CodeTwo has launched what it calls a “new kind” of file sharing. In the updated version 5 of its Public Folders product, users can share Outlook items and any Windows-based file across a local network or through the Net, without the use of external servers.

Shareable Outlook files include calendars, meetings, contacts, distribution groups, address books, posts, journals, tasks, notes, email and Windows files. A mixed Outlook environment, where there are different versions of that Microsoft software, is supported. Custom Outlook forms and views can also be synchronized using CodeTwo Public Folders so that all users have identical workflows.

Files Stored on PCs

On its website, the company noted that “lots of people are averse to keeping their data in the cloud -- that’s why we store your files on your PCs only.” During synchronization, CodeTwo said, only data is transferred and it’s encrypted. Users can determine if sharing will be done only through the local network, or if it will be allowed through the Internet as well.

CodeTwo, a developer of MS Exchange Server and Outlook-based software solutions, said that this “direct link” approach is not only an easier, faster and safer way to share and sync files, but it does not involve the security issues of non-company clouds because it only uses local computers -- even when shared over the Internet.

In contrast to other, cloud-based file sharing services, users create what the company describes as a “sort of personal cloud that is available only to you and can never be intercepted and read” by anyone besides you and your company colleagues.

Work Offline or Online

Users can work on folders whether or not there’s an Internet connection, since they are stored on local computers. When connectivity is re-established, all changes are updated and re-synched. An administrative panel allows access rights, backups and licensing to be managed, and removed items to be restored.

Public Folders 5’s client app has native password authentication, and users can also employ their Active Directory login.  

Version 5 is compatible with the company’s CodeTwo Sync for iCloud, so that Outlook shared folders can be kept in sync with devices running Apple’s iOS. It also allows users to create and share public folders that have similar functionality to those on Microsoft’s Exchange Server.