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I just got an email from Dropbox saying that they are disabling the Public folder feature as of March 15, 2017 and I'm looking for a (free) alternative.

I use the public folder quite extensively, especially to "attach" screen caps/recordings in web forms or emails when submitting an attached file is not an option. I have probably even linked a few files from my blog.

Apparently, you can still generate public links to specific files with Dropbox, but there is no longer a way to share a group of files publicly to browse, without generating a link to each one. So you can't just drop files in a public folder and instantly allow anyone to browse them. Sharing a folder is now only possible to specific users via entering their email address. Any files in your public folder which did not have links generated are no longer public.

So I would like to find an alternative cloud drive service that not only has a public folder, but also allows generation of public links via a Finder contextual menu.

I discovered that Google Drive can generate public links, but there's no way (that I know of) to get the public link via the Finder. I've used MEGA and Copy in the past, both of which could generate links from the Finder. MEGA folded and I don't remember what happened with Copy, but I assume they put up a pay wall. I was just reading through the OneDrive site and could not determine whether they even had a public folder, let alone a way to get a public link to a file from the Finder.

I also have searched a tiny bit for some google drive API documentation to see if there's a method I can use to create an automator service to create/copy a public link. Couldn't find anything.

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I don't know if we are taking about the same, but I used to use also quite much the public folder but since I can get a link to any file in my Dropbox, right clicking on it, I am not using it so much anymore and have my file in proper folders.

Have you tried right clicking and getting a link to file in your Dropbox but not in your public folder?

  • You are correct that you can still generate public links to specific files (and folders?). When I learned that, I became less concerned about this issue. However, the elimination of the public folder means that you cannot simply drop files into the folder to make them instantly publicly available via browsing the public folder contents on the dropbox site (without generating a link). The main point of this question though is to find an alternative cloud drive service that allows you to generate links via a Finder contextual menu (like Dropbox does). I will edit the question though to clarify. – hepcat72 Apr 21 '17 at 22:11

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