Cloudup Makes File Sharing Incredibly Easy

Cloudup is a file sharing service that was acquired by Automattic on September 25th, 2013. Their goal is to make file sharing “simple and beautiful.” Not having any experience with Dropbox, Cloudup was amazingly easy to set up and start using. In the past, I used FTP to upload images I wanted to share to a folder I had access to. This was a cumbersome approach to file sharing but it worked.

Installation Of The Cloudup App

Cloudup supports Mac and Windows for the desktop while iOS and Android apps are available for mobile devices. The installer is 28MB in size which makes for a quick download. Once installed, you’ll need to link the app to your Cloudup account.

Cloudup After Account Has Been Linked

After the account has been linked, you can access the dashboard and preferences by clicking on the small Cloudup icon located within the Taskbar.

Using Cloudup

There are two primary ways to upload content. You can either drag files to the taskbar icon or click on the icon, then select Upload/Browse. When a file is uploaded, the app will automatically open the file in a new browser window and copy the unique URL to the clipboard for easy sharing. From within this browser window, you can choose whether the image is public or private, edit the image title, or add a password.

Cloudup Editor After Uploading A File
Cloudup Editor After Uploading A File

In its simplest form, it only takes two steps to share a file. The first is to upload it. The second is to paste the URL to whomever you want to have access to the file. Also, users don’t have to wait until the entire file is uploaded before sharing the URL.

Free Accounts Limited To 1,000 Items

Cloudup Free Users Limited To 1,000 Items
Cloudup Free Users Limited To 1,000 Items

New users are automatically placed into the free tier. This tier is the only one available at the moment and gives users 1,000 items. According to Matt Mullenweg in a Techcrunch article covering the acquisition, there are no plans to monetize the service.

We think Cloudup is something intrinsically useful to have in the world, and Automattic’s core businesses in WordPress.com, VIP, VaultPress, and Akismet are doing more than well enough for us as a company.

Each item has a maximum size limit of 200MB. Depending on what you’re streaming, this is equal to 200GB of free space. This amount is incredibly generous.

WordPress Media Library Improvements

One of the most exciting things to come out of the acquisition announcement was the fact that the WordPress media library would be improved by leaps and bounds thanks to Cloudup’s technology. One of the major improvements the team would be focusing on is collaborative editing. Similar to how Google docs functions, two authors would be able to work together on a single blog post at the same time using the visual editor.

First WordPress.com Then Jetpack

Users of WordPress.com will be the first to reap the benefits of any WordPress media library improvements. However, thanks to Jetpack, self-hosted WordPress users won’t be far behind. If you don’t use Jetpack, Cloudup can still be used by multiple devices without requiring WordPress.

Will Cloudup Replace The WordPress Media Library?

It’s hard for me to picture WordPress without the media library we’ve used for years. Replacing the media library on WordPress.com with Cloudup makes a lot of sense but I wonder how that change would translate to the self hosted version of WordPress. I asked Matt Mullenweg if Cloudup is something he can see replacing the WordPress media library or would there always be a need to keep things local? His response: “I could see it replacing it“.

What it means to replace the library and how it would work is still unknown. However, when I asked WPTavern Twitter followers what they thought about the idea of replacing the library with something hosted in the cloud, here are a few of their responses:

Matt has been a vocal supporter of the idea to own your own data. It’s one of the many reasons so many people use WordPress so I doubt any media library replacement would go against that ethos.

Conclusion

Cloudup is awesome. It’s the simplest way to share files I’ve come across. It’s also lightning fast. After gaining access, consider installing the Cloudup oEmbed plugin to show Cloudup hosted files within a post without using any special embed code.

22 Comments


    1. I’ve never used Google Drive so I can’t answer that question.

      Report


    2. Google Drive is fine if you’re tied into Google’s ecosystem. If all you want is to quickly share files, however, Drive is much more than you need. IMO, Cloudup is to file storage as Imgur is to image hosting: simple and effective.

      Report


  1. Other than the potential ability for Media on WordPress, what is the advantage of Cloudup over Dropbox? That’s as easy as a drag from one file into the “Dropbox”. Is there a limit to the size of the file? Free Dropbox is based not on number of files but on the size limit of all the files. Am interested but not eager yet. I don’t want to end up with umpteen cloud services similar to the umpteen USB keys I now have. Have you noticed that the USB keys just don’t have any space to write on the even a short phrase as to what’s on it? :-)

    Report


    1. As per the post, each file that is uploaded to Cloudup has a 200MB limit. But each of your 1,000 items can be 200MB in size. That’s where the 200GB of potential free space comes from.

      I’ve never used Dropbox but it certainly looks like it’s pretty easy to use just like Cloudup. In this case, Automattic owns Cloudup, not Dropbox so that’s one distinct advantage.

      Report


      1. First I hope I’m not spamming this topic too much, but Dropbox’ (I actually prefer copy.com) enormous advantage is it hasn’t got a file (amount) limit, which means it can easily be used to backup without archiving things first (WordPress 3.8 currently contains 1162 files). Not even talking about using services like Git.

        Also it comes with still some slightly odd way of revisioning control.

        Dropbox and Cloudup have different things in mind when it comes to storage, but still, above can be viewed as an advantage.

        Report


  2. I could see using the CloudUp hosted solution in addition to or as an alternative to the default media library, however, I don’t think it can ever replace it. Many people won’t want to host their files elsewhere and many large corporations who may be looking at WP will have policies prohibiting it. For your average blogger or small site, though, it may be an easier way to work with media and allow some strain of loading resources all from the same server.

    Report


    1. That’s the type of attitude I generally expected when I wrote the post, discussing the idea. As I said, Matt is a strong advocate of owning your own data so I see no reason as to why he would go against that with replacing the media library with something that would be completely in the cloud, third-party. Even if Cloudup is owned by Automattic, it’s a third-party.

      Report


  3. I absolutely love the idea. Web hosts cringe when they see tons of images being served and dynamically loaded constantly. Certainly saves us resources for those on shared hosting.

    Report


    1. @Jeff, yea I agreed with you. I love the idea and since it’s own by automattic, I believe we are in safe hands. But I’m not voting for replacing the media library. No!

      Report


  4. I would love to see a plugin for syncing the media library with CloudUp that had a seamless offline mode like Google Drive or Dropbox. If done right, it could make it radically easier to move between local and remote environments.

    Report


    1. Your comment is in line with Jeff Matson’s above. What you describe would be very cool but I can tell you right now, I’d already be way over the 1,000 item limit :)

      Also, it would be great to make it easier to move between local and remote environments without having to rely on Search and Replace.

      Report


  5. Looks like an interteresting solution for wordpress.com hosted websites. However, isn’t this something wordpress.com already handles under its own domain? (Which can be the reason why. DMCA policies could kill a company within a month)

    Also, it looks like a great option to backup large files.

    For selfhosted websites (wordpress.org)?
    Included as an option into Jetpack, sure. Brought as a plugin, sure. Included as an option for selfhosted websites, another sure.

    As a full replacement for the current (selfhosted) media library, absolutely not.

    First, there’s a huge trust issue. Will Cloudup (as a 3rd party solution) still be there after a year, 3 years? Rapidshare(.de) would be a great example.
    Also, WakeMate can be included to this list. (Don’t know any of its technicalities besides knowing that it was somewhat supported by Automattic. I’ll be happy to comment if I’m completely missing the point here)

    Besides that, if WordPress will make Cloudup as a full (selfhosted) media library replacement the whole idea of “More than just a blogging platform” will be completely gone.

    Report


    1. Another point would be you could only publish 250 images, assuming no other image dimensions are activated.

      Report


  6. Once Jetpack integration is released and you are able to embed media items from your cloudup account, wont that effectively be a simple CDN. Would be very interested to know where the media files will be served from ie single location or multiple locations – if a single location in USA, then that will increase page load times for our European clients. However, the possibilities to expand the service into a full CDN are there and that would be a brilliant inovation.

    As for the comments about people (especially large companies) wanting to “own their data”, then this is no different from any mainstream CDN company.

    Finally, in answer to the person worried whether Automattic will be around in 1 or 3 years time – think we would trust that more than most other businesses !

    Report


  7. Hi Jeffro
    “Each item has a maximum size limit of 200MB. Depending on what you’re streaming, this is equal to 200 GB of free space. This amount is incredibly generous.”

    It is indeed incredibly generous when compared to Dropbox “Dropbox accounts start with 2 GB of free space.”.

    I also note your comment: “…I can tell you right now, I’d already be way over the 1,000 item limit :)”
    Not sure how many items i have.

    Something worth looking at.

    Report


    1. The 200 GB limit (based on 1000 files at the maximum of 200 MB) is incredibly generous but also agree that they will have to reconsider their 1000 file limit – maybe keep the 200 MB max file size, but then have a maximum of either 200 GB or 5000 / 10000 files – whichever limit is reached first

      Report


  8. All the comparisons to Dropbox, Copy.com, etc are a little off the mark. Those are file syncing services (for keeping one’s files synced across multiple devices) and CAN be used for sharing. Cloudup (according to the description on their site at https://cloudup.com/faq) is for streaming (not syncing) media and other types of files to anyone. So, while there may be a little overlap in functionality these are different kinds of services.

    Report


  9. Unfortunately, the invite code has expired. You’ll have to sign up for the private beta and hope to get an invite code.

    Report


  10. It is indeed incredibly generous when compared to Dropbox “Dropbox accounts start with 2 GB of free space.”.

    Report


  11. This amount is incredibly generous. maybe keep the 200 MB max file size, but then have a maximum of either 200 GB or 5000 / 10000 files

    Report

Comments are closed.