C-Command Software Forum

Synching via SpiderOak

Has anyone used SpiderOak in a setup similar to the Dropbox setup? I like the security offered by SpiderOak, but am concerned that I will make the purchase (I need more than 2GB) and find out Spider won’t play with EagleFiler. Any insight or guidance is appreciated.

Dropbox FAQ:

Metadata and resource forks

Avoid syncing files that use metadata (or resource forks), including Mac aliases or Windows shortcuts. These types of files typically only work on the operating systems they were created on.

SpiderOak FAQ:

Does SpiderOak keep and restore Mac OS X resource forks, finder color labels, spotlight comments? Owners, permissions, timestamps?

SpiderOak retains Unix/Mac file and folder attributes structures, including uid, gid (ownership), permissions, ctime, and mtime. SpiderOak also retains and restores the contents of Mac OS X resource forks.

Like most backup systems, SpiderOak does not store the atime (last access time) of a file.

Also, SpiderOak does not store Finder colors, or spotlight comments. We will be adding support for these in the future.

Per Matthew Guay in a reply to comments on his Dropbox vs SpiderOak: File Sync Battle article.

the vast number of iOS apps that work with Dropbox make it almost impossible to leave Dropbox behind.

I haven’t tested SpiderOak yet due to that (hopefully temporary) limitation.

Another comment there from Daniel @ SpiderOak:

Dropbox is targeted @ novice users while we @ spideroak are much more aimed at advanced users with real security and customization needs.

I submitted a question to SpiderOak re file/folder name issues a la Dropbox’s FAQ. EF addresses this issue with this file renaming script.

To be clear, Dropbox does support resource forks (and Finder labels and xattrs). They just mean that if you have a Windows machine it won’t know what to do with the resource forks.

I’d be interested to hear someone’s first-hand experience with SpiderOak, since this (possibly outdated?) post suggests that it handles metadata poorly.

Originally posted by Michael Tsai:
I’d be interested to hear someone’s first-hand experience with SpiderOak, since this (possibly outdated?) post suggests that it handles metadata poorly.

I have one EagleFiler library backed up with SpiderOak, and synchronized with a Windows computer. This particular library primarily contains meeting and project notes. Of course EagleFiler doesn’t work on Windows, but the files are available under Windows when they’re needed for reference.

So far all of the attributes I’ve assigned to the files, such as colors or tags, remain intact on the Mac. I’m not consciously using symlinks or aliases in the library. RTF files are occasionally written to the “To Import” folder from the Windows side, and they import into the EagleFiler library correctly.

The tags (in either OpenMeta or Spotlight comments) should always remain intact because if they get messed up EagleFiler will notice and fix them from its database.

For colored labels, the case to look out for is when you have multiple Macs. It’s unlikely that any such software would remove labels on the source Mac, but the question is whether it correctly propagates label changes to the other Macs (or to back to your main Mac, if you’re “restoring” from the cloud).

Restoring a file did not preserve the colored labels. I would appear that SpiderOak may still handle metadata poorly.

SpiderOak responded that the same set of filesystem restrictions apply.