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Mac OS X 10.8 Mountain Lion Developer Preview 4

Mountain Lion, a.k.a. OS X 10.8, marries the Apple desktop operating system to iOS features that previously were found only on the iPhone and iPad. Among them: Messages, Notifications, Reminders, a Game Center, and better integration with iCloud. It's not a revolutionary upgrade to the desktop OS, but it should please Mac enterprise users.

iCloud integration

Mountain Lion is the first edition of OS X that includes built-in iCloud integration. (Yes, Lion has it, but it was introduced in an update.) With Mountain Lion, Apple gives you access to cloud-based sync services for Notes, Reminders, and Messages between your Mac and your iDevice. Documents and their changes also will sync back and forth between your Mac and iDevice.

iCloud in Mountain Lion also includes a new feature called Document Library. Aside from giving you access to the latest revision of any document created with an iCloud-supported app, Document Library lets you create folders by dragging one document on top of another, as you do with shortcuts on an iDevice home page. Document Library also supports file sharing through Mail, Messages, and AirDrop.

Also, iCloud's Preference Pane now displays when you first start up the OS, allowing you to sign in with your Apple ID so that iCloud services are configured and available as soon as you start using Mountain Lion.

iCloud integration is improved in Mountain Lion. For one thing, you now get to choose which apps share information through iCloud.

The iCloud Back to My Mac and Find My Mac services weren't available at review time.

Notes can store data in iCloud. You can open iCloud Settings from Notes to get access to the preference pane that contains all the options. Currently, however, you can't use your Apple ID as your iCloud email address, which makes things a bit difficult.

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