This week, we talk to Nick Craigwood, the creator and principal developer of rclone, a very popular open-source tool for copying data to and from cloud providers. Rclone is downloaded roughly 250,000 times each month, and has over 30,000 stars on GitHub. There are six core developers, and a great community of users and other developers at rclone.org.
We talk a little bit about Nick’s development philosophy, which is that he doesn’t mind adding features – as long as they don’t break backwards compatibility. Then we talk about how rclone works, and what it’s like to sync a filesystem to an object store – including support for multi-part uploads and downloads. We also talk about rclone’s encryption support, while Nick was “relaxing” on holiday. We then talked about how rclone can be used to minimize the risk of backing up to any one cloud provider, preventing things like what happened during the OVH fire earlier in 2021. We also discuss some strategies, such as backing up directly to two different clouds, versus backing up to one, then syncing to another – and how CloudFlare’s R2 might figure into things. Finally, we talk about Nick’s plans for rclone’s future, such as making their web UI better to increase usability for many more people – while not sacrificing the command line. Join us for a fascinating episode, the first one where we’re talking to the creator of the tool in question.