Amazon’s S3, or Simple Storage Service, has become one of the most used cloud services today. We use it for all kind of purposes, including but not limited to data lakes, intermediary storage, persistence layer for databases, etc. I know people who use S3 as their personal online storage, as an alternative for services such Google Drive and Dropbox. But the problem is, the official web client, or the AWS console isn’t the best when it comes to navigating S3 buckets and folders. When you just want to check file properties and such, it’s fine. But you can’t really update files in S3, you have to remove the file and upload it again with new data.
But this isn’t the most convenient option. So, there are a lot of third party services that are trying to fill this gap. There are services which offer their services free of cost, there are some that offer some features for free, and some features as paid only. Then, there are enterprise services that are completely paid. We’re going to look at one such service today, Filestash. It’s a free online tool where you can browse your S3 buckets, and even edit files from within the browser. This will come in very handy when you’re using S3 as a personal online storage.
Getting started with Filestash
Getting started with Filestash is very easy. But you need to have some developer knowledge to get started. This is because you need to create an access key and secret key. For this, head over to the IAM service on your AWS console. There are many guides online for this, or let me know in the comments below if you need me to write one for that.
Once you have the access and secret keys, head over to Filestash and fill in the keys. Also, mention the region in which the S3 bucket of your interest is located. And, if you have enabled encryption on S3, click the Advanced button to reveal another section to enter the encryption details. Once you fill up these details, you’re ready to go.
Trying it out before connecting
If you’re not confident about giving Filestash access to your data, just like me, then you can try out the publicly available data to see how it looks and works. This is what I did, and this is how I got to know that you can even edit files online. But because this is public data, I wouldn’t recommend editing any document you see here.