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Collaboration of files between 4 computers.  Sharing/collaborating desktop and documents in the cloud

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Last Modified: 2019-08-24
I have an organization that is looking to keep all their files in the cloud on all their computers.  The one thing that is unusual is that they want all the desktops and documents to be shared with each other so there really is no need to keep anything private within the organization but completely collaborative.  (Its only 4 computers)  So I figured that maybe there would be four folders in a cloud share named Computer1, Computer2,Computer3,Computer4.   Then within each of those folders there will be a desktop and documents folder.  Locally on each machine I would make the location for desktop and documents to its corresponding cloud folder.  Then everyone can see each others information from their cloud drive.  This is exactly what OneDrive does already, however, they want everything on the computers to be collaborative.  

The question I have is what's the best approach?  They currently have both G Suite and Office 365.  Should I setup the file structure that I just mentioned in G drive and then call it a day?  Is this possible to accomplish through SharePoint?  Is there one advantage over the other or is there a problem with this setup?

Thanks!
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James BunchSystems Engineer
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Commented:
You have a couple ways of approaching this, but I would stay inside the Office 365 ecosystem as it works with Co-Authoring easier in my experience.

You can either:

 A. Set up folder redirection via One-Drive to a shared location in Sharepoint, this way by default their items in the folders you select are automatically uploaded to the Sharepoint so it removes the human element to make mistakes on storage, You also will need to set up groups of access for the sites that is generated by your Computer 1/2/3/4.

B. Create a network share on some device in the LAN, set that to sync the files to Sharepoint via One Drive, and then have them all use their own One Drive Sync to Co-Author files for collaboration.

G-Suite is capable of handling it, it just isn't as administrator friendly when dealing with granular settings like permissions.

Author

Commented:
It sounds like A would be the choice.  The question i have is how do i do folder redirection?  Does that mean that desktop and documents folder would pop up in sharepoint as mentioned and OneDrive would remain blank?
James BunchSystems Engineer
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Commented:
In the User folder, select the files you want and right click. There is properties and from here you can choose the "Move" option to point them to your preferred location like One Drive folders.

There is folder redirection on a server as well via GPO but that won't accomplish the collaboration you are looking for.

Author

Commented:
So would I be moving OneDrive folders to the Sharepoint somehow?  Isn’t that the only way we can accomplish the collaboration?
Systems Engineer
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Commented:
OneDrive is the vehicle it takes to get the data to Sharepoint. You can either have individual OneDrive locations for each user "the typical use" but if you go into Sharepoint on the Office 365 Tenant and set up Sites on there, then you can create those Comp.1/2/3/4 locations. Here you will Sync those down to the users computer via OneDrive. Finally you "move" the folder into your OneDrive location for your assigned space and the systems handle the rest as long as they are online and signed into the OneDrive app on the computer.

Author

Commented:
Ah, I understand.  So basically I’ll create those folders in Sharepoint and then sync those folders with the One drive app.  Then I’ll change the location of local desktop and documents to those OneDrive/Sharepoint folder.
James BunchSystems Engineer
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Commented:
Pretty much, that should accomplish the goal but you can always undo it all if necessary since it takes little effort to move them back to default and then the SharePoint is part of the Office 365 so you only invested a little time.

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