Amazon Cloud Drive

Amazon is offering a free three-month trial of its “unlimited” Cloud Drive service. I put that word in quotes because there always seems to be a catch down the road somewhere. My guess is the gotcha might come after your first three months are up and you shift to paying $60 for a year for your “Unlimited Everything” tier of service. Perhaps the user agreement might then shift from “unlimited” to “unlimited within reason“? Or “unlimited” until Comcast thinks you’re seeding BitTorrent 24/7 and clamps down on your bandwidth quota?

Not that that’s ever happened to me, mind you. But still.

Anyway. Last week I signed up for the three-month trial and began uploading the contents of a 2TB hard drive. By today I was up to “G” in my FLAC collection. It’s slow going.

There’s been a few glitches.

If your folders or filenames have slashes (/), tildes, accents or anything similar, they won’t upload. I had no idea there were so many folders with “24/96” in my collection. Since most file systems treat that slash as part of a directory path, those folder names won’t work; you’ll get a vague error message saying the upload of those files or folders failed. Be prepared to de-slash your file and folder names. For the tilde-accent-etc issue, the workaround is to duplicate the folders, then amend the names to exclude the forbidden characters and upload the altered folder — then delete the amended duplicate from your source drive.

Another annoying occurrence is an error message saying the folder or file already exists, and asking you if you want to quit the upload or overwrite it. This is nearly always a false error message, so I just ok the overrwrite and check the “apply to all” box.

Here’s another mystery message that hit me tonight:

Screen Shot 2015-04-04 at 8.55.30 PM

As with most Cloud uploads, it’s best to do a few folders at a time, not your whole hard drive. Otherwise, keeping up with the various error messages and reuploads is gonna be a bitch.

Far as I can tell you can’t use Cloud Drive to stream audio to the desktop. The iOS app seems to be mainly designed for photos, not audio. It appears that Cloud Drive is for storage only, not streaming.

I’m not sure if I’ll be ready to shell out $60 for a year of the service once my trial is up in late June. We’ll see how Cloud Drive behaves once all the audio is uploaded.

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