There are some awesome features that G Suite Basic and Business offer. The advent of Google Drive and the Google Drive client for Mac/PC were big game changers, especially when it came to being able to access your files from anywhere on any device. Google has now enhanced that ability with Drive File Stream.
Challenges with Google Drive for Mac/PC
One of the challenges that Google Drive had, and specifically with the Google Drive client for Mac/PC, was that you had to sync the files/folders that you wanted to be able to work on to your Mac or PC, or use some type of Chrome Extension like the Google Drive plug-in for Microsoft Office to directly access Google Drive for web and load the data into the application. Kind of a pain and it may have warranted you syncing a plethora of files and folders to your workstation, taking up valuable drive space on your computer. Well no more!
Drive File Stream
Introducing Drive File Stream! Drive File Stream is a new app that allows you to access your Google Drive files directly from your Mac or PC, without using up all of your hard drive space. Drive File Stream doesn’t require you to download your files first in order to access them from your computer. Instead, when you need to view or edit a file, it automatically streams from the cloud, on-demand. Teams will spend less time now waiting for files to sync and worrying about disk space.
What if I’m not connected to the internet?
You can still access files even if you’re not online. As with Google Drive for Mac/PC, you can still select files or folders that you want to access offline at anytime. The files that you are likely to work on from your Mac or PC become available in the background intelligently, making it much quicker to access them later.
Access files in File Stream directly from my desktop apps
With Drive File Stream, you can work with Drive files directly from the apps you’re used to, like Microsoft Word and Adobe Photoshop. Any changes you make to files in those apps are saved automatically to Drive and can be accessed from any of your devices later.
Benefits of Drive File Stream
- Frees up disk space and network bandwidth
- Decreases sync time
- Minimizes the amount of company data stored on users’ hard drives
- Access files directly from apps you use like MS Word, Excel, or Adobe Photoshop
- Access files in Team Drives
- Stream files on demand
- Sync selected files and folders in My Drive folder
Will Google Drive for Mac/PC go away?
Yep. So you’ll want to move to File Stream prior to the dates below. Google stated on their official G Suite Blog that “With this launch, Google Drive for Mac/PC is officially deprecated. It will no longer be supported starting on December 11th, 2017, and it will shut down completely on March 12th, 2018. We encourage you to use Drive File Stream.”
OK, I’m sold! How do I install Drive File Stream?
Installing Drive File Stream is pretty straightforward. If you are receiving the below pop up on your computer, click on the “Install Drive File Stream” button and then follow the below instructions. Please note, you will want to disconnect and uninstall Google Drive for Mac/PC after installing and verifying that Drive File Stream is working IF the Drive File Stream installation doesn’t remove the Google Drive for Mac/PC client automatically.
As always, if you have questions or want to drop us a line, feel free to do so. We’d love to chat with you!
Steps to install:
After downloading the client, clock on the installation file to start the installation process
In the “Sign in to Google Drive” window, enter your G Suite email address
Next, enter your G Suite password
NOTE: If you have 2 step verification enabled, just follow the instructions – if not, goto next step
In the permission window, click on the “Allow” button
Once the installation is complete, click on the “Close” button
Verify Drive File Stream is working by access Finder or Windows File Explorer
If the Google Drive for Mac/PC client isn’t uninstalled automatically, disconnect and uninstall it by following these instructions
Once completed, verify that the data in the Google Drive folder is on the web by accessing Google Drive via your web browser. Once you have verified the data is there, you can delete the old Google Drive folder. You may choose to keep the folder around for a few days just to make sure.