Grive2 – An Alternative Google Drive Desktop Client for Linux

Grive2 is an independent open source implementation of Google Drive client for GNU/Linux. It is written in C++ and interacts with Google Drive using Google’s REST API.

It works by simply downloading the files in your Google Drive to the current directory and either uploading/downloading changes back to your Google Drive or down to your Linux desktop respectively.

Grive2 is a fork of “GriveGoogle Drive client and its pitching features include Drive REST API and partial sync.

Features in Grive2

  • Free & open source. Licensed under GNU GPL v2.
  • Support for full two-sided synchronisation between Google Drive and local directory.
  • See the actions Grive2 wants to perform without performing them using the –dry-run option.
  • Specify a single directory ti syn with using the -s subdir option.
  • Exclude directories to be synced using –ignore option.
  • Option to exclude files using Perl regexp.

A few crucial features that aren’t yet supported in Grive2 are Google Docs help and recursive change-checking process; which means you will should manually run grive for the app to sync your contemporary changes.

In my opinion, till the aforementioned features are included Grive2 will not be capable of go head-to-head with different Google Drive client options like CrossCloud or Rclone.

Install Grive2 in Ubuntu or Linux Mint via PPA

Enter the following into a new Terminal window:

$ sudo add-apt-repository ppa:nilarimogard/webupd8
$ sudo apt-get update
$ sudo apt-get install grive

For the detailed instructions for other Linux distributions, go here:

How to Use Grive Google Drive in Linux

As I said, Grive will simply download / upload new or changed files back to your Google Drive from the directory you run it. So first create the new ‘grive‘ directory in your home directory and navigate inside it.

$ mkdir -p ~/grive
$ cd ~/grive

Now run the Grive2 using -a argument to assign it permission to access your Google Drive.

$ grive -a

After executing the above command, it will display a URL on the terminal – copy/paste this URL in an web browser to provide Google drive access to your Grive client by clicking on “Allow access” – an authentication code will be printed on the screen, copy/paste this code in their terminal.

Once you input code, it will begin syncing your Google Drive in your local grive directory in your system.

In case you need to sync again your Google Drive with your local grive directory, simply run the grive command without -a option as shown.

$ cd ~/grive
$ grive

Perhaps you have had some enjoy the use of Grive but have you ever had any using Grive2? Take it for a spin and don’t forget about share and hit that recommend button. Your comments and recommendations are also welcome.

About The Author
Lamin Kanteh
Lamin loves smartphones and was introduced to the world of mobile devices with Android. Ubuntu is new to him, but he is enjoying writing about it so far.