Cloud Storage Best Practices

Live Versions: 9-10
Operating System: All


Cloud storage applications can be a convenient way for users to share their production files, access them remotely, or simply back up their system.

However, few of these services are optimized to handle the fast pace of music production software, and can create issues that are rather difficult for our Support Team to identify in Live's program files.  In this article, we will discuss some of the common problems (and solutions!) that users might encounter when using cloud storage.

Note:  If you suspect that your cloud storage application is causing performance issues in Live, simply quit the cloud application and disable your internet connection before opening the program.  If the problem goes away, then the cloud application is likely at the root of the problem.

General Advice

  1. If you're storing your files in a cloud-synced folder, make sure that the files are available locally (on your computer) at all times. Some services may offer the option to only store references to those files on your computer, while the actual file itself resides in the cloud. In those instances Live will not be able to locate the file, as it does not physically reside on your computer.
  2. Whenever possible, disable cloud synchronization before opening Ableton Live.
  3. Never sync program files to the cloud (applications / plugin folders / etc).
  4. Only use cloud applications to store library content (such as audio samples and Ableton Live Project Folders).

Main Issues Caused by Cloud Storage

  1. Some applications delete files from the computer's internal storage after uploading them to the cloud.  (For details on how to fix this, please refer to this help article from OS X Daily to store your files locally).
  2. Scheduled backups can interfere with Live's performance at seemingly "random" intervals.
  3. Files containing a "[Space]" as their first character are not backed up to the cloud, and may not work as expected with Ableton Live.

Other Symptoms of Cloud Storage Problems

NoteAlthough these symptoms can relate to cloud storage, this is not guaranteed.  For more information on these types of problems, please refer to the linked "More info here" articles.

  1. Seemingly "random" CPU spikes / crashes.  (More info here)
  2. Error message: "Media Files are Missing".  (More info here)
  3. Error message: "The file '[Live Set].als' could not be opened.
  4. Cloud-synced folders added to Live's Browser regularly have missing files.
  5. Sets in the "Open Recent Set" menu appear greyed out.  (More info here)
  6. Live crashes while saving a Live Set.  (More info here)
  7. Files mysteriously re-appear after being deleted.
  8. Files mysteriously duplicate themselves.
  9. Certain Max for Live devices are unable to read audio files.
  10. Corrupted Live Sets.  (Rare, but not impossible! - More info here)