5 WordPress Plugins to Make the Platform More Cloud-Friendly
By Space Coast Daily // August 30, 2021
WordPress makes up 40% of all websites and 64% of the CMS market. Those are big numbers that show how appealing to businesses WordPress actually is. It’s not just that wide-scale deployments that have more and more businesses turning to WordPress, as the platform is incredibly easy to use and includes a robust marketplace for extending the default feature set.
The WordPress plugin market includes tools for nearly every conceivable need you might have: eCommerce, backups, social network, custom blocks, spam protection, performance enhancements, and security, among other things. In fact, if you can think of it, there’s probably a plugin for it.
One of the categories with the most plugins? The cloud. You’re surely familiar with the cloud, a technology so widespread that its global market was predicted to exceed $330 billion in 2020. You use it and you might even work with cloud application development. The cloud has become one of the more ubiquitous technologies on the market.
It’s everywhere. And WordPress isn0t the exception. To that point, there are addons for WordPress that give it cloud-like features or extend it into the cloud.
These plugins offer features such as:
■ Connecting WordPress to cloud accounts
■ Giving users cloud space within WordPress.
■ Using third-party cloud services for media files.
■ Cloud storage
Let’s dive in and see what some of these cloud-friendly WordPress plugins have to offer.
Our first plugin adds some important features to WordPress, features that your customers and/or users will very much appreciate. WP Cloud makes it possible for you to turn a standard WordPress installation into a cloud platform. Users will have their own space for images and documents, which they can then easily share (similar to how Google Drive works).
Once installed, users will be able to:
■ See all uploaded files
■ View assigned cloud space
■ Get a quick view of how much of their cloud space they’ve used
■ Upload new files
WordPress administrators can also set user quotas and work with shortcodes. The developer of WP Cloud has also made it possible to check out the SVN Repository, so your development team can contribute to the plugin.
The one caveat to WP Cloud is that it doesn’t currently include support for folders, so users will have to upload all of their files to the root of their personal cloud space on the WordPress instance.
WP Cloud is free to use and has been tested on WordPress up to 5.5.4.
DigitalOcean Spaces Sync
With DigitalOcean Spaces Sync, your WordPress Media Library can be connected to a DigitalOcean Spaces container, so you can sync data from WordPress to cloud storage. By creating this connection, you’ll be less likely to run out of space on your WordPress installation.
You can even opt to keep media locally and use DigitalOcean Spaces as a backup solution for media or serve that media directly from the Spaces container.
It’s important to know that, to make use of DigitalOcean Spaces Sync, you must first have a DigitalOcean Spaces API key.
Once installed, WordPress admins can define constraints for the plugin.
Those constraints include:
■ DOS_KEY – Your DigitalOcean Spaces API key.
■ DOS_SECRET – Your DigitalOcean Spaces secret.
■ DOS_ENDPOINT – Your DigitalOcean Spaces endpoint.
■ DOS_CONTAINER – The name of your DigitalOcean Spaces container.
■ DOS_STORAGE_PATH – The path to files in the DigitalOcean storage (which will appear as a prefix).
■ DOS_STORAGE_FILE_ONLY – Define if you want to keep files only in DigitalOcean Spaces (true|false).
■ DOS_STORAGE_FILE_DELETE – Define if you want to remove files in DigitalOcean Spaces once they’ve been deleted in WordPress (true|false).
■ DOS_FILTER – Regex filter definition.
■ UPLOAD_URL_PATH – The full URL to the files.
■ UPLOAD_PATH – The path to the files housed in WordPress.
A word of warning, though- use caution with this plugin, as it hasn’t been updated in the past year.
The Leopard WordPress plugin makes it possible for you to offload media storage to AWS S3, Wasabi, Google Cloud, DigitalOcean Spaces, and Bunny CDN Storage.
This addon includes features such as:
■ Unlimited existing media to cloud storage.
■ Custom path folder bucket.
■ Pull assets (such as js, CSS, fonts, SVG) from themes, plugins, and WordPress Core.
■ Underground and automatic sync.
■ Support for Easy Digital Downloads and wooCommerce.
■ Automatic file compression.
■ Minify CSS, JS, and HTML.
■ Support for WebP.
■ Support for frontend submissions.
■ Multisite support.
■ Free updates.
■ Allow file upload types.
This is a great extension for any company that uses WordPress but has limited space on the hosting server and wants a bit more flexibility with storage.
Leopard isn’t a free add-on. A regular license is $59.00 and for $20.25 more you can get extended support (for up to 12 months).
Use Your Drive (Google Drive)
For anyone that depends on Google Drive for files, Use your Drive (Google Drive) might be a great plugin to extend your WordPress cloud functionality. This Google Drive integration is highly customizable and displays your Google Drive or Google Workspaces files within WordPress.
With Use Your Drive, you’ll find creating new content much easier, especially when using files from Google Drive. Instead of having to first download the files from Drive to your local machine, and then uploading them into posts or pages, you can use them directly from within WordPress (as if they were stored locally).
User Your Drive is another non-free addon, but the price is only $36.00 for a regular license. You can also purchase extended support for $11.63.
M2C is another cloud storage connector that works with Amazon S3, Google Cloud Storage, and DigitalOcean Spaces. M2C allows you to serve all WordPress media from your cloud storage, thereby freeing up crucial space on your hosting server. Or, if you aren’t concerned with saving local storage space, you can use M2C as a sync/backup solution for your WordPress media. And because M2C handles auto-sync, you don’t have to worry about manually syncing media between WordPress and your cloud storage buckets.
The M2C feature list includes:
■ Easy to use UI.
■ One-click sync.
■ Option to serve media from WordPress or a third-party cloud host.
■ Unlimited image sync.
■ CDN-based media/file serve.
The developers of M2C are currently working to add the following features to the addon:
■ Microsoft Azure support.
■ More file types for syncing (such as PDF and zip files).
■ File filters.
■ M2C is free to use and has been tested up to version 5.7.1 of WordPress.
With the right plugins, you can add cloud-like features to your WordPress installation. What you use WordPress for will dictate the types of plugins you use but, rest assured, there are plenty of options available. Some of these third-party addons are free and others have an associated price. Although most of these additions are very easy to work with, you might find one or two that offer a bit of a challenge, so make sure you have the IT staff up for the task.