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First Looks at Microsoft's New "Live Mesh" Platform 208

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the live-mesh-all-nude dept.
technirvana writes "Microsoft's Live Mesh service launched today as an invite-only 'technology preview.' It is Microsoft's attempt to tie all of our data together. Live Mesh synchronizes data across multiple devices (currently just Windows computers, but theoretically it will extend to mobile and other devices in the future) as well as to a web desktop that exists in the cloud. It can sync data across devices used by a single users, as well as create shared spaces for multiple users." And since it's run by Microsoft, you know you can trust it.
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First Looks at Microsoft's New "Live Mesh" Platform

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  • by bagboy (630125) <neo@arcti c . net> on Wednesday April 23, 2008 @11:02AM (#23171812)
    "you know you can trust it" Yeah, I'm gonna trust it in about the same fashion.
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by totmacher (1148817)
      pfft "technology preview"?

      Try PowerFolder. It's a mature alternative:
      * The software works since 2003
      * It gets actively developed
      * It's open source - a free Basic client is available
      * There is a commercial Pro client with advanced security and connectivity features and 5 GB Online backup space

      http://www.powerfolder.com/ [powerfolder.com]

      Best regards,
      Christian
      • I certainly wouldn't trust data to a company that can't make a web site that renders well in Firefox. They have made an assumption about what minimum font size you will use.
        • by Allador (537449)
          Looks beautiful in Opera 9.27, at various zoom levels.

          It looks great in FireFox too, unzoomed.

          If you're using zoom levels or nonstandard font sizes in FireFox, then thats a firefox problem, its never handled that well, while browsers like Opera handle it beautifully.

      • Personally I like what IBM's doing for collaboration -- building their own set of secure Second Life servers based on an agreement with Linden Labs. Although I think a collaborative environment based on Warcraft might be more fun, and better team building.

        They could even introduce their own gold spammers from the Sales department, trolling for pre-sales resources. "Are you annoy with current position? Spending too much time mining gold when better use of time? Talk to ERP sales team at http://xxxintranet [ibm.com]

    • I would not trust it no matter what company created it. They can have my data when they pry it from my cold, dead computer.
    • Remember Microsoft Passport [zdnet.com]? That was another attempt to dominate users.

      Google: "Do no evil."

      Microsoft: "The only way we know how to make money is by doing evil."

      My opinion, but I'm not the only one who thinks that way.
  • by phooka.de (302970) on Wednesday April 23, 2008 @11:03AM (#23171828)
    So they "invented" something like .mac by Apple, right? The latter is of course being overpriced and lacking compelling reasons to subscribe, but still, you can access your Mac from anywhere, it offers email, storage etc.

    So, anything new here?
  • Looks interesting (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Zeinfeld (263942) on Wednesday April 23, 2008 @11:03AM (#23171830) Homepage
    Its an interesting idea, the limitations of synctoy are quite apparent. There is no reason why backup should be a separate operation these days it should all be automatic. Be nicer when they support mac as well.
  • In one proof-of-concept demo, a photo that was taken via a cell phone camera, was automatically synced to a Mesh that pushed the pictures out to a Facebook photo album.

    It was certainly impressive to see data -- in this case a cell phone camera picture -- almost instantly synced across multiple devices and saved to a web service immediately after it was created.

    Prepare yourself for the flood of home-made porn (BAD home-made porn) that is "synced across multiple devices".

    And for the first people fired for "up

  • Antitrust? (Score:4, Funny)

    by AKAImBatman (238306) <akaimbatman@gUUU ... inus threevowels> on Wednesday April 23, 2008 @11:05AM (#23171860) Homepage Journal
    Am I the only one who thinks of the movie Antitrust [imdb.com] when I hear this? I wonder if Microsoft bumped off a few OSS developers to get the code for Synap-- err... I mean... Live Mesh? And now that I think about it, is my wife really my wife or actually a Microsoft spy? Hmm.... /insert paranoia and tinfoil hats
  • by owlnation (858981) on Wednesday April 23, 2008 @11:07AM (#23171894)
    MS needs to fire the marketingdroid they have working out the names of things.

    From the people who brought you "squirt" as a verb, now you have "mesh". A word that most people immediately associate with the word "trap".

    I suspect the marketingdroid may be a saboteur.
    • by Thanshin (1188877) on Wednesday April 23, 2008 @11:33AM (#23172240)
      The entire marketing team is trapped in a basement and the only way they have to ask for help is through the product names.

      Hmmm, let me see... Office visual studio enterprise vista team...

      ...

      ...

      Bah, let them rot.
      • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

        by Aram Fingal (576822)
        WinCE and WUS (Windows Update Server) are good examples too although both have since been replaced with other names. Just pronounce the acronyms as words.
      • The entire marketing team is trapped in a basement and the only way they have to ask for help is through the product names.

        Does this explain "Bob"? I didn't think it rained that much in Redmond.

  • sorry your wrong (Score:5, Insightful)

    by peragrin (659227) on Wednesday April 23, 2008 @11:08AM (#23171910)
    It will only work with Windows Mobile devices. Compatibility with any other OS is strictly prohibited by military MSFT doctrine.

    This mesh won't work with generic phones, Linux phones, the iPhone, or any one else. Remember it took the EU years in court and a billion dollar fine to just get MSFT to release Networking Protocols.

    *note some sarcasm was used above, if you can not detect it your sarcasm meter is broken, or running windows and constantly pegged*
    • by notaprguy (906128) *
      Ummmm....wrong. MESH will work with non-Windows OS's.
      • And you know because.... ? Please, enlighten us.
      • by peragrin (659227)
        really how? Mesh is using custom activeX controls with RSS. Since RSS can't do two way file transfers it stands to reason you can only remotely view your data but not modifiy it with non windows systems.

        MSFT is well known for making totally closed locked down systems first.

        Oh and how is your PlayforSure music player working? So Glad you you believed MSFT's marketing material. It Playsforsure until august.
    • by ribond (149811)
      I love that slashdot is still fighting MS, regardless of what they do. This is an announcement for a private beta to sync data between devices -- and the response is all piss & vinegar about how someone else might have sync'd (sank? sunk?) data first.

      Genius, someone tag that with "insightful".

      Where are the responsible posters? I miss arguments with thinking slashdot participants.
  • Could be great. (Score:3, Insightful)

    by SkankinMonkey (528381) on Wednesday April 23, 2008 @11:08AM (#23171912)
    Despite the source, this could be a great tool for people if implemented correctly (and free). I already find myself using addons for firefox like FoxMarks to synchronize myself across several desktops/OS`. If this had even limited cross-platform support, or an open-API I'd imagine it could go pretty far.
    • Re:Could be great. (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Uncle Focker (1277658) on Wednesday April 23, 2008 @11:19AM (#23172058)

      If this had even limited cross-platform support, or an open-API I'd imagine it could go pretty far.
      Did you miss the part where it's a Microsoft product?
      • Notice I had a caveat at the beginning of my post. I do not believe Microsoft will completely open it up, but if a rival company (say google) were to break open with a competing suite, they (MS) may be forced to open up their API, to an extent, so they can compete.
  • by spazoid12 (525450) on Wednesday April 23, 2008 @11:10AM (#23171936)
    "And since it's run by Microsoft, you know you can trust it."

    I wonder if we'd get that comment if it were a Google service. Can we trust Google any more than Microsoft? Around here it sure seems like Google gets a free pass on everything and can do no wrong...
    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by Uncle Focker (1277658)

      Around here it sure seems like Google gets a free pass on everything and can do no wrong...
      Then you must not read much of the responses in Google threads. They get bashed all the time for their "privacy" policy among other things.
    • by WhiteWolf666 (145211) <sherwinNO@SPAMamiran.us> on Wednesday April 23, 2008 @11:32AM (#23172222) Homepage Journal
      While I don't think they are saintly, Google hasn't pulled half of the shady shit Microsoft has. In terms of business ethics, Microsoft is really right up there with the uglier oil companies and tobacco company. They don't think in terms of what is legal; they think in terms of opportunity cost to illegal actions, with a healthy dosage of risk.

      One should suspect all companies, as they are built on profit motives, however, Microsoft has a very very shady track record to boot.
      • While I don't think they are saintly, Google hasn't pulled half of the shady shit Microsoft has. In terms of business ethics, Microsoft is really right up there with the uglier oil companies and tobacco company.

        Yeah! The day I started smoking--there was a dude from "big tobacco" who came up to my house and handed me a cigarette from a pack that HAD THE SURGEON GENERAL'S WARNING SCRATCHEDOFF!!!11one1!. Tehy are evil!!!!

        Whatever. And how the hell are oil companies evil? Because the largest cost of a
    • I trusted Microsoft with my emails [slashdot.org] and got shit thrown in the face. Google on the other hand give me a free IMAP account with more and more space all the time.
  • by igotmybfg (525391) <slashdot@da n i e l t h o m p s on.net> on Wednesday April 23, 2008 @11:14AM (#23171988) Homepage
    ... until they turn the servers off. Yesterday's PlaysForSure debacle comes to mind.
  • by IGnatius T Foobar (4328) on Wednesday April 23, 2008 @11:19AM (#23172054) Homepage Journal
    Microsoft has tried this before, and the industry already told them "Go away, Microsoft. We don't want HailStorm [nytimes.com] acting as the official Microsoft Big Brother of our technology lives."
    • by esocid (946821)
      The difference between the that and Live mesh is that LM isn't solely designed to store things on their servers. It does have that capability, Live Desktop, but someone would have to be crazy to store all your personal, financial, and sensitive information on a data retention server, owned by MS no less. I would have no use for LM, but would be very skeptical of using it if I did. Set up a VPN if you are that intent of viewing something at home from work, or vice-versa. MS may be heading in a direction, but
  • by jimicus (737525) on Wednesday April 23, 2008 @11:25AM (#23172134)
    Live Mesh synchronizes data across multiple devices (currently just Windows computers, but theoretically it will extend to mobile and other devices in the future) as well as to a web desktop that exists in the cloud.

    Extend to other devices? Unless they're running Windows Mobile, pull the other one.

    To my mind, this is an attempt to create a killer app which will tie everyone to Windows for another 5-10 years much like "I want shared calendars in Outlook and I'm prepared to pay a lot of money to get it" has tied businesses to Exchange for so long.
  • Activesync (Score:3, Insightful)

    by esocid (946821) on Wednesday April 23, 2008 @11:30AM (#23172196) Journal
    So I'm guessing activesync is going to be abandoned in the future for Live Mesh in terms of mobile devices? I never personally used activesync but I wonder if LM will absorb its responsibilities, and compatibilities. As long as there is no phoning home, I can see this having some good applications, but skepticism is always healthy.
  • Yeah right (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward
    Firstly to things:

    1. I can't see the demo's, why? Apparently to "install Microsoft Silverlight to have a 'better' experience"... So no experience at all then.

    2. I just must have a "Windows Live" account to sign in.

    If these two small examples of Microsoft hubris, lock-in and lack of anything resembling open standards are to go by, then, no. No I shall not be partaking in their oh so, 'Wow' experience.
  • Microsoft announced today that the Live Mesh servers are going dark on June 1. Any data that users stored in the Opens Fo' So' Live Mesh format will no longer be accessable. Microsoft would like to remind its customers that its users should begin printing and re-keying any important documents before the g-dark date.
  • Now that everybody is pre-bought it should only take a week or 2.
  • by WhiteWolf666 (145211) <sherwinNO@SPAMamiran.us> on Wednesday April 23, 2008 @12:00PM (#23172626) Homepage Journal
    To avoid any Microsoft product with the term "Live!" in the title?

    Sure, actually, you should avoid all MS products, period. But especially the "Live!" Products. There's like... 200 of them on Wikipedia, and I've heard of maybe 10.
  • by stubear (130454) on Wednesday April 23, 2008 @12:04PM (#23172664)
    And since it's run by Microsoft, you know you can trust it. ...and the rest of the Slashdot staff for telling us how to think. I was afraid I was going to have to RTFA but that little quip at the end spared me from having to do anything other then clear away some space in front of my leg so I don't stub my toe.
  • by nguy (1207026) on Wednesday April 23, 2008 @12:55PM (#23173380)
    The days of single platform computing and lock-in are over. After Vista and "Plays for Sure", even the most die-hard Microsoft fans must have figured out that betting on all-Microsoft solutions is a sure way to lose.
  • Because Sharepoint is kind of like this already, it keeps everybody in our organization synchronized as far as our documentation and other things.

    Of course, the willingness to bash is always entertaining, but the primary strength of Microsoft is its OWN interoperability, and making it easier for folks to keep synchronized only enhances their market position.

    But please, continue with the bashing... it really makes *Nix seem like a viable alternative when all the sysadmins for those systems shit on Microsoft,
    • by Pop69 (700500)
      I'll bash away all i like, because my *nix machines run so smoothly I have the time to, unlike my GUI obsessed colleagues in windows land
    • Of course, the willingness to bash is always entertaining

      I thought the willingness to bash was due to the unpronounceability of "ksh" and "zsh".

      And I'd rather use LaTeX with CVS than be locked into Microsoft.
  • Microsoft is finally using PNG with alpha channel on one of their website. Is this new? Can we ditch IE6 in web contracts yet?

  • Novell called - why did it take MS seven years to "innovate" iFolder [wikipedia.org]?

    Does not being cross-platform qualify as "innovation" now?

    • by Degrees (220395)
      After I posted my snarky comment, I RTFA. Turns out Live Mesh is more a clone of Gnome Conduit [conduit-project.org]
  • Although I'm a die-hard Mac fan who owns three Macs and is a Mac system administrator, I have recently become to loath Apple, more and more, because, although the Mac experience is great, Apple is, in my eyes, becoming more and more like Microsoft in its policies, if not its products.

    Witness the fact that Apple dropped Java as a core programming language on OSX two years ago, and has now stopped developing the C/C++ API known as Carbon, leaving you with exactly one native programming language to develop GUI

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