Where have I heard before? Can't quite put my finger on it.
Google is killing its “Drive” sync 'n' share file locker in two ways. For users of Google's G Suite customers, death will come in the form of a new desktop application called “Drive File Stream” that does pretty much everything Drive does now, but which Google says “allows you to quickly access all of your Google Drive files …
So what's in store for us non gsuite google drive users?
Is it still 15GB free usage?
Does backup and sync have new better features?
I'm just learning about this now, would be good for el reg to have a proper right up about it.
I'm going to have to google it now.
Now googled, I realise this article is like an advert selling the change. There will be no simple folder you dump stuff in, now you tell it which folders to sync which I guess are then viewable in the cloud, no idea how or if it copies that data to your other machine, how will it cope if the parent of the source folder does not exist on your other machine?
This will have big ramifications for some. I have scanners that automatically save to google drive, how will this work in future?
I transitioned from GDrive to Yandex about 6 months ago. No complaints - and the Windows sync app is less of a CPU hog.
My main motivation was that I'm a lot happier with the SVR/FSB snooping my files than the NSA/FBI, but getting 42Gb free for life was a bonus (that's not standard: 10Gb is the basic free quota, but they run various promotions from time to time which is how I got the additional 32Gb). Oh, and I'm not Russian - just like I wasn't American when I used Google.
"... getting 42Gb free for life was a bonus"
When it comes to free stuff, "life" can have many different definitions:
(1) What they imply: Your life. Yeah, right ;
(2) What they really mean: Meh, we'll can it when we can't be bothered any more ;
(3) If you're really lucky: As long as we keep the VC cash rolling in.
Mind you, paying for a service doesn't always mean you get treated any better. See the publication date on that article ? THAT's the day Nuance announced that he Paperport Anywhere service was shutting down - and most PaperPort users only found out by e-mail the following day.
That's right kids, most folks got less than two weeks' notice to find a new cloud provider and move their stuff - no alternative service, no backup plan, nothing. "We'd like to help you, but we're a bit tired right now" is the most charitable way I could describe that situation.
imagine going off for two weeks holiday on Friday the 15th, and coming back to that on Monday March 4th - all your docs in the cloud have evaporated, with no hope of recovery because the storage has already been re-purposed for another customer.
Enjoy the freebies while you can, but always make sure you've got a Plan "B" in case someone pulls the plug. At the end of the day, you're just a guest on someone else's computer.
Obviously "life" is a flexible concept in this area, I was using the term in the same sense that competitors (OneDrive, DropBox et. al.) do. Yandex have a better record than Google when it comes to abrupt product/service discontinuation though.
I maintain a NextCloud instance mirrored to local NAS for things I'm really concerned about (I don't use it for everything because going above 20Gb SSD on that server would double the cost of the VM).
When is the last time the Russian government dragged British citizens through the courts using an outrageously unbalanced extradition treaty or else grabbed a British security researcher at an airport charged with notionally breaking Russian law from his home in the UK? That's right. Never. I'm damn sure FSB snooping is a big improvement.
You still have the original "Google Drive" capability that you had before, so that shoudn't be a problem for you.
The only new feature is the ability to select random folders on your computer to have backed up on your Google storage space - not as part of Drive, but as a traditional backup feature. (Some versioning available, but I think the restore of older versions is from the web interface only.)
Will be handy for some customers since Code42 has decided to murder CrashPlan for residential users.
"Blotto" complains:There will be no simple folder you dump stuff in, now you tell it which folders to sync which I guess are then viewable in the cloud, no idea how or if it copies that data to your other machine, how will it cope...What is it that you don't get, and how can you not get it?
If you're upset that you'll have to specify which directories to back up and want to keep the simplicity of a "simple folder you dump stuff in"... What's to stop you from not specifying any other folders, and keep dumping stuff in that single one?
Just what everyone needs - more confusion on exactly where the data lives and when and what sort of data fits today's valid file type sieve.
Or is this an admission that the great cloudy thing isn't working out in practice the way that the marketing people thought it would, since little details like the technicalities make it something quite different.
Next up - more fun trying to explain to users where their data is at any given time and why its not where they thought they put it.
"Next up - more fun trying to explain to users where their data is at any given time and why its not where they thought they put it."
... perhaps they need to start running Silicon Valley style consumer education classes to expalin to uses why they still have all their photos but aren't using any storage on their phones.
Gosh, whatever do you mean? All us Silicon Valley developers have permanent gigabit fiber to the desktop and unlimited 4G for our phones, therefore everyone has the same experience as us.
In our minds the only places with poor connectivity exist in our nightmares.
Up vote. It's abundantly obvious that far too many developers have utterly no real world life experience, which is why so many products are only usable in specific ideal circumstances.
For instance, any service that assumes unlimited data on mobile is useless to much of Canada because of the incredibly stingy and expensive data allowances.
Firstly: it looks as if the recently-added auto folder-backup feature is staying, which I'm happy about as that's actually useful...
I'm still a bit confused from this, over whether Google Drive (as in "your drive in the 'cloud'") is staying available. For me, this matters, as I have an Asus Chromebit CS10 (a "stick PC" running Chrome OS), and am eyeing up an Asus Chromebook Flip.
Chrome OS' file storage is focused on integration with Google Drive (yes, COS can mount local mass-storage devices and certain other network filesystems, but GD is the primary file-storage location), so I don't quite see how Google could phase out the files/folders "area" of GD without a remodelling of Chrome OS' file-management interface. Hopefully, that's not what they're looking to do.
I tend to use the phrase "permanent beta" for Google services.
Remember Google Wave ? I remember lots of folks raving about that when it came out - the product Google loved SO much, they couldn't even be bothered to spell-check the closedown notice...
I've still got the e-mail that says "Google Wage is closing down".
"Google are forever creating things, letting people rely on them and then fucking them over."
If only I could upvote this a million times.
The galling thing is that Google doesn't even appear to have the decency to dump its abandoned apps that people actually used onto GitHub or the like.
For example "My Tracks" was something I used to use while walking around large boot sales held in towns ("vide grenier" if you know anything of France). It used to be useful for overlaying a chart of where I've been on top of the road layout with my current position so I could tell easily where I have and haven't been (in the spaghetti road systems in the middle of towns, this sort of thing is useful). But no, Google went and killed it off in favour of "Google Fit", as if the only reason somebody might want to track their progress is in order to count calories. Thanks a lot. I'm now using Ilya Bogdanovich's Geo Tracker which does exactly what I wanted.
I expect Google Goggles to be killed off next. It was a good idea, and there's such interactivity that could be built into a program such as that (beyond it being "a quick way to read QR codes"), but it doesn't work any more on modern devices (Samsung S7, Android 7) and looking at the app info, it was last updated on the 28th of May 2014. I'm guessing this should now be thought of as pre-slaughtered abandonware...?
"allows you to quickly access all of your Google Drive files on demand, directly from your computer, meaning you use almost none of your hard drive space and spend less time waiting for files to sync."
1) hard drive space is cheap
2) For many people upload and download speed for cloud connections is not instant (no fibre, I get about 800kbps upload, 10Mbps down). Fine for a small file on a fast connection, but... Just been downloading 750MB of images from Dropbox that a client wants processing. It was not instant. Uploading them again will take a couple of hours. I'll stick to working locally and keeping backups.
Hard drive space isn't cheap everywhere - some small laptops (or tablets, of phones) may have far smaller disks than big desktop systems. Being able to select what to "pin" locally and what to access on demand is useful.
Download/upload speeds are an issue, but as long as you have a choice of what is cached locally, it's not really a big issue.
It's interesting that while MS with One Drive is still messing with "placeholders", Google implements the same feature.
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