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Why did we create the Jolidrive and why it matters?

by Tariq Krim

April 30th, 2013

Four years ago, we created Jolicloud to let everyone to benefit from the cloud revolution.

When we started, we did two things:

  • Give everyone free access to the cloud, even if they didn’t have the latest computer. We created Joli OS, a simple and beautiful cloud OS that could connect all computers to the cloud, even the old ones.
  • Create a personal environment in the cloud to easily access all our online content. The Jolidrive.

Today, I want to talk about the vision behind the Jolidrive. Jolidrive started its life as the user interface of our operating system. But as we improved it, we decided to make it available for everyone.

“A place just for you and your stuff”

For years, alongside my laptop, I carried an external hard drive with a copy of all my content. At that time, it was the easiest way to move and access content on multiple computers.

But the cloud changed everything. Now I only use my external hard drive to backup some music and movies. All my active content is in the cloud. But it’s hard for me to keep track of everything because it’s spread across too many services:

  • Google Drive, Dropbox, and Box is where my personal and professional documents are backed up.
  • My photos are spread across my iPhone, Facebook, Instagram and Path. The oldest ones are on Flickr.
  • I am a big music listener, so I had lots of MP3s on my local hard drive. Last year I decided to upload a good chunk of my music collection to Dropbox (it took me 17 days, so you can imagine how big it was!) I still have some music on iTunes, but I have started to create playlists on Spotify, Exfm and Soundcloud, and I see myself using YouTube more and more when I want to listen to rare tracks.
  • I read a lot of articles and I keep track of them with the “read me later” features of Instapaper and Readability.
  • Even if I am not a big Evernote user, I push images and articles to their servers from time to time.

But my digital life is not only about the things I have created:

  • Tons of important photos in my life have been taken by friends and sit in their digital accounts (I secretly hope everyday that they won’t close their accounts!)
  • I also spend a lot of time with social media. I “like” pictures, music, videos and articles everyday from different sources. I like the idea of going back from time to time and checking what I have selected. For exemple, when I don’t have the time to watch an interesting video on YouTube, I click on the “watch later” button and watch it when I am home.

In fact, all the content described above has now become the digital equivalent of my external hard drive.

“Jolidrive changed my digital life”

Until Jolidrive, I didn’t really have a sense of unity and ownership around my digital life because it was impossible for me to keep track of it. We designed our interface to make all these online services not very different from what file manager used to be. The magic of Jolidrive is to show each type of content (music, video, image, document) and be able to “play” it from the web!

Until Jolidrive I didn’t really use the full potential of SoundCloud and Tumblr the way I do now. I have subscribed to amazing source of content and I can start the day with infinite cool new music all the time.

Until Jolidrive, searching in my cloud was not really usefull. Now with the search, I can find stuff that I had completely lost track of and use the explore feature to discover new things that I had no idea existed. Just try Daft Punk on Tumblr to check all the remix created since the new album, in fact just type anything you like and you will be amazed by the diversity of results.

“Our personal cloud is the gatekeeper of our digital memories, it’s unique to us and must be preserved and nurtured over time.”

Using Jolidrive made me understand that we are all unique, not because of the phone and services we use, but because of what we do, like, create and store in this digital world. With all the coming services like Evernote, Jolidrive will help you build an even more personal and richer cloud. If there are services you believe we should include, let us know!

The future of the cloud is not about selling more $700 phones, but to create a place where we can enjoy our entire digital life without restriction, from any device we own, or will own in the future. This is the future we are trying to build at Jolicloud and with Jolidrive we really want to reinvent the way to access, manage and enjoy your digital life. And also make this digital world less complicated!

Happy jolidriving!

Comments (18)

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April 30, 2013
2:52 pm

Nice one – and thank you to all the team.

April 30, 2013
4:33 pm

Thanks Stephen!

April 30, 2013
4:42 pm

with your JoliDrive #IntelligentWeb meets #EmotionalWeb !

Lucas hache
April 30, 2013
7:05 pm

Love your work, effort and dedication! keep that way!

Leonardo Javier Alviarez Hernández
May 2, 2013
4:07 am

Saludos desde Venezuela!

Gracias por el gran trabajo que hacen, quisiera contribuir con el proyecto para traducirlo al castellano ¿cómo hago?.

> Thanks for the great work they do, would contribute to the project to translate into spanish how do I?

Thank you all!

@Leonardo: I sent you an email.

May 8, 2013
11:31 pm

Maybe should include

May 14, 2013
12:20 pm

You guys rock!
Many thanks to the team. Keep the fire on.

May 15, 2013
9:10 am

Yeah, just update the OS please.

May 15, 2013
10:37 am

@Tomáš: All services are under consideration. Stay tuned!

@Ts: Thanks!

@111: The future of Joli OS will probably be this

David Lynch
May 17, 2013
11:14 am

Awesome – would also love to see these added:

Mega (


May 20, 2013
7:37 pm

@Cédric: Is Jolidrive (ever going to be) Open Source?
I couldn’t find it on GitHub.
Sorry for the many questions..I discovered Jolidrive just recently after spending lot of time with ownCloud as my unified, opensource and local cloud manager (on low power arm boards and on amazon cloud).
If Jolidrive isn’t Open Source, would you consider integration with ownCloud?
Would it be possible for an ownCloud plugin, on the other hand, to see the content of the HDD of a JoliOS installation?

Is it possible to know which ARM devices are you testing on?

Thanks, for your answers and for the great software!

May 21, 2013
11:53 am

Hi positive!

Thank you for your feedback and the praise!

The OS, Joli OS, is open-source:

Its probable successeur, the Jolicloud Desktop Environment for Ubuntu, is also open-source:
More details about that project:

The web service,Jolidrive, is not open-source but there will be a public API. Stay tuned:

May 27, 2013
12:48 am

What happened to all the cool apps you used to be able to add to joli-drive? I added a bunch when they used to be there….and now they’re gone. I have to say that is a HUGE disappointment. I love all the new features and connections to other services, but I want the apps back!

May 27, 2013
12:50 am

and yes, please please please add DeviantArt! I’d also really like to see Springpad, Evernote, GetGlue and a few others, like Streamzoo (not all of us like Instagram…because it sucks) and maybe even StumbleUpon! But DeviantART is a must. I was glad to see Tumblr on it though, thanks for that.

May 29, 2013
10:48 am

Thanks for all the suggestions!

Regarding the apps, they are still there, just not enabled by default on the web. Go to Settings >Applications .
Note the apps are always displayed for Joli OS and the Jolicloud Desktop Environment.

July 9, 2013
6:19 pm

what is the link for mobile website???

July 12, 2013
3:12 pm

Just go to :) The web app is HTML5 and responsive!