The dummies guide to getting 10GB of free storage on Amazon S3

Recently we announced that we upped our storage limit to 5GB of free space for every user who signs up to use Storage Made Easy and chooses to use the S3 cloud we use for file hosting.

Today we’ll tell you how you can get a further 5GB of free hosting on Amazon S3 and combine it with the 5GB that we offer to give you a whopping 10GB that you can use on Amazon S3.

First sign up for Amazon S3’s free usage Tier which you can do here. This is a little complex (to see the least) so lets walk though the steps to do this:

Fom the initial screen, click on the “sign up now button”. This will take you to the following screen:

Here, you should enter your email address and click the “I am a new user” radio button and then click “Sign in using our secure server”. This will take you to the following screen:

Fill in your details and click “Create account”. This will take you to a screen where you can enter your address details (company or home). You will also need to check that you agree to the Amazon terms of service, and enter the captcha image prior to clicking the “continue” button.

Once this is done you will be take to a confirmation page that tells you that you have created your account and will be sent a confirmation email.

From the confirmation screen above click on the link that says “Simple Storage Service”. This will take you to the Amazon S3 Screen:

From here, click to sign in to Amazon S.3 This will take you to a screen that introduced the Amazon S3 free usage Tier terms. Scroll to the bottom of this screen and enter your credit card details. Your credit card details are used if you go outside of the terms of the free usage, and if you are still using the storage after 1 year. The free usage enables 5 GB of Amazon S3 storage, 20,000 Get Requests, and 2,000 Put Requests*

After your credit card detail are entered you will be asked to confirm your selecrtions, as below:

Once completed you will receive a confirmation that your activation is in process and you will receive and email when this is done.

Once you receive the activation email your S3 storage is available and you can login to your Amazon Web Services Account. On login you will normally be taken to the dashboard view, as below:

From here click the Account link, this will take you to the Account screen. At the account screen you want to click on the security credentials link.

From this page you can access your Amazon Access key and secret key. Click on “show” show the secret key and make a note of both keys.

Now, after a fairly long winded process (to say the least !), you finally have your 5GB free Amazon S3 storage and your Amazon keys. Now, we’ll use this with SME to gain access to your storage and also on registration obtain another free 5GB that is hosted on Amazon S3. You can register on Storage Made Easy by clicking here. From here select the free package that gives your 5GB free on Amazon S3:

After registration you will receive an email which you must activate. After this you can login for the first time you can add the Amazon S3 provider from the DashBoard or from the File Manager interface.

Add Cloud

The ‘add provider’ wizard enables you to select a provider, in this case S3, and the wizard steps through the steps needed to add this.

Add Amazon S3

On the next screen you will be asked to add the Amazon S3 keys that you took not of earlier. Add this and click next. Please be sure not to accidentally copy the keys with spaces at the end as these will count as characters:

Amazon S3 provider wizard

As this account is brand new you will be asked to create what Amazon refer to as a ‘bucket’. Don’t worry too much about this you can think of it as a storage container, and if you wish you can accept the default. If you change it be aware that some bucket names may be taken so you will have think of something unique. Also, you can choose where to host your bucket (choose a region close to you). Don’t worry to much about the storage option right now.

Once you have entered the bucket an moved forward, follow the sync wizard (choose browser sync when asked). There are no files yet to sync so you will end up with a final screen similar to below:

At this point, you now have access to 10GB of file storage on S3, 5GB directly with your S3 keys and 5 GB provided by SME ! Congratulations.

You can choose to use a number of our free OS desktop Cloud Tools to work with your Account and also of course the web based file managers. You can also choose to add other storage clouds which you can access through the same file system. To do this just go to the SME Web DashBoard and choose add a new provider.

Amazon S3 file manager

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