amazoncloudIf you are like me, your files are fragmented across various cloud services:

  • Backup: Offisite backup of yoru PC using CrashPlan or Backblaze (please tell me you are doing offsite backup of your files)
  • Files: Other files on one or many cloud drives
  • Photos: Photos taking up space on one of your cloud drives, or perhaps in another place like Flickr or iCloud

The problems we have with these arrangements are:

  • No Sharing: Backup services don’t have a way to browse or share files unless you pay more (like for SharePlan, CrashPlan’s extra service)
  • No free multiple device support: Backup services often charge per device
  • Limited Filespace: You have to pay in more than one place for filespace. Many have limits.

My solution? If you are an Amazon Prime member, you can use the following combination of software for backup from all of your devices for $50 a year (photos are free). And share them.

1. Download the Software

1.1  Mac

1.2  PC

1.3  iOS

1.4  Android

2. Set up your uploads

The key to all of these is that you want to upload, then delete photos from your mobile devices, but not files you have on your mac/pc. Those are merely backed up.

2.1  Mac and PC

Since both will be using GoodSync, here’s the setup in GoodSync PC (Mac will be similar):

  1. Follow the GoodSync tutorial
  2. Make sure that you choose BACKUP as your Job Type (step 2 in their tutorial)
  3. Make sure you schedule your backup to run regularly.
  4. Use the email address you have used for your Amazon cloud account here:

goodsync_amazonsetup

WARNING: Before you start your upload, make sure your files are cleaned up and in the folder you want them to be. Otherwise, later cleanup may cause problems like duplicates or deleted files.

2.2  Android

Backup and delete is easiest on Android, thanks to FolderSync. If you want to upload your pics v. movies into different folders, or change your folder each year, you can, but you’ll have to set up new folder pairs for that. You can check out their tutorial page, but here’s my steps:

1. Add your Amazon Cloud Account:

  • Choose Accounts
  • Click the green PLUS button
  • Choose Amazon Cloud ddrive

fs_menu

fs_newaccount

2. Create Folder Pairs

Pull in the side menu, choose Folder Pairs, then click the green PLUS button. The default folder for your Android device’s photos may be different, but it’s typically inside the DCIM folder, so you have to navigate to that.

fc_folderpairs

3. Set your sync options

To have it auto-delete once uploaded, you need to set Delete source files after sync to ON.

fs_syncsettings

4. Run whenever you like

You can set it to auto-run, or run when on Wi-Fi, or just manually, which is what I prefer. You can actually put a shortcut on the desktop which you can press to run the sync.

2.3  iOS

Unfortunately, iOS will not let any program delete files directly. So you’ll have more steps to upload, then delete.

1. Turn on backup in Amazon photos

In your Amazon photo app, turn on backups:

uploadON

2. Make sure all backups are done

Before you delete all, make sure that this indicator says you are done.

NOT DONE:

stilluploading

You can click on the bottom left to see how much you’ve got left to upload:

uploadingAz

THIS IS DONE:

file_000-1

3. Delete all photos in 3rd Party App

After confirming Amazon photo is done uploading, I go into my bulk delete app, select all, and delete. You can also delete based on time periods, etc. Your call.

4. Go into Photos and delete your deletions

iOS photos does not support Select All (except within an Album), and it also does not allow the third party app to permanently delete stuff. You have to then clear out the deleted items folder (or wait 30 days till it clears itself).

3. Move your existing photos from other cloud services

Got lots of stuff to move to Amazon from Dropbox, Google Drive, or other places? Multcloud will let you move up to 10TB for free! It’s pretty painless and cool. However, you should note this:

  • The ‘move’ function does not delete from the source drive (it acts like ‘copy’)
  • You should probably set up your file structure on the target drive in advance
  • Files with the same name won’t all transfer – they either skip or overwrite, so be careful!

multcloud

CONCLUSION

That’s how I back up all my devices to my Amazon Cloud account.

Note that sharing of files and decent file management are only available on the web (cloud.amazon.com), since the Amazon drive mobile apps are severely limited.

There are other apps that allow you to browse your Amazon cloud drive nicely, like odrive. But they’re typically not free.