How to Access SkyDrive From Ubuntu Desktop

We have covered how you can access Dropbox, Google Drive, and Box on your Ubuntu desktop. One storage provider that is missing from the list is SkyDrive. The reason is because there is no desktop client for Linux and it doesn’t allow you to mount as WebDav. However, with a third party tool and a little workaround, you can easily access SkyDrive from Ubuntu desktop and sync your files with it.

The third-party tool that we are using is Linux Cloud Tool by StorageMadeEasy (previously known as SME). For those who are not aware, StorageMadeEasy is a cloud data broker platform that allows you to access various cloud providers, either on the Web or via the desktop client for computer and mobile devices. Setting up an account with StorageMadeEasy is free and it comes with 5GB of free storage space on Amazon S3.

The whole configuration is pretty simple, even though it is not as straightforward. There are several steps that you need to do:

1. First, register an account at StorageMadeEasy. There are plenty of premium packages that you can choose from, but all you really need is the free account located at the bottom of the page.

2. Once you have completed the registration and verification, log into your account and click “Manage Cloud Providers”.

sme-manage-cloud-providers

3. Click “Add new provider” and select “SkyDrive API” from the list.

sme-select-skydrive-api

4. Give a name to the cloud provider and authorize SkyDrive API access (you will be prompted to login to your Microsoft account).

5. Next, download the Linux Cloud Tool and install it in your Ubuntu. Note that the SME Cloud Tool is only free for Linux. Windows and Mac users will have to upgrade to the Personal Cloud package before they can download the desktop client.

6. Open the desktop client. Select the server and enter your login and password.

sme-desktop-client

Next, create a folder call SME in your Home folder and select this in the folder list. Click the big “Mount” button.

Open your file manager and navigate to the SME folder, you should see a new “SkyDrive” folder within. Open it and you will find all the files you stored on your SkyDrive account. Any file you place to it will also be synced back to SkyDrive.

To unmount the folder, simply click the “Unmount” button in the Linux Cloud Tool.

I managed to retain my 25GB SkyDrive account before it was reduced to 7GB for the rest of the user, but one thing I have not been able to do all the while is to access it directly from my Ubuntu desktop. Thanks to Linux Cloud Tool, accessing SkyDrive from Ubuntu is now a breeze. I am still hoping for a native SkyDrive app for Linux, though that is almost impossible. Until then, this is the best solution you can get.

Image credit: cloud computing by BigStockPhoto

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