MasterClass: How To Automate Your Life (Part 3)

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The SkyDrive icon hides a menu that connects to three different options: SkyDrive, Recent documents and Shared with me. Selecting SkyDrive takes the user to their SkyDrive account, Recent documents will list any recent documents, while Shared with me shows any files that have been shared from a user


By default SkyDrive comes with three different folders: Documents, Pictures and Public. The default option is to display the folders using a grid view. There is the option to switch to a list view by tapping the icon in the bottom-left corner. This option allows users to select a folder to share or delete

By default SkyDrive comes with three different folders: Documents, Pictures and Public

By default SkyDrive comes with three different folders: Documents, Pictures and Public

Add files and folders

Add files and folders

The Upload icon (second from the left) lets users upload content from their current device. Tapping the icon will reveal a set of locations (will vary dependent on folder) to upload from eg the camera. Tap to open, tap to select a file and tap Upload to start the process


The bottom-right icon gives access to the Settings menu. Hit this and tap Settings to open. This offers a General overview of the current account, eg account name, your storage (a visual indicator of storage used) and the option to sign out

SkyDrive is Microsoft's cloud solution that offers users 7GB of free storage and the opportunity to sync and share via desktop and device. To use the service effectively users will need a Microsoft Live account and the appropriate version of SkyDrive. Mac and PC users can download a version for the desktop where a SkyDrive folder is automatically created. SkyDrive creates three default folders within the SkyDrive folder. Opening the folder reveals a standard window which allows users to drag and drop and populate with content.

The desktop solution can sync and share with any smartphone or tablet running the SkyDrive app. Android users will need to download the free app from the Play store and sign in to start sharing.

The default setup uses three folders, but the option to add additional folders is an easy task via the app or the desktop.

Two views, grid and list, are easily interchangeable, and selecting a file, or folder, activates a host of options. Share a link to allow others to view or view and edit via email,

Bluetooth or other installed cloud storage services such as Google Drive. Alternatively, a complete file can be exported via email or again via an installed service.

1.    SkyDrive account

1. SkyDrive account

To use the SkyDrive service, a SkyDrive account is needed. This can be set up via https:// Alternatively, to use SkyDrive effectively the appropriate software needs to be installed on a computer. When Installing the software there is the option to set up an account.

2.    Add files

After installing SkyDrive, users can add files via the desktop. A SkyDrive icon will appear in the notification bar/dock; from here, open the SkyDrive folder. This will contain three default folders: Documents, Pictures and Public. Drag files and folders into the chosen folder.

3.    Log in

Log in

Head to the Google Play store and search for the SkyDrive application. Install the app and open it on your device. Now locate the app then tap to activate SkyDrive. Before the app can be used, users will need to sign in. After logging in you are presented with the default folders.

4.    View and delete

To view the contents, simply tap the folder. To change from the grid view to the list view, hit the list icon (bottom-left). Next to each folder is a checkbox. Tap to select a folder and activate the delete and share buttons. Tap the trash icon and confirm to delete a folder.

5.    Share folder

1. Share folder

To start, select the desired folder. Note, only one folder can be selected at a time. Next, tap the share icon. By default, the View only option is selected. To allow for editing, select View and edit and tap OK. Now choose the option to share the link to, for example, Gmail.

6.    Share file

To share a file, open a folder such as Documents and switch to the list view. Next to each file in the list is a checkbox. Now select a file (only one can be selected at a time) and tap the share icon. Choose an option and select a service eg Google Drive. Name the file and select a folder.

7.    New folder

To add a new folder alongside the default folders, tap the folder icon. Name the new folder and press the OK option that is visible. To add a folder within a folder, simply repeat the process. Note, users cannot directly move a file from one folder to another.

8.    Download

To download a file from SkyDrive to the device, first select the desired file by tapping the associated checkbox. Now tap the Download icon and the selected file will be downloaded to the device. This will typically be to an SD card and opened ready to view or edit.

9.    Export

SkyDrive files can be exported to another location using the Export option. Again, select the desired file by tapping the checkbox. Now tap the Export icon; the file will be downloaded before a list of options appear. Select one. Tap the Use by default button to always use the selected option.

Create and manage playlists

Create and manage playlists

Get instant access to your favourite set of songs with the assistance of playlists on your Music app

Storing music on a smartphone can mean hundreds or even thousands of songs to choose from. This offers plenty of choice, but also means more searching.

Everyone has their own favourite set of songs, and even sets of songs for different occasions and moods. This is where playlists make the grade. They allow users to choose a selection of songs and place them in an appropriately named playlist. So, if it's time to chill out and relax, users simply pick a playlist to suit.

The beauty of a playlist is that users can easily edit to suit changing moods and taste. It's a straightforward process and one we've delved deeper into with our annotated image and quick step-by-step below.

Add tracks

To create a new custom playlist, first select your preferred viewing option: Artists, Albums or Songs. To add a complete album, select Artist or Album, tap the button to the right and select Add to playlist. First-time creation will need users to add a name and tap Save

Save playlist

Selecting Playlists will display all the current playlists. To add a new playlist tap Menu>Add a playlist, name the new playlist and tap Save. This method produces an empty playlist. The new folder will have a default icon rather than album art


The Artists option will display an artist’s moniker with all related albums and songs stored within the folder. Tap a folder to view albums, and hit an album to view the songs on the album. Alternatively, tap All songs to view all the selected songs from that artist

Add individual songs

To add individual tracks to a playlist, individual songs need to be displayed. This can be done via Artists, Albums, or Songs. Selecting Songs will display all available songs in alphabetical order. To choose a song, tap the button to the right and select Add to playlist. Choose a playlist and the song is added

More playlists

One option for adding additional playlists is to choose a song, tap the button to the right and select Add to playlist. This will display the currently available playlists and an Add button. Tap Add, name the new playlist and tap Save to complete

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