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External (Non Windows) access plus local cache questions


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Hi !

 

I am currently looking for a way to get rid of my local storage since I am frequently traveling and finding myself in situations where access to my storage would have been great. So I have been looking at ways to sync and store all of my storage securely in the cloud while having convenient access to it while on the road. On my quest to finding the perfect solution I came across Clouddrive. While technically it seems to be a very very powerful solution, I am a bit skeptical of the Windows only solution so here are a few questions if I may ....

 

- I do understand that access from outside of Windows will be difficult due to the nature of the product. However, I am still wondering if you guys are planning some workaround. Imagine a road warrior loosing his notebook in the middle of nowhere and needing access to some of his cloud storage files. Now with cloud storage being accessible from anywhere, basically it would be stupid to limit myself to a clouddrive that I cannot access from anywhere, thereby limiting my options to access the data to my PC basically.

 

So my question would be ... could it technically be possible for you to develop some sort of webservice that could, in the future, allow us to log in from any internet cafe securely, mount the relevant drive, unlock the encryption and download some files from the drive? Of course, this could be even more useful if there was an Android/iOS app available that could access that webservice. Also at least through that workaround MacOSX or Linux users could access their storage in some way. 

 

- Second question would be about areas without internet access. I understand that Clouddrive comes with a very powerful prefetcher and cache. Does that mean (or will it be possible at some point in the future)  that I can select a folder on my cloud drive to permanently or temporarily keep in the local cache so that I can access files in my clouddrive even if I am traveling to an area without internet access?

 

Last but not least I am a bit disappointed that Clouddrive doesnt seem to work well with Amazon Cloud Drive so far. (I did read that long thread about the subject)  I just recently started my subscription with amazon so I hope the issues can be resolved soon. I guess in the meantime I will just try out the beta with my very limited Google or Onedrive cloud. However, they wont be able to hold all of my local storage so the only solution I would be interested in would be one that works reliably with ACD ;)

 

Thanks for listening!

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Unfortunately, Windows only for the foreseeable future. (though, you could run VMs)

 

 

As for a web service, I believe that Alex (the Developer) wanted to do that eventually, but I'm not sure, and I'm not sure when we'd be able to get to that. 

 

That said, something like a colocated server, or a VM (such as through Microsoft Azure) could be used to run StableBit CloudDrive, and you could then use a VPN or web server with WebDAV enabled to access the content remotely.  That may be a good option for you in the meanwhile, and may solve some of the other issues you've mentioned. 

 

Though I absolutely understand that this really isn't a cheap solution. 

 

 

 

As for when you wouldn't have internet access... that shouldn't be a huge issue.  Any new data would remain in the cache, awaiting to be uploaded as soon as you have internet access. 

As for reads, this would be more problematic.  Since you couldn't download new data, that means that anything that is not cached would be completely inaccessible. 

 

However, as you've mentioned, the cache can be very good about "fixing this". By default. the software tried to pin the disk and NTFS metadata, and all of the directory entries on the file system. This should help prevent issues, but t hat also depends on the cache size.

 

If you're going to be experiencing "network outages" a lot, then you will be much better off using as large of a cache size as you can.  And if you could devote a drive to it, that maybe the best option here. (if this is for a laptop, and it has an optical drive, there are "trays" that let you replace the entire optical drive with a HDD caddy). 

 

 

 

 

As for Amazon Cloud Drive, we haven't really tested, but a number of users have reported that the internal beta builds (1.0.0.541) have significantly improved the performance with Amazon Cloud Drive.  

But we agree, we really do want it to work well and reliably with Amazon Cloud Drive, as it would definitely help us, but it would also help Amazon (it's in their best interest, as well as ours). 

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Hi Christopher,

 

thanks for the answers. As for question 1 I hope the developers will eventually create a webservice of some sort if this is technically possible. The idea with the virtual server would be a workaround but then I am asking myself why I am going with a dedicated drive at all, i could just save my files in the cloud using (for instance) boxcryptor, which does have Android/iOS apps available to mount the encrypted containers from anywhere.

 

As for the second question, you didnt really get the point I think. I was asking if it was possible to make sure a certain folder on the cloud drive is in the local cache. For instance, I need a certain set of files and I know I wont have internet access where I am going so I right click on the folder on the cloud drive select something like "Cache locally" and then all the files in the folder will be cached locally. From your description, the cache seems to be more or less automatic which is fine for regular use but there should be a manual option to put/release specific folders into/from the cache for situations where you want to make sure that a certain set of files is definitely always available locally.

 

As for ACD: good to read there is progress!

 

Thanks!

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Hi Christopher,

 

thanks for the answers. As for question 1 I hope the developers will eventually create a webservice of some sort if this is technically possible. The idea with the virtual server would be a workaround but then I am asking myself why I am going with a dedicated drive at all, i could just save my files in the cloud using (for instance) boxcryptor, which does have Android/iOS apps available to mount the encrypted containers from anywhere.

 

As for the second question, you didnt really get the point I think. I was asking if it was possible to make sure a certain folder on the cloud drive is in the local cache. For instance, I need a certain set of files and I know I wont have internet access where I am going so I right click on the folder on the cloud drive select something like "Cache locally" and then all the files in the folder will be cached locally. From your description, the cache seems to be more or less automatic which is fine for regular use but there should be a manual option to put/release specific folders into/from the cache for situations where you want to make sure that a certain set of files is definitely always available locally.

 

As for ACD: good to read there is progress!

 

Thanks!

 

I apologize as I did kind of skim.

 

As for being able to specify what content to get cached is a potential feature for the future.  

Though... while this sounds like a very simple prospect, it is very complicated.  First, we have to identify what files/folders should be "pinned" to the cache. This means that we need to be able to figure out where on the disk this data is located. And THEN we have to figure out what chunks are being used by these disk locations. 

 

That means that we need to be able to read the file system (NTFS, ReFS, etc). And that means we need to be able to parse the file system (NTFS isn't' a problem, but dynamic disks get complicated, and ReFS is much more complicated as well) It also gets more complicated if the disk is being encrypted (but stuff such as bitlocker, etc).  

 

So this isn't a simple feature to implement. We do some of this for folders, but that's a lot simpler (as essentially we mostly need to read the MFT for NTFS).

https://stablebit.com/Admin/IssueAnalysis/25996

 

 

And yes, the cache is fairly "automatic". However, it is also learning. Which means that more commonly used files are kept in cache over less commonly used files. So this may solve the some of this. 

 

As for Amazon Cloud Drive, the progress was incidental, actually. As in not directly related to issues with the provider but changes made due to performance and stability issues/testing.  But either way, yes, it is nice. 

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