Google Drive Client Recommendations
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Author Topic: Google Drive Client Recommendations  (Read 425 times)

Offline Kalthrix

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Google Drive Client Recommendations
« on: April 04, 2018, 10:54:07 PM »
This is a question that I find quite often from new users looking at switching over to Linux. The question of finding a good cloud client to work with whether it be to store photos for use in between devices or even for university students like myself needing to share documents in between desktop & laptop or mobile devices. Not everyone might necessarily agree on the choice of cloud service used, however could likely see why such a service would be needed or rather, used.

I've personally used Google Drive since it came out. I understand that Dropbox has a native client as does a variety of other "paid" services. I understand that it is not secure and anything I put up there, I am putting in the "big bad" company's hands and that there are a lot more services out there that would store my data more securely, etc. However, one of the reasons I choose to continue to use Google Drive is due to the amount of storage is given to a non-subscriber. I only store homework on Drive. If they want to take and use that, more power to them lol. ;)

Anyway, the best drive client that I have found for connecting with Google Drive hands down has been Insync. Insync is a proprietary client, in essence meaning that you have to pay once to use it. Thankfully not a subscription based service. Enough to give credit to the developer and support that they provide. It essentially handles synchronization much like the client provided by Google, but a lot more streamlined. Also, the added badges to show which files are pending and which ones had been synced is an added bonus. :)



A full feature list of this client is available at:

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Now, one of the things that prompted me to write this story today is just how far Insync has progressed over time. I remember purchasing their client shortly after it had been released. At the time, they only had a package for Debian/Ubuntu. It has since been brought to Red Hat (RPM-based distros), and Arch. I recently had switched over to Manjaro 17 XFCE and have been really happy with it so far. I had attempted to install Insync, however for the first time had been met with some problems. I was able to install the client from AUR as well as the tray icon (sni-qt) and the corresponding file manager extension for Thunar. However, the client itself would only download 4 files from the root directory of my Drive. I sent a message to Insync support regarding this to see if there was anything they would recommend to essentially "force-sync" everything as it does in every other distro I have used it on. In the interim, I started looking for possible alternatives while I worked with their team.

I ended up running across a "free" gem of sorts kind of in an obscure post on the Arch Forums (don't remember the exact one). The client was called "Grive". Looked through so many of them trying to figure out what I could possibly do to get Insync to work. Can find more information here:

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I ended up installing Grive and associated Grive-Tools from AUR and I would have to say, I'm actually pretty impressed. I'm not fully aware of limitations with this client as it seems to essentially perform the same functions as its Insync alterntative? However, the setup was quite painless and it appears to have downloaded everything. I am going to use it for some time while we hash out the issues with Insync (actually surprisingly recognized the Google Drive folder created by Insync) and will report back any issues that I find with it.

Anyway, thought I would get this out there for anyone in a similar boat or looking for a potential Google Drive client for Linux.
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Offline Spatry

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Re: Google Drive Client Recommendations
« Reply #1 on: April 05, 2018, 08:10:40 AM »
Ya know... I am still scratching my chin and wondering if I should make use of the cloud and start storing data there? For now I prefer to store data on media I purchased myself, then I do not need to worry about someone eavesdropping on my stuff... Not that I have anything to hide really, but you do not know who has access to the data you are storing in the cloud and who might have access to that data... Sure you can use encryption (password) your files but even then that is not foolproof, there are ways around that...

In all honesty, if upload speeds from my ISP were faster, I would probably consider cloud storage for temporary backup and/or retrieval of data but at present I am not there just yet. Thanks for sharing your views on this topic.
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Offline fraterchaos

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Re: Google Drive Client Recommendations
« Reply #2 on: April 05, 2018, 04:35:46 PM »
I use Google Drive, but basically only for sending large files to friends.

And I don't use a client at all... I just bring it up in a browser tab and hit the "New File" button and it allows me to upload the file.

I found that this provided a much faster upload than using the standard GDrive client software which not only took forever to upload, but was always eating bandwidth to "sync"... even when there was nothing new to "sync"

If that's all you're using it for, sending a few files that are too big for your email provider, then I would suggest just foregoing any client software.
Science, like Nature, must also be tamed... with a view towards it's preservation. -- Rush

Offline glsmaxx

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Re: Google Drive Client Recommendations
« Reply #3 on: April 05, 2018, 05:00:57 PM »

Personally, I don't have anything in the cloud that I wouldn't post here. Things like dot-files, Music, Notes, etc. I probably have 25G across mega.nz , A couple of GDrive accounts, A Box account I have with 50G of storage on it.  I DO .tar most everything and then encrypt it with ccrypt. Using a 25 to 30 char password. That should make it safe enough.
Anything I have that I would Prefer to not be seen by everyone I store Locally  Compressed and Encrypted with a password long enough that would take longer to brute force than I will care about ANY data.
I do not use any of the clients on my computer. I have fast fiber and it doesn't take long to upload even a large file.
I have to admit I do use Google Photos {free}. I know it is a very bad idea.  I do not have any geo information attached to the photos and just auto-save there and also to the 128G card in my phone. Seeing as I have 3 children and 6 grand-kids I really need somewhere to save photos. I am not sure how many Gigs I have but it is a LOT. I take a lot of pix on Holidays and am always being sent something or the like. I also have all my game cam photos up there and that in and of its self is a lot.
Just thought I'd add my ideas. Right wrong or indifferent. I am glad the Spatry has returned and COL is on the uptick I thought I would support it with a rambling myself.
 

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Offline Ironclaw

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Re: Google Drive Client Recommendations
« Reply #4 on: April 06, 2018, 12:35:37 AM »
Remember, when you're storing stuff on the  cloud, what  you're really doing is storing stuff on other people's computers.  If you have no problem with relinquising control of your data to other people, that's your choice, for me I only use it when I want to share files.
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Offline Kalthrix

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Re: Re: Google Drive Client Recommendations
« Reply #5 on: April 08, 2018, 03:00:19 AM »
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Personally, I don't have anything in the cloud that I wouldn't post here. Things like dot-files, Music, Notes, etc. I probably have 25G across mega.nz , A couple of GDrive accounts, A Box account I have with 50G of storage on it.  I DO .tar most everything and then encrypt it with ccrypt. Using a 25 to 30 char password. That should make it safe enough.
Anything I have that I would Prefer to not be seen by everyone I store Locally  Compressed and Encrypted with a password long enough that would take longer to brute force than I will care about ANY data.
I do not use any of the clients on my computer. I have fast fiber and it doesn't take long to upload even a large file.
I have to admit I do use Google Photos {free}. I know it is a very bad idea.  I do not have any geo information attached to the photos and just auto-save there and also to the 128G card in my phone. Seeing as I have 3 children and 6 grand-kids I really need somewhere to save photos. I am not sure how many Gigs I have but it is a LOT. I take a lot of pix on Holidays and am always being sent something or the like. I also have all my game cam photos up there and that in and of its self is a lot.
Just thought I'd add my ideas. Right wrong or indifferent. I am glad the Spatry has returned and COL is on the uptick I thought I would support it with a rambling myself.

Same concerning the files I store on Google Drive. Although, mostly just ODT documents written in Libreoffice containing school notes. I actually utilize Google Photos as well. Given unlimited cloud storage for any photos that I decide to share with family. Keep it set up where I have to manually upload photos to the cloud, but other than that don't mind what I actually send up there. Usually just pictures of our family, my 2 kids, and our animals. :)

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Remember, when you're storing stuff on the  cloud, what  you're really doing is storing stuff on other people's computers.  If you have no problem with relinquising control of your data to other people, that's your choice, for me I only use it when I want to share files.

Mainly just homework for me in between devices. Find its easier to keep all of my projects synced with a client so I can leave off on one device and pick up on another. I'd be surprised if anyone could find anything of use on my Google Drive account. Photos on the other hand, only what I choose to sync from my phone to share among family. I figure in that sense, no more dangerous than sharing them on social media.
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