If you have more than one Windows PC then keeping them in sync can be a pain, however, with Windows 8 the process of making sure that your PCs are always in step with one another has been radically streamlined and simplified. So much so, that you can keep your computers almost identical all the time with zero effort.

With previous versions of Windows keeping two machines running identically was lots of work and constant tinkering. If you changed the desktop on your laptop at home and wanted it to match your work PC then the only way to do this efficiently was to manually make the changes yourself.

The same was true of modifications to other items like the taskbar and account picture. However, it’s not just settings data that you can have synced across all your devices as you can now even have your documents available on every machine you use.

Data syncing is managed through your Microsoft account and SkyDrive, you may already have a Microsoft account they were previously called Windows Live accounts. When you setup a Windows 8 PC you are asked to enter your Windows account so you should create one here if you don’t already have one.

Once you’ve done this you can get started on syncing your devices. On the start screen type PC Settings and then in the Settings results click on Use similar settings on all the PCs you use. This will open the sync options for everything that Windows 8 can keep aligned across devices.

To keep files and folders the same on multiple machines you should download SkyDrive – this will give you 7GB of space for free that you can save anything to and then sync them across your machines, even Macs. SkyDrive will be added to the File Explorer and anything you copy to the SkyDrive location will be available on any machine you login to through a web browser or SkyDrive application on that PC.

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