Losing connection to iCloud Folders

I have all my media stored on iCloud, when I add the folder to Infuse Pro 7.6.1 (4559) on iPad Air 5th Gen running 17.0.3, everything adds to my library fine. However, when I go back in after lets say an hour, nothing in my library is working and when I click on the Files icon and click into each folder I have added, I am presented with an error message that Infuse has lost connection to the folder. I am able to read it and access it again but that is a bit of a pain. Is there a different way to add an iCloud folder?

Infuse can’t use iCloud for a media source. You need to have a different cloud service or a local network server.

You can see how here.

I’m not trying to use it for streaming. I want to use iCloud as my library and download what I want to watch (I know not ideal but that’s the cloud I have with the most storage). If I click on something it tells me it has to download it locally so the functionality exists, its just dropping the connection after some time.

Infuse can’t download videos from iCloud. I’m pretty sure it’s an Apple thing.

I’ve been experimenting with files stored in iCloud Drive. Apple does not allow streaming from it, so the experience, for example, is not the same as setting up something from Google Drive. However, Infuse on MacOS has the ability to “Add Local Folder,” which can be an iCloud Drive directory, and Infuse on iOS/iPadOS has the ability to choose the same option under “Add Share,” that opens iOS’/iPadOS’ Files app, which gives access to the underlying iCloud Drive filesystem where you can also choose a directory. In choosing either of these locations, as OP noted, the content available at those locations can be indexed and metadata built for it, where Infuse then shows the added content as Library items. This is nice.

When initially setting this up, I was under the impression that if the content was not downloaded already to the device at the provided path (ie, Apple has “optimized”/offloaded the storage), that Infuse would then trigger either MacOS or iOS/iPadOS to then download the content at the path, and upon completion Infuse would then start playing the content. Unfortunately, the result is actually what OP and others described: Infuse throws an error and the content does not play.

I was under the impression that Infuse would in fact trigger in some way the download of content not available at the path and then play it. I vaguely remember reading this somewhere, but cannot recall where. Instead, I need to either open Finder and choose to “Download Now” from the context menu, or open Files and long-press in Files for a context menu to then also choose “Download Now.” For iOS/iPadOS, where most files are optimized by default, given likely disk limitations on these portable devices, this is probably more of a gotcha then it would for a user on MacOS.

@james did this used to work, or have we misunderstood what should happen?

The difference in usability from having Infuse trigger a download vs having to open a given filesystem’s GUI app like Finder or Files on their respective operating systems is the difference between casual users and advanced users familiar with the path structure of the content attempting to get played.


Something I just want to note is that my interest in using iCloud Drive for my media has piqued in the last six months since receiving the letter from Google Drive about enforcing storage limits, and combined with Apple’s additional storage tiers of 6TB and 12TB, I’ve been seriously considering scaling down my media habits and consolidating within Apple’s ecosystem and subscription, which I already pay, then discarding Goolge Drive for media.

I just did a few quick tests here in iOS 17.1.2 and Infuse 7.6.4. Attempting to play files on iCloud Drive in Infuse showed a ‘Downloading from iCloud…’ message, and then once complete the files began playing.

Unfortunately, files would need to be downloaded in full before playback can begin, so in order for this to work you would need to have ample space available on your device. For this reason, iCloud Drive is much more limiting when compared to other options like Dropbox, Google Drive, and Aliyun Drive.

Unfortunately I’m not seeing that behaviour. I sent this just now after attempting to play a file on iOS that points a location with iCloud Drive: XFNHD

The popup message on iOS states:

An error occurred
Could not access external folder [filename.extension]

Close


As far as iCloud Drive limitations, yeah, I know the device would need to first have the whole thing available locally before playback can occur. It’s not ideal, but it’s not a total dealbreaker when not on tvOS. Of course, tvOS not having access is really unfortunate, but that’s Apple for you. I’m sure they’ll come around to it eventually.

Thank you for the details – I was hoping to use iCloud now that iCloud Drive storage was expanded to 12TB. My old 2009 Mac Pro which had huge storage died, and I am yet to replace it with a NAS or external HDs for my Mac Studio.

So for this to ever work, Apple would need to offer something for iCloud that Google Drive does, but iCloud does not? How exactly would Apple need to change iCloud Drive?