How to Install and Use Briefcase

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Article ID: 142574 - View products that this article applies to.
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SUMMARY

This article describes how to install and use the Briefcase tool.

MORE INFORMATION

Briefcase helps keep your files updated when you use two computers by automatically synchronizing multiple copies of individual files. For example, if you use a desktop computer at home, and a laptop computer on the road, you can use Briefcase to synchronize the files that you work with both at home and on the road. Because Briefcase automatically keeps track of the relationships between multiple copies of a single file, you do not need to remember where each copy of a file is located, or which copy of the file you modified most recently.

Installing Briefcase

The Windows 95 Setup program automatically installs Briefcase if you choose the Portable Setup option, or if you choose the Custom Setup option and specify that Briefcase should be installed. If you do not install Briefcase during Setup and decide later that you want it, you must reinstall Windows 95.

Note that if you are using Windows 95 OEM Service Release 2 (OSR2) or later, it is not necessary to reinstall Windows 95 to install Briefcase after Setup. To install Briefcase, follow these steps:
  1. Click Start, point to Settings, click Control Panel, and then double- click Add/Remove Programs.
  2. Click the Windows Setup tab, click Accessories, and then click Details.
  3. Click the Briefcase checkbox to select it, click OK, and then click OK again.
NOTE: If you remove the Briefcase icon from the desktop, use the right mouse button to click the desktop, point to New, and then click Briefcase to create a new Briefcase icon.

Using Briefcase to Keep Files Synchronized

Keeping Files Synchronized Using a Floppy Disk:
  1. Insert a disk into a floppy disk drive in your primary computer.
  2. Copy the files that you want to work with to Briefcase. You can also copy a folder to Briefcase, if you want to work with all the files in that folder. To copy files or folders to Briefcase, you can drag the files or folders to the My Briefcase icon on the desktop.
  3. Move Briefcase to the floppy disk.
  4. Insert the disk containing Briefcase into a floppy disk drive in your secondary computer, and then edit the files in Briefcase.
  5. When you are ready to synchronize the files, insert the disk containing Briefcase into a disk drive in your primary computer, and then double- click the My Briefcase icon on the floppy disk.
  6. To update all the files in Briefcase, click Briefcase, and then click Update All. To update only certain files, click the files you want to update, click Briefcase, and then click Update Selection.
NOTE: You can also use the following method to keep files synchronized using a floppy disk. Because the above method uses a single Briefcase and maintains fewer copies of the files you want to work with, it is preferred. However, the following method does not require you to edit files stored on a floppy disk and may be faster.
  1. Insert a disk into a floppy disk drive in your primary computer.
  2. Move the files that you want to work with from the hard disk to the floppy disk, or create new files on the floppy disk. You can also move a folder to the floppy disk, if you want to work with all the files in that folder.
  3. Copy the files that you want to work with from the floppy disk to the Briefcase on your primary computer. You can also copy a folder to Briefcase, if you want to work with all the files in that folder. To copy files or folders to Briefcase, you can drag the files or folders to the My Briefcase icon on the desktop.
  4. Insert the disk containing the files you want to work with into a floppy disk drive in your secondary computer, and then copy the files from the floppy disk to the Briefcase on your secondary computer.
  5. Edit the files in Briefcase, and then synchronize the files. To update all the files in Briefcase, click Briefcase, and then click Update All. To update only certain files, click the files you want to update, click Briefcase, and then click Update Selection.
  6. Insert the disk containing the files you want to work with into a floppy disk drive in your primary computer, and then synchronize the files.
Keeping Files Synchronized on Connected Computers:
  1. On your secondary computer, copy the files that you want to work with from your primary computer to Briefcase. To copy the files from your primary computer, you must first share the folders that contain those files. You can also copy shared folders to Briefcase, if you want to work with all the files in that folder. To copy files or folders to Briefcase, you can drag the files or folders to the My Briefcase icon on the desktop.
  2. Edit the files in Briefcase on your secondary computer. The computers do not need to be connected while you are editing the files.
  3. When you are ready to synchronize the files, connect the two computers, and then double-click the My Briefcase icon on your secondary computer.
  4. To update all the files in Briefcase, click Briefcase, and then click Update All. To update only certain files, click the files you want to update, click Briefcase, and then click Update Selection.

Helpful Tips

  • When you synchronize files using a floppy disk, do not copy Briefcase to the floppy disk. When you copy Briefcase to the floppy disk instead of moving it, you create multiple copies of Briefcase. If you create multiple copies of Briefcase, you may not know which copy of Briefcase to use when you want to synchronize your files.
  • When you synchronize files using a floppy disk, the total size of all the files cannot be greater than 1.44 MB. When you move a Briefcase that is larger than 1.44 MB to floppy disks, the files that are copied to the second and subsequent disks are not maintained as belonging to the Briefcase on the first disk. For more information about this problem, please see the following article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
    130076 Briefcase Cannot Contain More Than 1.44 MB
  • When you are editing the files from Briefcase on your secondary computer, do not move the files out of Briefcase. If you move a file out of Briefcase and then edit the file, the file will not be properly updated when you attempt to synchronize the files in Briefcase.
  • After you copy files to Briefcase, do not move the original files on the primary computer. Briefcase keeps track of the original location of all the files that you copy to Briefcase, but it is not able to track the files if you move them to a different location. Once you move a file on the primary computer, the file is no longer associated with the copy of the file in Briefcase, even if you move the file back to its original location.

    If this problem occurs and Briefcase is unable to synchronize the files, you may be able to manually synchronize the files instead. To do so, you must first decide if you want to use the original file, or the copy of the file in Briefcase. If you want to use the original file, you can synchronize the files by deleting the copy of the file in Briefcase, and then copying the original file to Briefcase. If you want to use the copy of the file in Briefcase, move the file from Briefcase to a new location on your hard disk, and then copy the file to Briefcase.

REFERENCES

For additional information about using Briefcase, please see chapter 28 of the Microsoft Windows 95 Resource Kit or chapter 19 in the Microsoft Windows 98 Resource Kit.

This chapter discusses the use of Briefcase, as well as the installation and configuration of the various peripherals available for use with Windows and Briefcase. To get help, double-click the Briefcase icon on the desktop and follow the instructions. For more detailed instructions, click Help in the Briefcase window, click the Search tab, type briefcase, and then click Display for the appropriate topic or double-click the appropriate item.

Or, view the following Help topics in Windows:
  • Accessories: Using Briefcase to keep documents up-to-date
  • Creating a Briefcase on the desktop
  • Keeping files synchronized using a floppy disk
  • Synchronizing files on connected computers
  • Checking the status of a file or folder in Briefcase
  • Separating Briefcase files from the originals

Properties

Article ID: 142574 - Last Review: January 19, 2007 - Revision: 1.2
APPLIES TO
  • Microsoft Windows 95
  • Microsoft Windows 98 Standard Edition
Keywords: 
kbhowto KB142574

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