iCloud Drive: How to Find and Edit Files

Philip Blog, PDFpen, TextExpander

(Updated December 4, 2014 after the release of PDFpen 2.)

Yosemite (OS X 10.10) and iOS 8 bring with them iCloud Drive. This means, in addition to the iCloud storage you are familiar with, the “switch it on and it just works” sync and storage, there is also a new iCloud Drive feature in the form of a folder structure similar to Dropbox or Google Drive. This is an exciting new update which we are working to implement and understand all the details of.

If you are running Yosemite or iOS 8, access iCloud Drive by opening Finder on your Mac or opening an import / export action in an iOS app. Keep in mind, you will only see iCloud Drive in an iOS app if support for it has been added by the app’s developer.

In iCloud Drive you will notice that all the Apple apps, Numbers, Pages, Preview, etc., all have folders giving you have access to all the files in them, files made by those apps. This makes sharing files between apps much easier.

Why aren't you seeing the rest of your apps in iCloud Drive? 

All files in iCloud don't just appear in iCloud Drive. An app's files are not viewable in iCloud Drive until that app's developer adds that feature.

TextExpander 4.3.4 for Mac and TextExpander touch 3.2 do not support iCloud or iCloud Drive. We were unable to support iCloud previous to iCloud Drive, but are now working on a way to include support for iCloud Drive in the future.
PDFpen 6.3.2 for Mac and earlier, PDFpen 1.8.2 for iPhone and iPad and earlier, and PDFpen Scan+ 1.4 and earlier do not support iCloud Drive. iCloud still works, you can have iCloud switched on and your documents will still sync, but you will not see your PDFpen documents in iCloud Drive.

For iCloud Drive support upgrade to PDFpen for iPad and iPhone version 2 and PDFpen Scan+ 1.5 and later. We are working on adding iCloud Drive to PDFpen for Mac.

How do you access iCloud Drive documents on your Mac?

You’ve upgraded to Yosemite and iOS 8, you have turned on iCloud Drive, now you want to get at your PDFpen documents on your Mac, and maybe open a Preview PDF in PDFpen, or vice versa. Since we haven't implemented iCloud Drive, yet, you can't see your documents in the iCloud Drive folder, but you can still access them.

For our PDFpen/PDFpenPro for Mac users, there are two scenarios. 

  • You have PDFpen for Mac purchased from the Mac App Store. This means your  documents are stored in iCloud. In Finder you will not see PDFpen documents in the iCloud Drive folder but in the PDFpen folder under iCloud. This will allow you to open PDFpen documents in other apps, like Preview for example.When accessing documents from within the PDFpen app, edit documents stored in iCloud via the open/save dialog. This is how you can edit your PDFpen documents, or Preview PDFs.
  • You have the direct purchase version of PDFpen, not from the Mac App Store. If you also have PDFpen for iPhone or iPad, with iCloud turned on, that you have documents in iCloud. While the PDFpen documents in iCloud are currently hidden in iCloud Drive, they are still accessible on your Mac. To access the folder in Finder choose View > Go to Folder (Cmd+Shft+G) and paste in this location:

    ~/Library/Mobile Documents/7PKJ6G4DXL~com~smileonmymac~PDFpen/Documents

Keep in mind that if you update your devices to Yosemite or iOS 8, and you update to iCloud Drive when you do, those devices will no longer sync iCloud files with older operating systems. We explain this a bit more in our previous post iCloud, PDFpen and iOS 8 — Before you update.