But first, how do I get around?
Well, it’s like your desktop. You can resize any of the frames within the browser window by aligning the cursor over the border and click-hold-drag the borders to the desired position. You can also hide/restore the left pane using the Left Pane button at the extreme left of the toolbar. There are function buttons on the toolbar which are duplicated by key commands of <control> or <option> (depending on your platform) to see a popup of available actions. Note there are different actions available to selections in different panes. Some things only work on selections in the Folder pane on the left, others only work on the main pane in the center. You select/create various repositories (top level directories) with the repository drop down menu in the upper left corner (defaults to My Files). And there’s a full path navigation section below the toolbar and above the main pane for those who like noodling around the olde phasioned way.
Can I see what I have?
Of course you can. There’s an icon view for thumbnails that can be toggled by the display button on the toolbar. There are also viewers for images and video clips. When you select either a still or video image in the main pane, you’ll see the viewer/player display in the lower left pane. Oh, and if you don’t see a lower left pane, follow the instructions above for sizing panes and, voila, there it is. Let us know if you run into a file type that doesn’t display or play so we can expand the ever evolving list of supported types.
Can I upload a bunch of files at once?
Yes, there are a couple of options. The Basic Upload is perfect for single files, or groups of files that will go in the same MediaCloud folder. You can drag and drop or use the buttons in the popup menu to prompt you through file location. Remember to keep the browser active (can be minimized) until the upload completes. Closing the browser window will kill the upload. That’s how web apps work. What about uploading a complex nested folder structure all at one time? That’s the second option. The Advanced Upload gives the additional functionality of uploading a complex nested file structure all at once. You’ll need to have Java enabled in the browser, and that can be an annoying bit to configure in some systems, but once you have that you follow the same drag and drop or button prompted file location process. In addition you can pause/resume large uploads and you can observe progress and transfer speed. Oh, and don’t worry about file size, there’s no limit.
What do I have to do to take advantage of accelerated file transfer with MediaCloud?
Nothing. It’s built into the web app. And it also works when you share files via email links to folks outside of MediaCloud. It doesn’t get max benefit when using outside ftp repositories, though. We can’t drill into other peoples systems on the fly to pull that off. Just have them join MediaCloud if you work with them a lot.
Can I share a file with someone who’s not a member of MediaCloud?
Absolutely not. ….Just kidding! Of course you can. You can share files as a stream or download. You can set a time limit on how long the share is available. And you can assign a password. Here’s how it’s done. First select the file in the main pane. Then you can click the share button on the top tool bar (green icon, white interconnect image) and a popup will give you a place to set number of days until expiration (optional), password (also optional) and generates a link. You can click the letter icon and, if your mail app is accessible via the web browser, an email message template with the link prepopulated will pop up. Edit to taste and send. You can also create your own email, text message or tweet and paste the link there and send.
How can someone add a comment about file?
There is a Comment field for each file. You can find it by selecting the file in the main pane and then looking a the lower left pane for Details about the file. You may have to scroll down within the pane to see the Comment field. Click on it and a popup window will present for you to type in a comment. At present it is only one field, so you if you open an existing comment, whatever you type is considered an update and will replace what’s there.
How do I find stuff I’m having trouble finding?
Easy, as long as its really there. If you look a the full path section below the toolbar and above the large pane, you’ll see an icon of a magnifying glass. Click that and a search field presents itself that’s tied to whatever folder you have selected in the left pane. If you notice, on the right side you can select searching by filename or comments field (for example search for “approved”). Just remember to select the correct folder in the left pane or you may miss something that’s in a higher level or separate branch of the tree.
Can I move files to/from an existing ftp site?
Yes. Simply add a repository. There’s a pull down menu on the upper left corner of the interface, under the toolbar and above the folder pane on the left side. Selecting add repository kicks off a popup window to select ftp which in turn gives you a place to enter the ftp credentials of the site you want to connect to. By the way, let us know if there are other systems you connect to regularly. If they have an API, we can integrate them into your MediaCloud experience.
…and move/copy between repositories?
You can move or copy files between repositories using the copy and move buttons on the toolbar. Copy makes an additional copy to be placed in the new repository, move does not leave a copy on the originating side. Just select the file in the main pane, then select the action in the toolbar. Best practice is to move between folders that you are using for your own project organization, and copy when the destination folder is shared with others.
How do I get stuff back down once it’s up there?
The same way you got it up there…sort of. There’s a button on the toolbar labeled….wait for it… Download. So after you select a file or group of files in the main pane, click the download button from the toolbar and you’re on your way. If you click on a folder in the main pane and then click the download button, a zip file is created and downloaded all in a single seamless process.
I want to have a workspace available for a team member to upload and download files to/from?
MediaCloud was launched as a broad, independent, community based collaboration platform. The idea being that members could work on multiple projects with a variety/mixture of other members from a single sign-on. Team members outside the community can use the 30 day free trial to participate as well. We are looking at a Enterprise or Pro tier that would support private branding as well as a company account with employees/vendors/clients locked into a single account by company or project. As we continue to evolve the features/pricing, we welcome any feedback in this area. Email firstname.lastname@example.org
What if I want to do something you haven’t covered here?
Try it. You won’t break anything. And if you don’t get the result you expected email email@example.com – tell us what you want to do, and what happened that you didn’t expect.
And if all else fails, try:
1) refresh the browser,
2) restart the browser,
3) check to make sure all your system updates are up to date,
4) restart the system
5) try another system
anytime: email firstname.lastname@example.org