Can one use the iPhone to browse photos and videos that reside in folders on a internet connected mac?

I have recently decided to not use library based photo managers - after Apple decided to give up on Aperture. Uploading to online photo sites is time consuming. And Dropbox costs $100 a year - kind of expensive just for photos.

And when I have an internet connected, always on, Mac Mini, then wondering why I cannot use it to serve up my photos and videos in a manner similar to what Dropbox can do.

Thanks in advance for sharing your ideas!

  • Have researched, and only two reasonable options have emerged 1) use a script to upload all folders to Flickr (and transfer deletes and folder changes to Flickr). 2) Use a Plex server - but it offers a lot of extra that I might not need or care about.
    – jim70
    May 29 '15 at 12:46

The app store has some pretty good options for file browsing apps. I use FileBrowser for example. FileBrowser description.

FileBrowser is the original and best file manager and viewer for iOS. FileBrowser can view, copy, move, upload, download, stream, and manage files between computers, servers, NAS drives and cloud storage in any direction. You don’t need to install any other software. FileBrowser will scan and locate computers on your network and connect in seconds and will connect to cloud storage quickly too.

Here's a link to FileBrowsers support guide to setting up "External Access", since thats what i'm taking your after with references to DropBox. This takes some setup but then you can access your files on the Mac Mini without limitations of being on the same network.

In a nutshell you are going to either open a port in your network firewall or setup a vpn to be able to get on the same network as your MacMini when outside of your home.

  • Thank you for sharing this app. Sounds like it will do exactly what I want. It will help me avoid having to buy Dropbox subscription and save tonnes of time by not having to upload photos to photo sites that come and go. Also, the VPN option sounds secure enough for my needs. I am not marking the question as answered yet, to see if anybody else can share any other idea. Thanks again!
    – jim70
    May 29 '15 at 14:37
  • A related question - how do you share photos? I guess will need to do the upload business if photo is to be shared. Asking because you may have figured it out already.
    – jim70
    May 29 '15 at 19:31

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