There are plenty of cloud storage options for Mac OS X. Most of the cloud storage providers, like Dropbox, Google Drive, OneDrive, etc., come with a desktop client that allows you to easily sync your files from the Finder. In Yosemite, Apple made it even easier to sync with their iCloud drive as it is integrated in every single part of the OS. If you are using Amazon S3 to back up your files, you will find that it doesn’t integrate well with the Finder. You will have to use a third-party application to upload/download to S3. In this article, I am going to show you how you can mount Amazon S3 in the Finder so you can easily move files around and back them up.
There are a few apps that can mount Amazon S3 in the Finder. They are not free, but they do come with a free trial so you can test them out and see if you like them.
Use ExpanDrive to mount Amazon S3
ExpanDrive, as its name implies, expands your hard drive to support cloud storage. ExpanDrive supports a variety of cloud storage services, such as Dropbox, Amazon S3, Google Drive, etc., and unlike other cloud applications that act as a standalone file transfer tool, ExpanDrive integrates with Finder and it is just like a USB drive connected to your Mac.
To get started, download ExpanDrive and install it to your Mac. After the installation, you should find an icon in the menu bar. Click on it to reveal all the cloud storage services that it supports.
Click on “Amazon S3” and enter the Access Key and secret. Remember to click “More Option” and check the box next to “Reconnect at login.”
Click Connect. That’s it. You should now see your Amazon S3 folder in Finder.
ExpanDrive costs $49.95, but you can use the free trial for 14 days.
Use Transmit to mount Amazon S3
Another app that we can use is the popular Transmit app. Transmit is more well-known as a file transfer application for FTP, SFTP server, Amazon S3 and WebDav. It also comes with a lesser known disk feature that can mount Amazon S3 to the Finder, and it works even when Transmit is not running.
Download and install Transmit in your Mac.
Launch Transmit. On the right panel, select “S3” at the top and enter your Access key and secret.
Click the “Mount as Disk” button. That’s it. Amazon S3 will now show up in your Finder. Unlike ExpanDrive which mounts Amazon S3 like an external drive, Transmit mounts Amazon S3 as a folder in the “Computer” directory.
Transmit comes with a 7-day free trial and its license key costs $34.
There are many apps that allow you to connect to Amazon S3, but to mount it in Finder, the above two apps will do the job well. There used to be an S3FS Fuse module that you could use for free, but it has not been updated and is no longer compatible with Mac OS X. Do let us know if you come across other methods to mount Amazon S3 in your Finder.