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January 26, 2009

More Signs of a Google Webdrive

The long-awaited and much-delayed GDrive is likely to be released in the near future as more pieces of its integration are revealed. Cédric Vergé noticed a change in one of the CSS files for Google Apps: there's a class named "webdrive" and an icon for the new service.


When Google released Picasa for Mac, many people wondered what's the mystery behind a menu option titled "Google Web Drive":


Last week, Tony Ruscoe found some traces of an internal Google document which mentioned an update for Google Docs, which will slowly morph into GDrive. Apparently, Google Docs will be the web interface for GDrive, while a Windows/Mac client will integrate the service with the operating system and make it easy to synchronize files.

{ Thanks, Cédric. }

35 comments:

  1. 9to5mac.com found the icon
    https://www.google.com/a/cpanel/resources/img/img/mini_webdrive.gif

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  2. is a mini mini icon,jajajaja

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  3. Wasn't the Google Webdrive for Google Only Internal use?

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  4. It'll be interesting if Google releases it like Gmail, on April Fool's Day.

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  5. I'm hearing March 15th. My sources say that they will offer 10 gig free, with pricing plans beyond that.

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  6. Would love to have it soon! Go Googlers!

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  7. Stop teasing and bring it out!

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  8. I've written tons of code where I named classes, methods, and assets to something that's planned only to have it never come to fruition. I would definitely not assume these artifacts prove anything. Even my blog has scripting objects named things I planned on, but never got to.

    That being said, at the rate Google and Microsoft are adding cloud servers... I fully expect web based drives to be very popular soon. The OS is the biggest hurdle, not the web anyway.

    Just my 2 cents...

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  9. I found this related article:

    Google plans to make PCs history
    Industry critics warn of danger in giving internet leader more power

    David Smith, technology correspondent
    The Observer, Sunday 25 January 2009

    Google is to launch a service that would enable users to access their personal computer from any internet connection, according to industry reports. But campaigners warn that it would give the online behemoth unprecedented control over individuals' personal data.

    The Google Drive, or "GDrive", could kill off the desktop computer, which relies on a powerful hard drive. Instead a user's personal files and operating system could be stored on Google's own servers and accessed via the internet.

    The long-rumoured GDrive is expected to be launched this year, according to the technology news website TG Daily, which described it as "the most anticipated Google product so far". It is seen as a paradigm shift away from Microsoft's Windows operating system, which runs inside most of the world's computers, in favour of "cloud computing", where the processing and storage is done thousands of miles away in remote data centres.

    Home and business users are increasingly turning to web-based services, usually free, ranging from email (such as Hotmail and Gmail) and digital photo storage (such as Flickr and Picasa) to more applications for documents and spreadsheets (such as Google Apps). The loss of a laptop or crash of a hard drive does not jeopardise the data because it is regularly saved in "the cloud" and can be accessed via the web from any machine.

    The GDrive would follow this logic to its conclusion by shifting the contents of a user's hard drive to the Google servers. The PC would be a simpler, cheaper device acting as a portal to the web, perhaps via an adaptation of Google's operating system for mobile phones, Android. Users would think of their computer as software rather than hardware.

    It is this prospect that alarms critics of Google's ambitions. Peter Brown, executive director of the Free Software Foundation, a charity defending computer users' liberties, did not dispute the convenience offered, but said: "It's a little bit like saying, 'we're in a dictatorship, the trains are running on time.' But does it matter to you that someone can see everything on your computer? Does it matter that Google can be subpoenaed at any time to hand over all your data to the American government?"

    Google refused to confirm the GDrive, but acknowledged the growing demand for cloud computing. Dave Armstrong, head of product and marketing for Google Enterprise, said: "There's a clear direction ... away from people thinking, 'This is my PC, this is my hard drive,' to 'This is how I interact with information, this is how I interact with the web.'"

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  10. Well, that's not only trouble for MS but also very much for Mac.

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  11. That would be really an awesome product from google

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  12. That would be really an awesome product from google

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  13. If it is encrypted, that would put paid to the critics who are worried about "Big Brother Google"

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  14. Did you guys hear about a service that was called Streamload and late MediaMax. It allowed users to have tons and tons of storage, I had hundreds of terrabytes in my account. You would mostly only pay for download traffic. The thing being the Streamload client software would scan your file, and if it was popular, thus already uploaded once by another Streamload user, then it would magically beam instantly into your account. This way, basically all DivX, Mp3 all that stuff was already there on their servers, so no need to upload them again, and no need to duplicate the cost of storage, Streamload would just store one copy of each file even if many users would have and use the same files.

    Then Streamload had this feature of allowing users to send files to other users. Basically like Google Docs file collaboration feature, you type in the email or username of the users to give access to your files. Streamload also allowed you to host your files on open URLs, also host whole folders full of files. Again you would have to cover the cost of hosting.

    Google should do it like this, if you share some files ou should not pay yourself for all the bandwidth used, you would let each of the invited users to pay each themselves for their used download bandwith.

    I can't wait for the Google $00 Android laptop with full cloud computing access to this service. Not only for seamless and cheap terabytes of online storage, but also for full grid computing such as using Google's grid to quickly encode HD videos, to render animations, pictures and effects.

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  15. Nobody is forced to use Google, much less GDrive. I store lots of photos on various sites, including Picasaweb and am looking into similar repositories.
    Store some files in DropBox. I use and will continue to use online storage primarily as a backup.

    If the OS and/or browsers started forcing it, I expect OpenSource movement would provide a way around it. If not, i would code my on OS - it's really not all that hard.

    Only issue would be if PC manufacturers regress to SD drives only big enough for the OS and minimal client-side apps. Before that could happen, the Cloud would have to contain every app anyone would ever need, plus absolute security. I don't think that is going to happen in my lifetime - and I plan to live a long time. Beyond that, I could always build my own PC...

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  16. Chicken. mmmmmmmm.

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  17. That's a really interesting catch! Never knew people monitor CSS changes to such details!

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  18. Wow, What a news!!!. Cannot wait to see this go live. Dreaming for months!! of web based access and get rid of Desktop.
    Karthik
    Bangalore.

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  19. Hi all. Full disclosure here: I work for www.nomadesk.com, which offers easy and secure file sharing, wherever you are. I read your post on Google's GDrive with great interest and just wanted to add NomaDesk to the mix.
    In fact, NomaDesk has similar features and is geared towards the need of the "digital nomad". We are convinced that the more data gets synchronized, the more likely it gets compromised. Therefore, NomaDesk includes an encrypted virtual drive that keeps your files securely available off-line and remote file shredding and IP-tracking with TheftGuard. Of course, we impose no limits on storage and bandwidth.
    The current NomaDesk release 2.6 displays file states and indicate whether files are already in use by someone else. You are also able to add and review notes (i.e. meta-data). The Mac version is on its way.

    I would appreciate your review.
    F.

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  20. They should have launched this years ago. I've been using dropbox for a very long time and it really is the kind of stuff Google should have done back then.

    I don't think a Gdrive will have such an impact now, with lots of different services offering the same service...

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  21. https://platypus.corp.google.com/
    The service is not available. Please try again later.

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  22. Google drive will be a great one and will be of huge help to everyone. Waiting to see it soon

    - unixfoo.blogspot.com

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  23. GDrive is, for me, exactly that stuff: http://olipo.appspot.com
    (click go, the GDrive plugin is the last one)

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  24. Any news? Anyone?
    I keep googling this and it seems that are no new sightings of The Drive in the wild.

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  25. Can't wait to get this service GDrive thanks for sharing.

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  26. It will be nice to have some competition for MSN's 25GB sky drive. I'll be looking forward to this G-Drive or WebDrive

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  27. come on google, we will be forced to move to alternatives if you don't hurry up with this web drve of yours!! and btw, please rename google docs to google files!!

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  28. not happening ne tyme zoon

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  29. Wow, congratulations on being yet another blog to use the phrases, "looks like", "GDrive" and "released in the near future" far far far too closely together. Surely you've seen every single other tech blog out there doing the same thing...? No? Oh.

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