SkyDrive Delivers Solid Cloud Storage Integration With Office 2013

By Jeff Cogswell  |  Posted 2013-02-19 Print this article Print

Also the first time, another message in the browser appeared saying, “Stream and use your Word 2013 subscription!” I clicked “Use Word 2013” and never saw the message again when I clicked the “Open in Word” option.

Then Chrome popped up a warning to ask me to launch the application; from there, Word opened, but only after it popped up a warning about opening remote files and that they can contain viruses. And finally back in the browser, the SkyDrive page asked me if it opened successfully and if I had any issues. (Whew!)

The other option is to run right in the browser using Microsoft’s online version of Office. It works great and it’s something I’ll cover in the next article about Office 2013.

But before wrapping up this discussion of Office, I need to say a couple more quick things. Because of my years of programming and my experience with lost files, I tend to be a bit obsessive about saving my files. I’ll press Ctrl+S very often so I don’t lose anything. And apparently I’ll press it a second time right afterwards, even though it doesn’t do anything different other than to save the file again.

But this double-saving causes problems in Office and it’s a habit I had to break. When I press Ctrl+S while editing a file saved in a SkyDrive, Word (and the other Office programs) show a little bar at the bottom with the words “Uploading to SkyDrive.” It only takes a couple seconds to upload, and Word lets me continue working during that time. But if I press Ctrl+S a second time before it’s done uploading, I’ll get an error message at the top that says the file couldn’t be uploaded. It gives me the option to save again, which I do to make the error go away.

Also, I did encounter a little confusion because it apparently has its own integration tools that operate separately from those built into Windows 8. I can see two icons in my system tray in the lower-right corner of the screen. One is the SkyDrive icon and one is a separate one for office called Microsoft Office Upload Center. I’ll cover the Upload Center in the next article.


One handy feature is the ability to share files. My own experience in sharing files on other platforms, such as Google Documents, is usually a rather clumsy approach to collaboration. (Why would two people be working on a document simultaneously?) With SkyDrive, you can similarly share a document with friends or co-workers, and you and other people can use the files simultaneously. Office is, again, fully integrated here, and even provides notifications as you’re typing if the other users changed a section of the document.


SkyDrive isn’t technically brand new, as it has its roots in Windows Live Folders, which came way back in 2007. However, I did encounter a few bugs. At times, even though my connection to the Internet was fine, my files just wouldn’t upload after I saved them and I would see an error message in Word.


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