Accessing SkyDrive from your iPad with iSMEStorage

Despite all the storage services out there, and I include Google Docs, Amazon S3, Box.net, and DropBox, in these, Microsoft SkyDrive takes some beating. For starters you get a whopping 25GB of free storage, and with the recent Office Live integration, you essentially have the ability to create and edit documents.

Just as with Google Docs, we see a lot of business users use SkyDrive as well as individual professionals / consumers. Like the other cloud platforms we support, we add a lot over and above what you get from Microsoft SkyDrive if you use this with the SMEStorage Cloud Platform.

There has not been an App that supported SkyDrive on the iPhone until we released iSMEStorage, and there has not been an App that allowed you to use your 25 GB of file storage on the iPad until we enhanced iSMEStorage to support the iPad. We’ve put together a video demo below so you can see for yourself.

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Adobe Air example of using SME API’s

The SMEStorage multi-cloud API has been used in a variety of tools. It is what is used in our iPad/iPhone, BlackBerry, Windows, Linux and Mac clients. From a language perspective this means Objective C, Java (J2ME), .net, Delphi, PERL, Ruby and of course HTML and PHP. The API is very rich and targetting this API means you can address over 10 storage clouds by binding to one API.

To see how easy it was to use for other users we gave the API to a company and asked them to create an Adobe Air mockup that used the API. What they came back with in a short space of time was impressive. You can download the Air client here. It is fully functional and supports a lot of of the functionality of the site.

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Lite Cloud File Manager updated

We’ve updated the Lite Cloud File Manager interface. We know lots of users use this as their entry point into using Amazon S3, RackSpace Cloud Files, Google Docs etc as it is quicker to load than the rich Ajax File Manager. The Ajax File Manager loads all the information about the cloud files into one file tree whereas the Lite File Manager only provides information for the directory structure that is currently being used.

User wanted a quicker  way to access documents across 1 or more clouds from this interface, as well as a full search capability, ability to access music across all clouds to stream music files whilst browsing, manage business groups etc.

We listened, and the interface has been totally redesigned so we hope you like it !

Cloud File Manager

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Using SME with your Mac. Upload your Cloud Files direct from the Finder

For many of use in the office using Mac’s we’ve yearned for some tighter integration with SMEStorage and the Mac. You can choose to use the Windows explorer via Crossover or WINE with the Mac and it works nicely, and you can also use the Firefox plug-in which also works really well, but having OS level integration is always nice.

Snow Leopard has enhanced the integration of the automator services into the OS which makes it much easier to provide contextual functionality.

Using this method there is now available an add-in for users of SMEStorage to be able to upload their files directly from the Mac to their chosen cloud of choice (and we now support over 10 storage clouds), and after the file has been uploaded a unique link for the file will be copied to the clipboard.

You can view a video below that show this working with Google Docs:

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SME Multi Cloud Storage Web Platform enhanced and now supports over 10 Storage Clouds

This is our first post of the new year and in the period between December and February we have been very busy indeed. The SMEStorage web platform has been given a total new look and feel and many new features have been added. We’ve also added support for Microsoft SkyDrive, Microsoft Live Mesh and Google Docs storage clouds.

Our focus is on providing as support for as many commercial storage clouds as possible and enabling you to combine these clouds into a virtual view and providing enhanced features and services on top of the clouds we support. The picture below gives a good overview of the SMEStorage.com platform.

SMEStorage Platform overview

We’ve also put together a video to highlight some of the features and services that are visible to users of clouds that we support via the SMEStorage platform below. Click play and then wait 4 to 5 seconds for the video to load. It is best viewed in full screen:

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Integrating SME multi-cloud API with Simple Cloud API from Zend

We were excited when we read about the Simple Cloud API from Zend. An interoperable Cloud API accessible via PHP was something we were keen to see if we could integrate it’s storage API with our own Multi-Cloud API which is based on REST but which has different language examples and bindings, including PHP.


After examining the SimpleCloud API it is clear to us that the storage API piece, as is, was limited compared to our own multi-cloud storage API whose aim is to provide an abstraction layer with file system functionality coupled with service functionality, such as the ability to backup email, backup contacts from social clouds, provide cloud sync and failover capabilities, encryption facilities etc. The Simple Cloud API is focused on providing access to clouds, with simple Create, Read, Delete functionality, and does not necessarily abstract the way the clouds are accessed or manipulated. 


There are two ways in which we could integrate with Zend. We could take advantage of their libraries to add support for clouds supported by the SimpleCloud API that we do not support, or we could integrate in a way that enables the SimpleCloud API to take advantage of the 10 plus clouds we support, by providing our own SimpleCloud SMEStorage plug-in.


It looks as there will be a fair bit of work to take advantage of the SimpleCloud API in our architecture.  The Current version of the SimpleCloud API doesn’t allow the streaming downloading of files. This would require us to create a set of classes that will extend the Simple Cloud classes and would have new methods related to streaming downloading and other methods that will return some information to use with streaming upload. There are other issues also, such as limitations on listing all buckets in S3. It only works with the bucket that the user provides in the settings.


Despite all of this the SImpleCloud API will be here to stay so we intend to move forward with our integration to it, and it is on our roadmap. 


Stay tuned !

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