Microsoft: 200 million SkyDrive users; Windows Live Mesh shuts down Feb. 13th

Earlier this year, Microsoft quietly removed Windows Live Mesh, its file synchronization and remote desktop app, from the list of programs in Windows Essentials 2012, replacing it with SkyDrive. Today, Microsoft confirmed that its support for Windows Live Mesh will end in just a couple of months.

In a post on the official SkyDrive blog, Microsoft said that Live Mesh support will end on February 13th, 2013. The blog added that Microsoft has started to contact the remaining few users of Live Mesh which it says is less than 25,000 users. It added that Microsoft will, " .... provide a set of instructions on how to keep their files in sync and alternative options for some of the features they’re still using."

Windows Live Mesh launched in late 2008 and Microsoft said that at one point it did have a few million users. However, it added that a lot has changed in terms of storing files remotely and that its SkyDrive cloud-based service is, in the company's opinion, a better way to handle those tasks. Microsoft also said in today's blog post that it now has over 200 million users that access SkyDrive accounts.

Live Mesh also allowed users to access their PC remotely, which SkyDrive currently doesn't offer. Microsoft said that its own Remote Desktop Connection, along with the third party LogMeIn Pro software, can handle those kinds of tasks.

Source: SkyDrive blog | Image via Microsoft

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guess my 25gigs are going to stay as un-used as before...

SkyDrive is of no use to me as long as it does not support p2p sync...

Such a shame that they're ditching Mesh. I liked that my favorites persisted across my Windows installs, and that I could RDP to my home desktop without fiddling with the router. Some of the things Microsoft does really baffles me. Why couldn't they just combine the features of the two?

Skydrive is inadequate as a replacement for Mesh without the ability to sync other folders and do PC-to-PC sync without usage of limited online storage or requirement of a VPN.

It's a shame, since Mesh was actually pretty good. Third party it is, I guess...

skydrive doesnt have the features of mesh. Since mesh is no more I wont use skydrive. Guess I just won't use any MS tool like this then since they might just all at once shut it down.

Features that Mesh has that the SkyDrive app currently doesn't:
1) The ability to sync any folder (not just those within your SkyDrive folder)
2) The ability to sync directly from Computer A to Computer B across a lan without having to go via the "cloud" (Computer A -> SkyDrive, SkyDrive -> Computer B)
3) Remote Desktop to any Mesh connected computer (even across NAT's/different networks, etc)

The current SkyDrive app isn't anywhere near as good as Mesh is!! I really hope they bring the above features to SkyDrive before Mesh is untimely killed-off!

GreatMarkO said,
Features that Mesh has that the SkyDrive app currently doesn't:
1) The ability to sync any folder (not just those within your SkyDrive folder)
2) The ability to sync directly from Computer A to Computer B across a lan without having to go via the "cloud" (Computer A -> SkyDrive, SkyDrive -> Computer B)
3) Remote Desktop to any Mesh connected computer (even across NAT's/different networks, etc)

The current SkyDrive app isn't anywhere near as good as Mesh is!! I really hope they bring the above features to SkyDrive before Mesh is untimely killed-off!


Apart for the third option (mesh rd doesn't work on my work proxy) for witch you can find good alternatives like team viewer, 1 and 2 was the reasons i am one of the 25000 that still use mesh (and the pc to pc sync can be done also over internet, not just on lan). And of these two, for me the most important one is the first. I cannot think to put all my files, now also on different partitions and disks, in the same folder

Despite still being in beta, AeroFS does PC-to-PC syncing as its sole purpose. I've found it to be quite good as a replacement as it seems to sync quicker than Mesh does. That said, I've had a couple of instances where files haven't synced as their servers seem to be down, but that's to be expected with a new service in beta. But without Mesh, I'd seriously recommend it for a try.

Thank you. I will have to check this out. I was going to ask in the comments if anyone has an alternative for keeping files in sync between computers without first uploading to a limited storage space server.

Damn, it looks like its a closed beta right now.

So, I'm currently using Mesh to keep a few GB worth of stuff synched between a bunch of my PCs. The synching all happens locally, and no file ever has to leave the confines of my LAN.

Last I checked, with SkyDrive, those GB being synched *will* have to go out on the web. Is this still the case?

_dandy_ said,
Last I checked, with SkyDrive, those GB being synched *will* have to go out on the web. Is this still the case?

Yeah, the SkyDrive app doesn't permit syncing across LAN - everything goes via the cloud!! - Mesh is sooo much better!!!!

_dandy_ said,
So, I'm currently using Mesh to keep a few GB worth of stuff synched between a bunch of my PCs. The synching all happens locally, and no file ever has to leave the confines of my LAN.

Last I checked, with SkyDrive, those GB being synched *will* have to go out on the web. Is this still the case?


If its a LAN why not make a shared folder and for proper 'intergration' into your OS, mount it as a network drive.

Shadowzz said,
If its a LAN why not make a shared folder and for proper 'intergration' into your OS, mount it as a network drive.

Because, among other things, sometimes I bring my laptop elsewhere, and still want access to those files without having to re-download stuff through a WAN connection.

Hard drives are fat and cheap--there's no harm in having multiple copies of items synching across multiple computers.

I think that by the time mesh is ready in o close that we'll have had a few more updates to SkyDrive so that it adds any features its missing still.

GP007 said,
I think that by the time mesh is ready in o close that we'll have had a few more updates to SkyDrive so that it adds any features its missing still.

I certainly hope so, because the current Sky Drive app has a LONG was to go to come anywhere near to the feature set that Mesh currently provides! ....like the ability to sync any folder as well as Remote Desktop without any 3rd party app

I use Skydrive and it ha improved a lot, no questions about it.
Said that Mesh is still way ahead in syncing among devices. Also I hate the fact that using Skydrive all your files and folders must be within the Skydrive folder.....
When Mesh launched it was so ahead of its time but MS never really advertised and explained all its potentials; I guess it was, as usual, some internal wars about teams.

Live Mesh also allowed users to access their PC remotely, which SkyDrive currently doesn't offer.

It does for me, I can click on my computer name and access all my drives and folders on my PC while it's on. It's not a virtual desktop environment, but I can access the files and folders.

devHead said,

It does for me, I can click on my computer name and access all my drives and folders on my PC while it's on. It's not a virtual desktop environment, but I can access the files and folders.

I think they were talking about RDP. But what are you talking about? I thought it was just the cloud files you were accessing?

briangw said,

I think they were talking about RDP. But what are you talking about? I thought it was just the cloud files you were accessing?

He's talking about file fetch, the SkyDrive app lets you access all your drives and files if you let it to. It's like RDP but just for the file explorer. Set up your PC as a trusted device and you can do it easy.

I did like how Live Mesh connected to my computer without me messing with my router like I had to do for Remote Desktop Connection to work. I don't do any of that stuff now and I really like how SkyDrive can connect to my computer and let me access my files that are not synced.

Features: upgrade!!
UI for desktops: subjective downgrade to me too I kind of miss my start button. and glossy transparent finish on my windows.

zeke009 said,
Try the SkyDrive app, the most recent update brings some new features and easier syncing.

Yeah, but no syncing of files outside of your SkyDrive folder (which Mesh can do), no direct syncing over LAN without going via the cloud (which Mesh can do), and no Remote Desktop (which Mesh can do)... so the most recent update may have brought some "new features", but it's no where near as powerful or flexible than Mesh is!!

GreatMarkO said,

Yeah, but no syncing of files outside of your SkyDrive folder (which Mesh can do), no direct syncing over LAN without going via the cloud (which Mesh can do), and no Remote Desktop (which Mesh can do)... so the most recent update may have brought some "new features", but it's no where near as powerful or flexible than Mesh is!!

(Edit: I first thought there was an option to select folders outside SkyDrive, but that isn't the case.)

I don't think there's a full Remote Desktop feature (you can Always use the Windows default one) but you can access all your PC files via the SkyDrive site (after filling in a code received on your mobile).

I doubt it's coming back, they sent out emails to Mesh users with affiliate links in them selling LogMeIn Pro