Liferay Sync is a new product coming from Liferay later this year. With Sync, you designate a folder on your PC as the Sync folder. You also configure a connection to your Liferay server and document library.
When you are done, any file deposited into that folder on your desktop will be uploaded automatically to the corresponding location in Liferay. In addition, as you edit that file and save changes, Sync will upload those changes to Liferay for you. This is certainly an easier way to upload documents than through a browser, which is Liferay’s goal.
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The name Sync implies that keeping the file updated is a two way process and, indeed, it is. Other users can sync to the same library on Liferay and their changes get downloaded to your folder automatically.
What about collisions when two people are editing the same document? Unfortunately, Sync does not offer any locking or merging capabilities, so changes are handled on a last-in wins model. However, Liferay does include a versioning/history feature, so you will have a history of the various versions of the document.
Sync runs on Windows PC and Mac iOS. There is also a version for mobile devices that let you access the documents for viewing.
Here are some enhancements I’d like to see to Sync in the future:
- Option to upload only to Liferay. First, many companies are trying to get files off user PC and up to the document repository, so pulling them down can be counter productive. Second, imagine a folder that contains 100 files. Every user who Syncs to that library is going to a copy of all 100 files. Maybe I only want to sync a couple of those files.
- Make the Liferay repository accessible through WebDav too. This way, I can link to the library as a folder on my PC without have copies of the files locally.
- Integrate with email so when I send an attachment, Sync could upload the attachment to Liferay and substitute a link in my email. This is something IBM Quickr does that saves a lot of mail systems from being overloaded with file attachments.