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Showing posts from December, 2008

Cloud Agent for Windows

It is Christmas day and Merry Christmas!

I was reading on the web and saw an article from ReadWriteWeb titled "the rise of cloud agents". I was looking for a category for the Gladinet Cloud Desktop. Immediately, I knew the Cloud Desktop is a kind of Cloud Agent. Now I have a category.

What Gladinet does is a new kind of mashup. When people talked about mashup in 2008, the scope was still a web-2-web mashup, trying to create a hybrid of multiple web contents into one. In 2009, with the release of Gladinet Cloud Desktop and similar kind of applications, people will start talking about mashup of Web + Operating System semantics. Gladinet was an early one, it won't be the only one.

As a Cloud Agent sitting in the Windows, Gladinet delivers online storages to Windows. it *mashdown* the web applications into Windows Explorer. It is time to talk about a cloud agent without the sandbox of a browser. Web without a Browser? Isn't this web 3.0 stuff? Eventually Gladinet will expan…

My Personal Cloud

One of the important concept behind the Gladinet initiative is a personal cloud and how to present the personal cloud to an end user in an easy and consistent way.

An Internet savvy user nowdays use different services and store personal data in different places .

It started when people have multiple PCs (including home, work and on the road), a bunch of solutions came out, such as GotoMyPC, VPN to solve the remote access problem.

Then there were Flickr, Picasa and other online solutions. People were afraid of putting tax record or birth certificates online. So online photo storage services led the charge. Also value-add services like Google Docs, Zoho online suites are coming out as online applications backed by online storage services.

Slowly people are more willing to put more documents online as backups in case something like Katrina happens. Solutions like Carbonite, Mozy came out to help backing up local folders to online storage services.

Then a one way backup becomes multiple way sy…

Cloud Desktop and Netbook

If there is a certain kind of hardware that needs Gladinet software the most, it is a netbook.

I recently bought an Acer Aspire One netbook. Its portability and long battery life stand out. It is slow compared to my main dev machine. I don't compile C code on the netbook. So it is OK.

It reminded me so much about the thin clients when we were at Citrix. Netbook is a thin client to the web. Now with the cloud services live outside browsers and onto the Desktop, the value of a netbook increased dramatically. It is not just an email terminal nor just a browser app.

Imaging anywhere I go, pop open the netbook and the Amazon S3 storage is right there. If I need to read a document off Amazon S3, I can right click and say Open with Google Docs. If it has the standard (Premium) version of the GCD running, I can even connect back home and visit documents sitting in my home PC.

Imaging the speed of a netbook tomorrow is as fast as my dev machine today. Imaging broadband hotspot is everywhere.…

SkyDrive 25G Support

Cloud Desktop build 47 was released today. The source control number is 2086. Build 44 (Beta 1)'s source control number is 2046. So it takes us 40 check-ins to get SkyDrive support back to work again.

It is still not completed yet. For example, public folder or folder with shared property is empty. That will take another week to fix. Also if you open the SkyDrive folder quicker than the background login process finishes, you will see access denied and empty page. These are all fixable next week. Anyway it is workable now and will get better over time.

During the SkyDrive fix, we also fixed one issue related to ampersand '&' in Google Docs. When you have folder name or filename that has '&' in, you weren't able to mount Google Docs virtual folder before and now you can. We will shift the focus to Google Docs this week and fix major issues in beta 1.

There is also an Amazon S3 support regression that will be fixed shortly in build 48. If you are not using Am…

From Beta 1 to Beta 2

Cloud Desktop Beta 1 launch last week was good. Lots of user feedback. Many sites covered us and linked to us. Last time I checked, Yahoo Site Explorer reported 861 links from external sites and 140 links to the download page directly. From 0 to 1001 in a week? Not bad.

It accomplished several things:
(1) the message was out, binding Cloud Services onto the Desktop Operating System is something useful and it is something user wanted. It proved that we are in the right direction.

(2) Established the web site to reach out to the users; Established the feedback and support mechanism for users to come back to us. Through this kind of a positive loop back from us to users and back to us again, we will improve.

(3) Strengthen the connections to the partners.

(4) Now we have a business plan, just need to write it down. I was told once two things to look out for start ups. Without a business plan is definitely bad. Sticking to the plan won't be too good either because a start up need to consta…

Gladinet & Logo

During the startup phase, different job roles. We are merging the Cloud Computing with Desktop Operating System. The original idea of the logo is more like a cloud with colors in it, meaning it is so colorful in the cloud. It is just that developers don't know how to draw clouds, we know how to draw ellipse ...

Gladinet is glad + internet, thus glad-i-net. means when the internet is the computer, it is good.

The Gladinet Cloud Desktop was called Gladinet client internally during Tech Preview. It was because back then the stand-alone version and the standard version are mixed together, so it was indeed a client application. Now with the separation, the stand-alone is no longer a client to anyone. It is a bridge to the cloud services directly. Standard version will remain a client to the Gladinet servers.

Cloud Desktop could be confusing initially, cloud is way high, the desktop is way low. Then I met Dan and explained all the Cloud meets the Desktop stuff. Now a better spin becomes, w…

Security for Cloud Desktop

If the Internet is the computer, if the cloud touches down on the desktop, the security will be the first thing to protect. How is my credential stored? Is it safe?

In the current Beta 1, the credentials are stored in the user's local profile (Documents & Settings) with Windows Data Protection. If someone can logon to your machine and get access to your documents. This is vulnerable. But if someone can physically control your machine, what is not vulnerable?

To make it not vulnerable even when the PC is compromised, we need 2 factor protection with an optional password. By using Windows Data Protection with the additional password, it could offer more comfort. However, your IE remembered password may not be password protected. If you Firefox is not using a master password, the remembered password is vulnerable too. If you write down your password in Notepad ... All 1 factor protections depending on a windows logon prompt are vulnerable if the threat model includes the PC being c…

Where the Clouds meet the groud

Where the clouds meet the ground, a new horizon of cloud computing appears. This tag line today appears on the Gladinet Cloud Desktop download page.

I guess different sites link directly to the download page and that becomes the top landing page of Gladinet.

The download requests are still keep coming in. Last time I checked, the download is around 6,600 now.

People like the clouds meet the desktop idea. It is practical and solves a lot of problems, mostly around online storages at this time. How to move between local documents and online documents. How to move between online documents between different providers. How to move between online documents between 2 accounts of the same provider.

Good to see it is useful.

SkyDrive, SkyDrive

I thought posting on the download page and the support forum were good enough.

Good News and Bad News.
Bad News is that SkyDrive increased to 25G and the current build is not compatible.

Good News: Once we make it compatible again, you have 25G SkyDrive from Windows Explorer.

Very exciting! Let's see...

Related Link: Download Page.

Feedback answers

In Beta1 standalone verision, feedback link from the Gladinet Cloud Desktop is one way only. We don't store any user information so we don't have your email or contact to send answer back.

We decide to put the questions in feedback in our forum, under FAQ. If you ever ask us any question in feedback without your email address, you can check the FAQ to see whether your question is answered there.

http://www.gladinet.com/forum/Default.aspx?g=topics&f=2

Cloud Desktop, WoW!

It is beta 1 software, the quality is not yet release level. Yet the download requests just keep on coming in. In 3 days, over 4500 copies were downloaded.

The idea of a "Cloud Desktop" is so well received by the tech community. Everybody gets it. From the users' feedback, it feels like many were waiting for this to happen for so long. When the Cloud meets the Desktop, when the cloud meets the ground, a new horizon appears (credit Dan for this tag line during our lunch). Cloud Computing is no longer some behind the scene thing. It can now be on anyone's desktop and it can be everyone's daily user experience.

Compared to the existing art, the cloud services touch the web server level, then the web server converts it into HTML presentation in the browser, then the browser to you. For some cloud services, especially online storages, going into OS makes much more sense.

I guess the excitement is going to keep on for a while. Then the issues and enhancement requests will…