When Google Drive finally launched after roughly a million years of waiting, we got desktop clients for Windows and OSX. As usual, poor unrequited Linux was left out in the cold. Google says a Linux client is coming, but why wait? A free open source Google Drive client called Grive has been put together by a third-party developer, and it looks quite nice.
We all know the dedicated Linux fan doesn’t have time to pronounce two words, thus Google Drive becomes Grive. The program is still in the early stages of public availability, and is missing some features like full sync. Instead, you will have to manually refresh to upload and download new files. Development is proceeding quickly; the file upload ability was just added recently, in fact.
The Grive application can be installed from the repository in Ubuntu 11.10 or later. The source code is also available at GitHub if you want to tinker a bit. Set up is a bit of a pain right now, and requires some command line work; not uncommon in Linux.
After installing, you’ll need to create a Grive directory and grant it access to your Google Drive account. The “grive -a” terminal command should provide you with a URL to paste into the web browser. This page will have you authenticate Grive, and provide you with a code to paste back into the terminal window.
After all this business is done, all you have to do to refresh your Google Drive files is run Grive from the terminal. Is it as convenient as Google’s official desktop solutions? No, but you’re not running Linux because you want easy.