WebDav Dropbox Alternative

Discussion in 'PowerPC Macs' started by Dronecatcher, Jan 22, 2015.

  1. Dronecatcher macrumors 68000

    Dronecatcher

    Joined:
    Jun 17, 2014
    Location:
    Lincolnshire, UK
    #1
    I thought I'd have a root around to see if there's any viable, easy and free alternative to Dropbox now support is on the way out.
    Whilst I couldn't find anything that offers everything Dropbox does (that doesn't cost anything), I think using the WebDav protocol might come close.

    First sign up for some free online storage that's compatible with WebDav on a Mac:

    http://www.swissdisk.com/

    http://macmate.me/mac-cloud-disk.php

    https://www.cloudme.com/en

    These services offer free storage along with paid subscription and allow you to connect using WebDav - which on a Mac is simple:

    Finder/Go/Connect to Server.....then fill in the details as supplied by the online storage provider.

    Your online storage is then mounted as a virtual drive which is read/write accessible system wide, so you can use from applications or drag and drop. If you add the drive as a login item, it will be mounted at startup so it's always ready.

    WebDav clients are available for Linux, Windows and smartphones too so all devices can have access.

    At a lower level of functionality, the Goliath utility is faster at web transfers with WebDav but doesn't mount a virtual drive - however it works on OS9 to Leopard!
    Available here:

    http://www.webdav.org/goliath/

    A final point, as we are dealing with network drives, it's a good idea to prevent .DS_Store files being created, so
    execute this command in Terminal:

    defaults write com.apple.desktopservices DSDontWriteNetworkStores true

    I've only done a brief investigation of these as I don't personally have much use for Dropbox - I'm betting someone out there can squeeze more functionality out of using WebDav.
     
  2. Altemose macrumors G3

    Altemose

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2013
    Location:
    Elkton, Maryland
    #2
    If you would like, I can make a AppleScript application to disable .DS_Store files and post it here.
     
  3. Dronecatcher thread starter macrumors 68000

    Dronecatcher

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    #3
    Sure - does that work differently from the Terminal instruction or is it just to add the convenience of an executable?
     
  4. Altemose macrumors G3

    Altemose

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    #4
    It would make it into an application that people can use rather than execute Terminal commands. Under the hood it literally just executes the command you posted.
     
  5. Dronecatcher thread starter macrumors 68000

    Dronecatcher

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  6. Altemose macrumors G3

    Altemose

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    #6
    This is the application using the command that Dronecatcher posted.
     

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  7. NathanJHill macrumors member

    NathanJHill

    Joined:
    Oct 29, 2014
    #7
    Box.net is another option, BTW. I connect to its webdav folder every start up on my Mac, and then you would need to use a syncing program along with it. However, last I remember, it didn't handle newer Apple files, like a Pages.app file, very well.
     
  8. grockk macrumors 6502

    grockk

    Joined:
    Mar 16, 2006
    #8
    With a static ip or dynamic ip service you can install a WebDAV service and roll your own solution. I used no-ip and a windows 7 box to host a WebDAV based calendar and file storage. It's not really cloud but works for me.

    WebDAV tutorial is here. I'm sure you can find one for os x if you google it. http://www.iis.net/learn/install/installing-publishing-technologies/installing-and-configuring-webdav-on-iis
     
  9. poiihy macrumors 68020

    poiihy

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    Aug 22, 2014
    #9
    Only a few days and the PPC community has already found workarounds :)

    I wonder if there is any program that syncs folders. Then you could sync the mounted Server to a folder on your computer, and it would be just like Dropbox!
     
  10. Dronecatcher thread starter macrumors 68000

    Dronecatcher

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    #10
    The rsync command in Terminal can be used for syncing folders - I'm sure a scheduled sync is possible for those well versed at the command line.
     
  11. Dronecatcher thread starter macrumors 68000

    Dronecatcher

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    #11
    Thanks - I missed Box.net - at first glance on their website it looked like only the subscription service had all the connectivity options.
    There's probably more storage providers with (Mac compatible) WebDav too - they're all worth a shot.
     
  12. roadbloc macrumors G3

    roadbloc

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    Aug 24, 2009
    Location:
    UK
    #12
    I just remembered, Box gave me 50GB of free storage space for some promotional reason of some sort. Does WebDAV functionality work with a free Box account and if so, how can I get it working on OS X Tiger?
     
  13. Dronecatcher thread starter macrumors 68000

    Dronecatcher

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    #13
    I've just signed up for free account to test it - WebDav connection works fine under Leopard, so will be ok on Tiger too. Note, the Box sync app doesn't work on PPC.
     
  14. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

    Staff Member

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    Jan 23, 2005
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    California
    #14
    I'm using Forklift with a free Box.net account and WebDav and it works perfectly on Yosemite and Mavericks.

    Not sure if Forklift still works on Leopard. I don't see anything on their site either way.
     
  15. Dronecatcher thread starter macrumors 68000

    Dronecatcher

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    #15
    Forklift 1.7.8 does indeed work on Leopard and adds the sync functionality - however, Forklift is a commercial app and costs $29.95. If you're happy to pay there is more scope for Dropbox replacements.
     
  16. Dronecatcher thread starter macrumors 68000

    Dronecatcher

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    #16
    G3 doing the WebDav thing in OS9 :)
    Dropbox? Pffft.
     

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  17. NathanJHill macrumors member

    NathanJHill

    Joined:
    Oct 29, 2014
    #17
    As I remember, Box.net had some quirks to get it connect on a Mac under Leopard. There was an Applescript floating around, but I eventually figured it out or Box.net improved its overall webdav support. I have tried Forklift (which lost my love from not working well) and Cyberduck (which seems fine).

    I do know that another option might be an inexpensive hosting account that uses Cpanel. They also have webdav options to use that space, but you will need to check with the host. For as little as $10/year, you can get something decent and try it. I use Lithium Hosting, and it's solid.

    Another option is Amazon S3 storage, which has a free tier for the first year and then is pretty low depending on the amount of data you might store. Cyberduck can interface with S3, I believe.
     
  18. Dronecatcher thread starter macrumors 68000

    Dronecatcher

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    #18
    At the moment Box is working fine with WebDav connection - all that remains elusive is the simplicity of the Dropbox sync folder - free of charge solutions that is. However, you can get pretty damn close with rsync to synchronize a local folder.
     
  19. NathanJHill macrumors member

    NathanJHill

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    Oct 29, 2014
    #19
    If anyone wants to try this and report back, I'd love to hear how it works. I will be trying it next week. It may be a nice work around if you absolutely must keep Dropbox.

    https://www.dropdav.com/
     
  20. Dronecatcher thread starter macrumors 68000

    Dronecatcher

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    Lincolnshire, UK
    #20
    150Mb upload file limit may put some off and it still doesn't offer the sync folder on PPC. Personally I'd stick with WebDav via Box - 5 times more space and it's free.
    Dropdav is ideal for those who need absolutely need Dropbox functionality on their other fully compatible devices.
     
  21. NathanJHill macrumors member

    NathanJHill

    Joined:
    Oct 29, 2014
    #21
    Well, to be clear, it mounts your Dropbox folder as a webdav link, meaning there is no need for a file sync. It's like uploading a file to the Dropbox folder through the web interface, meaning that it automatically syncs on the server side.

    The biggest drawback is that it costs $5/month, a little less if you pay a year in advance. So, if you are absolutely stuck with Dropbox, it might be a work around. There are some reviews on these forums that suggest it can be buggy too. I'll keep poking around for other options.
     
  22. Dronecatcher thread starter macrumors 68000

    Dronecatcher

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    #22
    It seems the sync folder is what people are desperate to replace though - the ability to put stuff in a folder and let Dropbox do the rest in the background.
    Personally, I find mounting a WebDav drive as and when needed no problem - another plus is that WebDav drives are accessible from any OS, so you can link up anywhere.

    This online storage provider:
    http://www.adrive.com/
    Allow you to sync directly to your account using rsync, as well as WebDav and web interface and offer 100Gb for $25 a year which is amazing value compared with the competition.
     

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