Why the GMail Drive shell extension?
Because it works!
There's a reason why Google has so many PHD's working for them. Aside from taking over the world, they give out great products like GMail, Google Earth, Google Talk and many more useful and practical applications that are constantly being used. Well, software developer Bjarke Viksoe proves that the guys at Google don't think of everything (but we're glad they try though).
With the GMail Drive shell extension, the nifty little tool creates a virtual drive on your computer that directly links your hard drive and GMail account. So if there's ever a time when you need to access an important document, a pic or even a movie, all you need is this little handy program to view things when you can't access your computer.
If you constantly get bored of using Google's methodology for uploading pics (Picasa) and you need a quick way to get folders, documents and files, definitely use the GMail Drive shell extension. It works with nearly every possible file type, but there seem to be other issues that this GMail Drive shell extension has left out. The simple truth
Lets go over the program as a whole. The download and install went smoothly, but when I actually loaded the drive and there wasn't anything inside, I started to worry I did something wrong. Although the program links your GMail hard drive and your GMail account, it seems to lack the synchronization quality programs of this sort usually have. It does NOT import any of your previous pictures, word document, or any other attachment that you have saved in your acct. when you first brows the hard drive. So don't be surprised when there isn't anything there.
The interface is somewhat confusing for people who expect something to happen when opening the program, but when I started adding things to my GMail directory, I noticed that everything becomes
intricately linked with the GMail account almost instantaneously. I was pleased with the aspect that whenever I added something I could see it, access it and at the same time download and use what I had just saved.How well does it really work?
With the GMail Drive shell extension, there were some issues that could become problematic.
The use of 'folders' in your Gmail directory is only good on the user workstation rather than in your email acct.. After adding a folder to my directory and adding files within that folder, I was disappointed to see that I received every file that was in the folder as a different email and attachment. So, aside from aesthetic quality on ones own computer, you still receive 6 separate emails and attachments if you have 1 folder with 5 things inside.
The Filename length (including paths) is limited to 40 characters, which shouldn't really be a problem to most users, but since Google limits the attachment size to 10Mb, this restriction is currently also enforced in the shell extension as well.
Your inbox will soon become excessively filled with files (depending on how many you originally sent) and clutter will soon arise if you aren't careful with the amount of information you send yourself.
Another slight inconvenience is that when the file are linked to your GMail acct., the file types that are transferred change file names and file types. The original file type and name are still in the subject line, but the attachment itself has been altered. For an avid computer user, this might not be a big deal since most know how to rename and change a filetype, but for the less advanced user, this might be a bit of a challenge. Is it worth the download?
Although there are some small annoyances with the program, I'd have to say that the product itself is quite practical.
I for one hate to wait when trying to send an attachment to myself and receive the error message that my 'operation could not be completed at this time.' For those of you who do NOT want to try again later, I highly recommend this program. The speed of transfers is truly worth the smaller hassles you have to deal with. If renaming a file type and its name is all you have to deal with, the program's main ability will overcome these minor hassles.
There's a contact link in the help file where you can report bugs and contact Bjarke Viksoe himself. Overall, this is a practical product that will only improve with later releases. Recap
Pro's: Great speed in transfers, takes any filetype, easy to use interface, an gives you an easier way to merge your files
Con's: Confusing beginning, could easily become a cluster of emails, no automatic synchronization of previous attachments, changes file types.
Check out the pics below to get a better idea of the GMail Drive shell extension