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01-26-2017, 09:54 AM   #1
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Lightroom (Mac) & Cloud Storage

I just got a Macbook Pro from work (with Lightroom installed) and am hoping to be able to store all of my files on Google Drive. I know that I can easily use Google Drive to backup my files, but I'm hoping that there is a way that I can use Google Drive as the primary location for my images. In other words, I don't want to store any of the images locally (I will store the catalog locally). Is this possible? Or should I look into getting an external hard drive instead?

The reason I'd like to use Google Drive as my primary drive is that (through work) I get unlimited storage. All of my images would be used for work related purposes.

(In case anyone is wondering how I got unlimited Google Drive storage, I'm a school teacher and one of the classes I teach is Yearbook).

Thank you again for all of your help!

01-26-2017, 10:14 AM   #2
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Google Drive keeps a copy locally and a copy on the cloud...
01-26-2017, 10:18 AM   #3
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QuoteOriginally posted by boriscleto Quote
Google Drive keeps a copy locally and a copy on the cloud...
It does, but you have the option to select which folders to keep locally and which not to. I was wondering if there is a way to not keep any of those files locally and still be able to access them through Lightroom.
01-26-2017, 10:27 AM   #4
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I'd get more local storage. I'm not sure I'd want that stuff on my MBP for security reasons, and of course you need backup. Google Drive allows selective sync, so you can have some stuff upload in case it has to be shared or used elsewhere. I also haven't found Google Drive to be the most reliable (I'm sure the stuff online is safe, it's just that it has lost the sync connection at times on my machines). So having a reliable working local copy is a good thing.

01-26-2017, 10:30 AM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by Oakland Rob Quote
I'd get more local storage. I'm not sure I'd want that stuff on my MBP for security reasons, and of course you need backup. Google Drive allows selective sync, so you can have some stuff upload in case it has to be shared or used elsewhere. I also haven't found Google Drive to be the most reliable (I'm sure the stuff online is safe, it's just that it has lost the sync connection at times on my machines). So having a reliable working local copy is a good thing.
I was thinking the same thing, but hoping for something else. Any recommendations on some good portable external drives? If I'm going that route, I'd probably want two drives. One for personal, and one for work.

Thanks!
01-26-2017, 10:31 AM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by reivax Quote
It does, but you have the option to select which folders to keep locally and which not to. I was wondering if there is a way to not keep any of those files locally and still be able to access them through Lightroom.
No. That is not possible. Cloud storage has to sync with local files...

Only Google services can use cloud storage alone...
01-26-2017, 10:32 AM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by boriscleto Quote
No. That is not possible. Cloud storage has to sync with local files...
Maybe one day then. Thanks!
01-26-2017, 10:41 AM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by reivax Quote
Maybe one day then. Thanks!
It might work with iCloud Drive assuming you had enough storage space...

But only on macOS...

Google Drive on a desktop is like Dropbox...

01-26-2017, 10:49 AM   #9
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Far be it from me to shill for Micro$oft but their OneDrive does allow for cloud storage alone; in fact, if you've got an Office 365 account, Office applications want to store to OneDrive by default.
01-26-2017, 10:52 AM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by E-man Quote
Far be it from me to shill for Micro$oft but their OneDrive does allow for cloud storage alone; in fact, if you've got an Office 365 account, Office applications want to store to OneDrive by default.
With Office 365 I could store everything online and not locally?
01-26-2017, 11:02 AM   #11
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Yes. I have Office 365 through my work and every time I go to save a new file, it prompts me to save it to my OneDrive. When I do, the file is saved only there and not locally.
01-26-2017, 01:42 PM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by reivax Quote
I was thinking the same thing, but hoping for something else. Any recommendations on some good portable external drives? If I'm going that route, I'd probably want two drives. One for personal, and one for work.

Thanks!
Depending on how much space you need, I recommend the Samsung external SSDs. They're so much faster than spinning drives, the T3 drives are tiny, and their warranty service doesn't seem to care if it wasn't the drive's fault (my Mac's ports are loose, and I didn't realise until I bricked the drive, but they repaired it, several times).
01-27-2017, 10:10 AM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by boriscleto Quote
No. That is not possible. Cloud storage has to sync with local files...

Only Google services can use cloud storage alone...
Well, not all cloud storage requires local storage of course. SYNCHING does though. I like Amazon's AWS services; it's mostly used by enterprise outfits but not limited to that. I use a Mac FTP client (Forklift) to access it, but you can just use a browser. If you put img1234.jpeg there, and then erase img1234.jpg from all your devices, img1234.jpg is still up there in the cloud, waiting for you. They charge by the amount stored and transfered, so it's not a flat fee, which is nice.

And as to drives, I'd go with USB 3 and spinning hard drives. Yes, SSD are fast, but in externals are limited by the pipeline to your Mac, and the interface, say SATA III. Besides, with Lr the whole point is most of that frequently accessed stuff is in your catalog, on your boot drive. WAY more economical.

You might also consider a caddy; I use a Plugable and it's super reliable. I rotate in hard drives and keep one offsite at all times. I dunno what backup strategy you're using, but say an external with photos, backed to to two rotation HDDs, one always offsite, would be a minimum I'd think.
01-27-2017, 10:16 AM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by Oakland Rob Quote
Well, not all cloud storage requires local storage of course. SYNCHING does though. I like Amazon's AWS services; it's mostly used by enterprise outfits but not limited to that. I use a Mac FTP client (Forklift) to access it, but you can just use a browser. If you put img1234.jpeg there, and then erase img1234.jpg from all your devices, img1234.jpg is still up there in the cloud, waiting for you. They charge by the amount stored and transfered, so it's not a flat fee, which is nice.
But you still wouldn't be able to use that for your Lightroom storage.
01-27-2017, 11:44 AM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by Oakland Rob Quote
Well, not all cloud storage requires local storage of course. SYNCHING does though. I like Amazon's AWS services; it's mostly used by enterprise outfits but not limited to that. I use a Mac FTP client (Forklift) to access it, but you can just use a browser. If you put img1234.jpeg there, and then erase img1234.jpg from all your devices, img1234.jpg is still up there in the cloud, waiting for you. They charge by the amount stored and transfered, so it's not a flat fee, which is nice.

And as to drives, I'd go with USB 3 and spinning hard drives. Yes, SSD are fast, but in externals are limited by the pipeline to your Mac, and the interface, say SATA III. Besides, with Lr the whole point is most of that frequently accessed stuff is in your catalog, on your boot drive. WAY more economical.

You might also consider a caddy; I use a Plugable and it's super reliable. I rotate in hard drives and keep one offsite at all times. I dunno what backup strategy you're using, but say an external with photos, backed to to two rotation HDDs, one always offsite, would be a minimum I'd think.
Thanks for all of the recommendations!

I'm not sure I understand what you mean by SSD's being limited by the pipeline.

Also, using externals, I would keep my catalog on the hard drive and the actual files on an external, right?

Are there any caddies you recommend? Also, if I'm using multiple hard drives, would it be smarter to get smaller hard drives (1tb or 2tb instead of 2tb and 4tb. To have the whole "Don't keep all your eggs in one basket" idea).
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