Ubuntu One is the next step in personal cloud computing, which in the developers view ” simplifies your digital life” to quote the homepage of the project. It is worth reading up on all the information on the site, however I will explain in detail the features of it as well as the upsides and downsides of using it.
Ubuntu One features
Upgrade, downgrade or cancel at any time
Ubuntu One offers a couple of subscription options. Choose from the free subscription plan and receive 2 GB of storage or pay a monthly fee for more storage and additional features.
Subscribers can upgrade, downgrade, change billing information or cancel a subscription at any time. Choose the Account tab on the Ubuntu One website to view details or make any of these changes to your account.
Ubuntu One uses Ubuntu SSO (single sign-on) for user accounts. If you already have an Ubuntu SSO account or even a Launchpad account, you can use the same username and password.
Setup unlimited computers
All Ubuntu One subscribers (free or paid) can add all of their computers to their account for synchronization. There is no limit.
To add an additional computer to Ubuntu One, Ubuntu 10.04 LTS users should launch the Ubuntu One Preferences application from System > Preferences. This will open a web browser to start the process.
Next, log into Ubuntu One using your Ubuntu SSO username and password. Ubuntu One will detect that you have a subscription and complete the configuration process for your computer. Ubuntu One Preferences will display your Ubuntu One subscription information after closing and re-opening the application.
Setup instructions for previous or pre-release versions of Ubuntu 10.04 LTS may be different.
A personal cloud to store, sync, and share your files.
Automatically store and sync your documents, images and media with your personal cloud and your other computers. Share folders with project collaborators or publish files with the world.
Sync files to your personal cloud and other computers
Ubuntu One automatically synchronizes folders and files with all of your computers. You even have a copy available online in your personal cloud storage. Everyone gets 2 GB of cloud storage for free or can pay for more space and features.
Share folders with contacts
Share folders with your trusted colleagues.
Folder sharing is integrated into the Ubuntu desktop. Right-click on any synchronizing folder and pick contacts from your Evolution address book to share with. You can even grant the recipient read-only access for simple file viewing or write-access for complete control. Share recipients must have an Ubuntu One account to receive shared folders.
Publish with short URLs
Publish files to share with anyone directly from your Ubuntu desktop. Right-click on any synchronizing file and choose to “Publish via Ubuntu One” then right-click again and choose “Copy Ubuntu One public URL” to store a short URL on your computer’s clipboard. Now paste the URL anywhere – IM, IRC, twitter, or even email – for anyone to download the file. Right-click on the file again to stop file publishing.
Sync any folder in your home directory
Right-click on any folder and choose “Synchronize on Ubuntu One”. All of your Ubuntu 10.04 LTS computers can now synchronize your default folders like Documents, Pictures and Music.
Users should keep a few things in mind. If other computers added to Ubuntu One have different files within synchronizing folders, all files will be merged. Also, if you already synchronize a folder, you cannot enable it’s parent folder to synchronize. Just disable sync and enable sync for the parent folder.
All your contacts stay in sync
Ubuntu One Contacts is integrated with Evolution, the email application in Ubuntu. Ubuntu One automatically synchronize your address book contacts with your personal cloud so they’re always available when you need them. If you have multiple computers, Ubuntu One can synchronize your contacts between them. The Ubuntu One website also provides an easy way to browse and even modify your contacts.
For Ubuntu 10.04 LTS, we have extended our contacts synchronization capabilities to support Windows and Mac users. This feature is currently in beta and is only available to paid Ubuntu One subscribers. To use Ubuntu One Contacts, add your computer to Ubuntu One (Link to Official website) , move your contacts to the Ubuntu One address book and let sync do the rest.
Notes travel with you
Ubuntu One Notes is integrated with Tomboy, the notes application in Ubuntu, and automatically synchronize with your personal cloud and your other computers. You can also use the Ubuntu One website to browse and modify all of your notes.
Tomboy is also available for Windows and Mac users. To setup Ubuntu One Notes synchronization on these platforms, follow the same instructions as on Ubuntu.
To setup, open Tomboy, choose Edit > Preferences and click the Synchronization tab. Select the “Tomboy Web” Service and click the “Connect” button. Login to the Ubuntu One website and add your computer to synchronize notes. When you see the confirmation page appear, close your web browser and click “Save” in the Tomboy preferences window. You can also enable automatic synchronization by clicking the checkbox.
Synchronize your bookmarks
Ubuntu One Bookmarks (also called the Bindwood project) automatically synchronizes your Firefox bookmarks with your personal cloud and your other computers. You don’t have to change anything about how you use bookmarks today because Ubuntu One works behind the scenes to keep everything in sync.
For Ubuntu 10.04 LTS, we have enhanced this feature to support more aspects of bookmark organization including managing folders and separators. We will also soon launch a website interface for your bookmarks at one.ubuntu.com where you can see, use and even edit them.
Mobile contacts sync
Address book sync for mobile phones
Ubuntu One now enables you to keep all of your address book contacts in sync with your mobile phone. No matter how many contacts you have, Ubuntu One will sync them all.
Edit contacts anywhere
Mange changes anywhere and sync updates between Evolution, your personal cloud, and your mobile phone.
Setup is easy
Follow our step-by-step process to setup your phone. Ubuntu One supports thousands of mobile phones including smartphones such as iPhone and Android devices.
Try for 30 days
Mobile Contacts Sync is part of the paid Ubuntu One plan but free subscribers can try it out free for 30 days. Your trial starts at your first sync. This service is currently in beta test.
Ubuntu One Music Store
Combines a music store with the power of a personal cloud
- Buy songs from the biggest bands
- Integrated on your desktop with Rhythmbox
- High quality DRM-free music
- Automatically sync your purchases with all of your computers
- Learn more about the Ubuntu One Music Store
Ubuntu One subscription
Your essential personal cloud
These Ubuntu One features are available to everyone for free.
- Sync up to 2 GB of files, contacts, notes, bookmarks, purchased music, and Gwibber broadcast messages
- Automatically sync your digital life to your personal cloud and with all of your computers
- Free 30-day trial of Mobile Contacts Sync
- Mark any directory in your home folder for sync
- Share folders with trusted contacts or publish files to the Internet with convenient short URLs
- Sync purchased songs from the Ubuntu One Music Store
- Integrated with your Ubuntu computer
- Convenient web browser access to your personal cloud
Fee Paying ($10.00 USD per Month)
Subscribe to the paid plan and get all free plan features plus these enhancements.
- 50 GB total of storage to sync more of your digital life
- Keep your address book updated when you’re on the move with Mobile Contacts Sync
- Mobile sync supports thousands of phones including smartphones like iPhone and Android
- Synchronize your contacts with more applications (like Thunderbird) and operating systems (Windows and OS X)
Okay Now for the pros and cons!
- Everyone loves free storage.
- An alternative to itunes is a brilliant thing.
- It will encourage new users to check out Ubuntu.
- Is great for designers or coders who need access to there files everywhere.
- Children can save their homework on it and download it in school.
- You can save important files on it as another guaranteed backup
- $10.00 Per Month is quite steep for only 50Gb as a TB External Drive is about $110.
- Mobile Sync is fee paying only (may put off new users)
I’ll be doing a few articles on how it could be used and in what scenarios it is used soon so keep and eye on the blog!