Jun 012015

In Part 3, I went over using Google Drive and cleaning up your music files.

Previously in Part 1, I looked at the steps to go through for cleaning up your Android phone.

In Part 2, I covered setting up Google Play Music and Google Drive.

Deprecated Google Drive API

On April 20th, 2015 Google shut down their old API for accessing Google Drive. grive and grive-tools from The Fan Club, which I recommended in part 2 of this series, have not been updated to use the new API at this time. The indicator application will fail silently, and unless you check Google Drive or the log files, you won’t realise files are not being replicated.

There are a few options available.

The team at webupd8 have released grive2, which uses the new API and replaces the old grive seamlessly. This is a recent release, and I haven’t tested it yet as I have already opted for the second option documented below.

If you want to use grive2, there are a few steps

sudo add-apt-repository --remove ppa:thefanclub/grive-tools
sudo add-apt-repository ppa:nilarimogard/webupd8
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install grive

This will however remove the ppa that uses grive-indicator, but not remove grive-tools. (Well, you probably don’t need to remove The Fan Club ppa, as the new version of grive has a higher version.) If you already have a .grive file in your Google Drive directory you won’t need to do any set up. Otherwise, run grive -a and it will take you through the steps for permission.

After this, the grive-tools indicator should work the same1.


As documented here in ask Ubunutu, there are plenty of options available to replace The Fan Club’s grive-tools. I went with insync because it looks good, is actively developed, works on lots of platforms and allows for multiple Google Drive accounts (which I have a requirement for with my other project.)

Insync is free for 14 days, and then you can buy the:

  1. one user version for $20
  2. professional version at $20/year
  3. enterprise at $20/user/year with a minimum of 5 users.

Go to the download page, read the instructions and get going. It has

  • a good interface with a feed of files and progress indicators
  • bi direction that detects new files on Google Drive and downloads them, and uploads files from local
  • Google Docs become a URL link for nautilus that opens a browser
  • integration with nautilus

When you install insync, make sure you install it with

sudo apt-get install insync insync-nautilus

so you get the nautilus integration. If you use another file manager, change nautilus as required.

It also seems faster than grive.

I’ve used insync for a few months now and found it invaluable when my hard disk crashed recently. I used it to download my deja-dup backups and then restored my whole home directory on the new drive I installed with a fresh version of Ubuntu 15.04.

So far, I’m pretty happy with insync. So far …

1. I say should because I haven’t tested this.