ExpanDrive v6.2 is out for macOS and Windows. It add support for macOS 10.14 as well as provides a number of performance improvement an bug fixes for both Mac and Windows. You can get it via the auto updater or directly from our front page.
Amazon S3 is Amazon’s cloud storage offering. It was the the service that of what is now Amazon Web Services, originally launched in 2009. S3 is unlike Dropbox or other consume-oriented cloud storage services in that it is primarily driven by an API. There is a fairly basic web interface, but other than that the only way to get data in and out of it is via the API. ExpanDrive is an S3 Client for macOS and Windows that turns Amazon S3 into a fast network drive. Give it a try – ExpanDrive runs on macOS 10.9 up through High Sierra 10.13 as well as Windows 7, Windows 10 and Windows server. ExpanDrive also works great in RDP/Terminal services environments.
Mount S3 as a Network Drive with ExpanDrive
ExpanDrive supports a wide variety of cloud storage backends via their API, abstracting away the details of the the Amazon S3 API so you can access your files directly from Finder or Explorer. You can even save to S3 directly from applications like Photoshop or Microsoft Office. ExpanDrive turns S3 into an infinite sized external online hard drive and also lets you browse and access your existing datasets with ease.
Creating a virtual online harddrive with Amazon S3
Amazon provides a simple guide to get started. You’ll need an AWS account as well as a bucket. From there, you’ll want to get your API keys to authenticate with ExpanDrive. My good friend Stefan at Haystack Software has a nice guide on how to get the keys. You can also use an IAM user with ExpanDrive.
ExpanDrive v6.1.15 is out which adds an updated icon overlay shell extension for Windows that fixes an issue on some systems where ephemeral TCP ports could become temporarily exhausted. The shell extension is also a good bit faster and should improve the speed of browsing in Explorer. You can get this update from our download page or via the auto-updater. Detailed release notes are available on our support page.
Map Google Drive as a Drive Letter in Windows or Mac
Google Drive is the file storage area for GSuite that comes with 15GB of free online storage. The extended storage plans have huge amounts of capacity. ExpanDrive is a special type of Google Drive client that lets you map Google Drive or Team Drive as a network drive on Windows or macOS or Windows. ExpanDrive lets you map the root of your Google Drive or an individual Team Drive on Windows 7 through Windows 10 as well as Windows server and macOS 10.9 and newer. You can even connect multiple Google Drive accounts at the same time.
The great thing about ExpanDrive and Google Drive is you can access your entire account without taking up any disk space or syncing data back and forth. What good is a 10TB account if your only supported mechanism move data is via sync. Jason Snell recently wrote a piece at Six Colors called the Dropbox Terabyte Conundrum about this same problem with Dropbox’s new 1TB plan. Using Sync to move your data means you need to pick a folder that mirrors your Drive account and then keep a copy of all that data on your machine. So unless your laptop have a 10TB Drobo or Synology NAS attached to it, then you can’t really DO much with a 10TB Google Drive account. Unless you have ExpanDrive.
ExpanDrive lets you actually mount your Google Drive account as a virtual drive, just like a USB Drive, on Mac or Windows. You can browse and access your Drive account without needing to first sync your files, which takes up time and space on your laptop. Just access what you need, when you need it, from within any app like Finder, Windows Explorer, Microsoft Word, Photoshop, or whatever you use. Everything is safely in the cloud but not taking up space on your computer. Isn’t that the point of cloud storage anyways?
Box.com, like most big online storage providers, provides a Sync client for your desktop PC or Mac. The Box sync client has long been plagued with problems and has had a reputation of being notoriously slow and buggy. Especially on the Mac. Box Sync 4 improves things a bit, but it still has the same problems any syncing app has. The best solution is to Map or Mount Box as a Network Drive, with ExpanDrive. Connect to your Box account just like a USB Drive. Browse the account in any application, like Word, Powerpoint, Photoshop – whatever. View and managed all your files directly from within Finder on the Mac or Explorer.
Problems with Sync – It needs lots of hard drive space
To use Box Sync you first have to download all the data to your machine – which takes a long time and can take a lot of storage. If you’re running a MacBook Air or an notebook with a 128GB SSD it’s going to pretty hard to use your company’s 500GB Box account. Forget trying to store lots of media and assets with Box sync. What you really want is to offload that data to the cloud, but still be able to get at it when you need it. That’s what a network drive like ExpanDrive is perfect for. The files are still there, but they are just stored directly on Box.
Sync is less Secure
Box has a great security model – you can provide fine grained control to your users. When employees leave, you can simply revoke their permissions. However, using Box Sync that model breaks down a bit. Everybody has a copy of the data sitting on their laptop. If the machine is lost or stolen the files remain there for the taking. If an employee runs off, they can still access all the data they had before since it is just sitting in a folder on their computer.
Connect Box as a Network Drive with ExpanDrive
ExpanDrive makes managing your Box account as seamless as using a USB Drive. It also improves the Box security model – ExpanDrive accesses everything on demand. Here is a video to help get a better idea of what ExpanDrive does and how it works.
Google’s Backup and Sync client and File Stream client are only able to connect to a single Drive account, which makes sense given that it is what most people need. However, you might want to have desktop access on Mac or Windows to multiple GSuite accounts if you are part of multiple organizations or if you want to segment the content you have access to into nice logical volumes. A great way to connect to multiple Google Drive accounts is to use ExpanDrive which connects to the Google Drive API letting you mount your account, or a specific path in your account, as a network drive. Since it connects via the API you can connect as many accounts on one machine as you want and access all the files on demand without needing to sync down the content.
It’s easy as authenticating multiple accounts and assigning them unique nicknames, give it a try for free.
Google Drive provides a backup and sync client forfor Mac and Windows that lets you sync the contents of your Drive to your desktop. But ExpanDrive is a special kind of Google Drive client that lets youmap Google Drive as a drive letter on Windows 7 through Windows 10 and on macOS. It connects directly to Google via their API and provides you with a virtual shared drive.
ExpanDrive lets you turn Google Drive into an actual shared drive. This has a number of advantages. First, you don’t have to sync in the entire library of content to actually use it. If your laptop only has 128G of storage, it’s pretty hard to make good use of a 10TB Google Drive account.
First Download ExpanDrive for Mac or Windows and install it. ExpanDrive sits in the system tray near your clock – just like the Google Drive client. Next you add a new Google Drive to ExpanDrive, click connect – and you’re done. You can now access Google Drive as a virtual drive from within any application on your Mac or PC. For more detailed instructions, check out our documentation on how to Map Google Drive as a drive using ExpanDrive.
ExpanDrive v6.1.13 is out fixing a variety of small issues and improving overall performance and stability. You can get this update from our download page or via the auto-updater. Detailed release notes are available on our support page.