Use a local drive as "the cloud"?

I have hard drives out the yin-yang and I’d love to use one of my 4tb drives as my centralized storage, essentially as my cloud storage, then use odrive to sync parts of that 4tb data store to other computers. So I might have some coworkers join (a “space”, I think?) for like 500gb of work files, and my computer at home might sync everything, and so on.

So, in short, is there a way to essentially migrate all my cloud-based stuff into an odrive folder stored on an external drive, and then cancel all of these cloud storages?

I’d rather just buy a hard drive (plugged into an always-on machine). Yaknow?

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Hi @leefur,
odrive supports protocols such as WebDAV, FTP, and SFTP. Many folks use these capabilities to connect to their own storage.

For Windows systems, there is a guide here on setting up WebDAV: How do I setup a WebDAV Server on Windows and link it to odrive?

For Mac and Linux systems, they already have SSH built-in, so SFTP can be used pretty quickly if you are wanting to test things out.

Very interesting! I can always Google around myself, but if you know of any walkthroughs for how to set that up on the Mac, or if anyone else on here has already asked and gotten an answer (my searching didn’t find any), I’d be everso grateful.

Regardless, thanks, and I’ll experiment!

Hi @leefur,
On Mac, SSH/SFTP can be enabled by just going to System Preferences -> Sharing. Check the “Enable Remote Login”.

That enables the SSH system and you can then use odrive to link.

If you want your system to be accessible outside of the local network, you will need to enable external connection routing to that system, which is a little more complicated. When linking, if you have not setup external access, the odrive web client will state that it can’t connect. This is expected. You can continue with the linking, but make sure the IP address you are using is the LAN ip address, so your odrive client can connect properly.

How about integrating an rsync server into odrive on Windows? Then I could use my QNAP server to grab and mirror the odrive folders on my Windows server – I currently use QNAP rsync but it has to access the files over SMB. It looks like WebDav requires IIS, and that’s pretty heavy-weight.

Hi @uwe.baemayr,
We used to have a product called the odrive File Server (OFS) that tried to serve as an easy way to serve as a endpoint for your machine, but it is no longer available. We may bring back this concept in the future, however.

IIS is a little heavy, but you can target just the modules you need for WebDAV to lighten things up.

Since this has gotten a mite technical for me… it looks like I won’t be using local storage after all. Recommendation on the cheapest cloud storage to use instead? (I have 9 or 10 Google Apps accounts for my company, maybe I can do something with that? I have 1-2 tb to store (though if I can use this for Plex… add another 2tb or so).

If a lot of the content is photos, if you’re an Amazon Prime member you can use odrive to sync unlimited photos (even RAW) to Amazon drive. I have a bit over a TB there right now for no extra charge beyond the annual Prime fee.

For other files, Amazon is still a pretty good deal at $60/TB/year (NOT month). Right now they have a sale for $40/TB for the first year.

As a comparison, Google Drive is $10/TB/Month ($120/TB/Year) right now, but you don’t have to prepay a year.


Hi @leefur,
Since odrive allows you to access all of your storage, including your 9-10 Google Apps accounts, you could more easily manage them within odrive. You may not want to use company storage for that, though.

The cheapest general-purpose storage right now is probably Office 365/OneDrive, at least for 5TB. See here: Best options for 2TB of cloud storage?

As @amazon9 stated above, if you have mostly pictures, then Amazon Drive might work for you. Google Photos also allows unlimited Photo and video upload for free. Unfortunately Google Photos doesn’t provide an API to integrate to yet.

Thank you @Tony (and @amazon9). If I went with the Office/OneDrive solution (despite not touching anything else Office with someone else’s 20 foot pole), would I be missing anything that, say, Google or Dropbox would get me? Speed? Versioning?

Best I can tell, regardless of the cloud service, I’ll just be using it seamlessly in my Finder.

One caveat – I plan on using this with my team. So there’d be a few of us (on our company GApps email addresses) accessing the same files and directories. Any hangups there? Dropbox sometimes gets confused and conflicted. I know ODrive also saves conflicted files with “conflict…” in the filename. Any other ways that ODrive differs from the crowd with this situation?

Thank you SO much helping me through this… I plan on being a paying customer in one way or another at some point soon here…

Hi @leefur,
A few points to consider:

  • In the Office 365/OneDrive case, the 5TB is distributed across 5 x 1TB accounts, so that can be seen as a disadvantage.
  • OneDrive does not have versioning for all file types, like Google Drive and Dropbox do.
  • Google Drive generally tests as the fastest consumer cloud storage, at least from my testing, with Dropbox a distant second and OneDrive even further behind.
  • Multi-user collaboration is always going to be a bit problematic if users are working on the same files at the same time. odrive opts for data safety, so it will create conflicts, but sometimes it can be overly aggressive with conflict handling.
  • Using OneDrive shares with odrive has some issues. Namely that you cannot edit files that have been shared with you. It was a long-standing OneDrive API limitation, but it is reportedly addressed now in recent API updates. Unfortunately we haven’t had the chance to try to integrate them yet. You can use odrive Spaces as an alternative, however ( Google Drive has a small issue too with its native Shares (Shared with me) in that you cannot delete shared files/folders via odrive.

My advice is to do some testing and see which storage works best for your particular use case. I generally lean towards Google Drive because of its global versioning, speed, and reliability, but it is more expensive.

Thank you, Tony. That kind of confirms my concerns… if Drive had a better sharing model I’d probably be happy just sticking with it. So if ODrive can improve on that and add a kind of selective sync… sounds like we have a front-runner.

Thanks again!