the world's most popular instant messaging app for smartphones.

You can use it to send and receive text and voice messages, photos, videos, even call your friends in other countries, and because it uses your phone's internet connection it might not cost you anything at all (depending on whether you'll pay data charges).

It's easy to set up and use. There's no need to create and remember new account names or pins because it works with your phone number, and uses your regular address book to find and connect you with friends who use WhatsApp already.

You can talk one-to-one or in group chats, and because you're always logged in there's no way to miss messages. Even if your phone is turned off, WhatsApp will save your messages and display them as soon as you're back online.

There's plenty more (location sharing, contact exchange, message broadcasting) and the app is free for a year, currently $0.99/ year afterwards.

What's New in Version 2.18.110 

• It’s now easier to start group voice and video calls. Just tap the call button in groups or select "New group call" when starting a new call in the calls tab. Group calls support up to 4 participants.