Chrome OS has really great, tight integration with Google Drive in the native file explorer. This is good news if you’re like me, and you use Google Drive to organize your entire digital life. It’s not so great if you’re already heavily invested in another cloud storage service like Dropbox, or if lots of people routinely add files to a shared folder in Dropbox.
Luckily, there’s a solution that’s easy to implement and will allow you to access your entire Dropbox through the file explorer in Chrome OS, just like Google Drive. To do this, you’ll need a CloudHQ account – for those who don’t remember, this is a cloud service that lets you keep various cloud storage services in sync, without having to install any extra software on your computer. So, for example, you can sync SkyDrive and Box, SugarSync and Dropbox, or – in this case – Dropbox and Google Drive.
I already reviewed CloudHQ a few weeks ago and found it to be fantastic, although you’ll have to shell out some dough in order to unlock all the great features of this cloud syncing service. Luckily, CloudHQ also has a great refer-a-friend program, and if you get enough people to sign up, you’ll receive a premium account free for life.
So anyway, once you’re signed up for CloudHQ, just follow these steps to “natively mount” Dropbox to your Chromebook or Chromebox:
- Create a folder in Google Drive called “Dropbox.”
- In your CloudHQ online console, click on the Synchronize tab, and then Add Synchronization Pair.
- Select Google Drive, and then select your folder called “Dropbox.”
- Next, select your Dropbox account, and make sure you select the entire account.
- Ensure you have two way sync enabled, and select the option to replicate deletions.
- Select the option to enable real-time synchronization, and that’s it!
Congratulations! Your Dropbox account is now integrated with your Google Drive, and is available in the Google Drive web interface, mobile apps, and your Chrome OS file explorer. Any changes you make in Google Drive will be replicated within minutes in your Dropbox account, and vice versa – this includes your shared folders. So, for example, if someone places a file in a shared Dropbox folder and asks you to review it, you’ll be able to retrieve it from your Dropbox folder in the file explorer on your Chromebook.
You can also use this technique to “mount” other services like SkyDrive or Sugarsync to your Chromebook, too – just make sure you have enough storage in your Google Drive account.