Affiliate Disclosure: By buying the products we recommend, you help keep the lights on at MakeUseOf. Read more.
That’s not the only feature worth noting, however. Cloud Drive offers 5GB of free space by default, and that can be raised to 20GB (for one year) if you purchase an MP3 album from Amazon. The space can be accessed on any PC, but only via a web browser – that is, until now.
Hey! You Got Some Dropbox In My Amazon!
Cloud Drive is a new service, but it’s not a new idea. Dropbox, a favorite utility of the MakeUseOf staff, has been in the cloud storage game for quite some time. Even Microsoft offers a cloud storage solution called Windows Live SkyDrive.
Amazon’s Cloud Drive is at a bit of a disadvantage because Amazon has only released a web interface. That’s fine for many tasks, but it’s not the sort of seamless integration that can be found with Dropbox and other solutions. But there is a way to make Cloud Drive act very much like Dropbox, and it’s called Gladinet Cloud Desktop.
Gladinet Cloud Desktop is a cloud storage access platform that has been available since 2009. The utility makes it possible to access cloud storage directly from your computer by mounting the cloud storage as a drive. Once mounted, it will show up in My Computer as a Network Location.
The free edition can be downloaded from Gladinet’s site. It offers limited functionality compared to the full version of the software – for example, you can’t transfer more than 1,000 files in a single action, and you can’t access the backup features – but the limitations aren’t likely to be a concern for most users and won’t impact what we’re trying to accomplish.
Setting up Gladinet for use with Cloud Drive is simple. During installation, you will prompted to set up any accounts you may have. The list is alphabetical, so Amazon Cloud Drive will be at the top. Select it, and then enter your Amazon credentials. Installation will complete and Amazon Cloud Drive will be mounted as a Network Location.
Creating The Cloud Desktop
Installing Gladinet will give you access to Cloud Drive, but it does not place it on your desktop. To do that, you simply need to open My Computer and then open My Gladinet Drive. Right-click the Amazon Cloud Drive folder and then click Create Shortcut. Place the shortcut on your desktop, and that’s it. You now have access to Cloud Drive directly from your desktop.
Of course, you can move that shortcut around just like any other shortcut. So if you’d like to place it in My Documents or another folder, feel free to do so.
Beyond Cloud Drive
While Gladinet’s extremely quick support of Amazon Cloud Drive is the program’s newest feature, it’s far from the only one available. Gladinet offers access to a huge variety of cloud storage providers. This includes Google Docs, Picasa, and Windows Live SkyDrive. Dropbox is, I’m sorry to report, is not an option.
You can mount those alongside Cloud Drive by opening the Gladinet Cloud Desktop and then navigating to Manage My Cloud Storage Accounts. Once there, click on the folder icon in the upper left hand corner. You’ll be prompted to select a storage provider and enter your password, just as when you set up Cloud Drive.
For even more information about Gladinet Cloud Desktop, check out our post dedicated to the software.
Gladinet is a great solution for cloud storage, and so far appears to be the only cloud desktop software offering support for Amazon Cloud Drive. If you know of any other Cloud Drive tricks, however, please leave a comment!