Using Dropbox to share structured knowledge with MindManager

Do you have a requirement which goes something like this:

  1. You want to share information with a closed group of people
  2. It’s less than 2GB of files but this could grow with the size of the group
  3. They need to be able to access it on and off line.
  4. Anyone in the group can add files to the store but you will look after the indexing
  5. Only some members of the group use MindManager

Had you thought about using Dropbox with MindManager’s web export?

Here is how:

  1. Get a Dropbox account, create and share two folders with the group e.g.
    1. Web site
    2. New files
      You will have to invite them and all that malarky but this will give you extra storage.  The folders will appear in your My Documents folder in the  My Dropbox folder.
  2. Create a map which links to all the files you want to share with the group.
    Do not use multiple hyperlinks, they are not supported in the web exports.
  3. Export the map using the web export. If all the text and explanations is in topic text you just need the Clickable Image export, if you add topic notes use the Static Outline or Dynamic Templates or Simple Outline or One Page.
  4. Export the map to the Dropbox folder web site. I suggest changing the name of the Root export filename in Customise > Advanced settings to something relevant.  A mini web site will be created with a folder called LinkedDocuments with all the linked files in it. Your original documents will remain where they where, these are copies by default. Other folders are created for the more sophisticated web exports to support the styles, images etc. used in the export.
  5. Give the group the link to the root export file and the web site will appear.
    e.g test-site 
    I have saved the web export to the Public Folder in Dropbox.
  6. Ask the group to add new files to the New files folder.
  7. Link the new files to the map and re-export.
Note: You cannot share local files via the PDF Viewer and Flash export. If you just have hyperlinks to web pages on the map then you could also store them in Dropbox and save updated versions.

Obviously there are many other file management systems out there but this may be enough for your needs.  Similar processes may be possible with Microsoft’s Skydrive and Google sites.

Could you use this?

About Andrew Wilcox

Andrew is an experienced user of MindManager who shares his knowledge and advice for free here. And provides commercial training and consulting on how to exploit MindManager and other mind mapping software applications in business, organisations and for individuals at Cabre For more information about Andrew please visit his Google + profile.

Tags: , ,

3 Responses to “Using Dropbox to share structured knowledge with MindManager”

  1. Andrew,
    This is a great suggestion. The problem that many of our customers have is to share mindmaps with non-MindManager users. The PDF player or Connect is not always sufficient, because they want to link to files, which is not supported.
    If they don’t have an own environment on which they can place the webexportfiles, then a solution as Dropbox is a great alternative.

  2. Andrew Wilcox says:

    Thanks Esther, It was prompted by a question in another forum about setting up a simple and free web site for a family group to share files.

    Dropbox manages who sees the content which is not normally the function of a free website.
    Because Dropbox is replicating on all the users devices it works offline and is effectively backed up. (This does stop someone with the rights deleting a file(s) from everyone’s device.)

    For many years you have been able to do something similar by setting up webdav folders on your PC or Mac. MindManager can export directly to them and bypass the use of an FTP client for transferring files to your web server.


  3. Andrew Wilcox says:

    The above works providing you access the files via File Explorer on a Windows PC and presumably the equivalent on Mac or Linux. It doesn’t work via the Dropbox web browser interface or the iOS app in my experience.

Leave a Reply