Box.com is a file storage service, currently notable for providing 50 gb of free storage if you sign up with its Android client. (Or a few gb free otherwise.)

git-annex can use Box as a special remote. Recent versions of git-annex make this very easy to set up:

WEBDAV_USERNAME=you@example.com WEBDAV_PASSWORD=xxxxxxx git annex initremote box.com type=webdav url=https://dav.box.com/dav/git-annex chunk=50mb encryption=shared

Note the use of chunking; Box has a 100 mb maximum file size, and this breaks up large files into chunks before that limit is reached.

old davfs2 method

This method is deprecated, but still documented here just in case. Note that the files stored using this method cannot reliably be retreived using the webdav special remote.

davfs2 setup

  • First, install the davfs2 program, which can mount Box using WebDAV. On Debian, just sudo apt-get install davfs2
  • Allow users to mount davfs filesystems, by ensuring that /sbin/mount.davfs is setuid root. On Debian, just sudo dpkg-reconfigure davfs2
  • Add yourself to the davfs2 group.

      sudo adduser $(whoami) davfs2
    
  • Edit /etc/fstab, and add a line to mount Box using davfs.

      sudo mkdir -p /media/box.com
      echo "https://dav.box.com/dav/  /media/box.com  davfs   noauto,user 0 0" | sudo tee -a /etc/fstab
    
  • Create ~/.davfs2/davfs2.conf with some important settings:

      mkdir ~/.davfs2/
      echo use_locks 0 > ~/.davfs2/davfs2.conf
      echo cache_size 1 >> ~/.davfs2/davfs2.conf
      echo delay_upload 0 >> ~/.davfs2/davfs2.conf
    
  • Create ~/.davfs2/secrets. This file contains your Box.com login and password. Your login is probably the email address you signed up with.

      echo "/media/box.com joey@kitenet.net mypassword" > ~/.davfs2/secrets
      chmod 600 ~/.davfs2/secrets
    
  • Now you should be able to mount Box, as a non-root user:

      mount /media/box.com
    

git-annex setup

You need git-annex version 3.20120303 or newer, which adds support for chunking files larger than Box's 100 mb limit.

Create the special remote, in your git-annex repository. This example is non-encrypted; fill in your gpg key ID for a securely encrypted special remote!

git annex initremote box.com type=directory directory=/media/box.com chunk=2mb encryption=none

Now git-annex can copy files to box.com, get files from it, etc, just like with any other special remote.

% git annex copy bigfile --to box.com
bigfile (to box.com...) ok
% git annex drop bigfile
bigfile (checking box.com...) ok
% git annex get bigfile
bigfile (from box.com...) ok
I had to change the url in fstab to https://dav.box.com/dav
Comment by Timothy Wed Dec 18 20:20:12 2013