Dropbox is the glue that holds my digital life together. As such it’s configuration took me a while to get right. I have two of my critical applications installed to my Dropbox so they follow me wherever I go, KeePass and Zotero. Further I set my Windows desktops and “My Documents” to sync with Dropbox so they follow me everywhere.
Quick Step-By-Step Guide
- Place dropbox in the same location on all your computers, it makes things simpler. I chose “C:\Dropbox”
- Inside your Dropbox make three folders – “Programs”, “My Documents”, and “Desktop”
- On each of your computers point your Desktop and My Documents folders to the new dropbox folders. Here is a quick guide on how to do this.
- In “Programs” make three folders: “Zotero”, “KeePass”, and “Scripts”
- Download and unzip KeePass to its respective folder.
- Install Zotero. Go to Tools > Options > Advanced > Data Directory Location; Set this to your “Zotero” Dropbox folder. (Now all your articles and passwords will be with you wherever you go!)
- In “Scripts” place the following two files (make sure the paths are applicable to you.)
@echo off ping -n 120 localhost > nul start "Zotero" "C:\Program Files (x86)\Zotero Standalone\zotero.exe"
@echo off ping -n 100 localhost > nul start "KeePass" "C:\Dropbox\Programs\KeePass\Application Files\KeePass.exe"
- In your startup folder place the following two files
Set oShell = CreateObject ("Wscript.Shell") Dim strArgs strArgs = "cmd /c C:\Dropbox\Programs\Startup\zotero.bat" oShell.Run strArgs, 0, false
Set oShell = CreateObject ("Wscript.Shell") Dim strArgs strArgs = "cmd /c C:\Dropbox\Programs\Startup\keepass.bat" oShell.Run strArgs, 0, false
- This will delay Keepass’ and Zotero’s starting until dropbox has a chance to finish syncing. You may have to increase the ping time depending on the speed of your internet connection.
Thats it! You now have a literature repository and password manager which follow you everywhere, without you even thinking about them. Further everything you save to your desktop will automatically appear on all your computer’s desktops. A very simple way to transition from work in lab to work at home.