– Have you ever wondered how to setup your own private Cloud service?
– Is there any (preferably self hosted) alternative to DropBox, Google Drive, SkyDrive… ?
– Services like Dropbox and Google Drive are really good but they can cost you money if you need more space.
– You have tried all the alternatives to Dropbox and Google Drive but you need something different?
– Do you really need all the futures they provide?
– Do you need more features (like syncing calendars, tasks, contacts and music)?
– Do you want to be able to install pre-made or develop your own plugins for your cloud?
– Can we really trust companies like Google or Dropbox them with our data?
– Are you a small company or start-up and you can’t afford a $795/year for Dropbox team service?
– You also need iPhone and Android application so you can access your files on your phone?
– You also want a Windows, Mac or Linux Desktop application and Web access?
– You want to host that could on your company server or inhouse? And you want it on a sub-domain like cloud.yourcompany.com?
– And you want it free or really cheap?
Not a problem! We got you covered with all that!!!
The solution to problems listed (and un-listed) above is really simple. All you need is to install ownCloud on your server/hosting. This software is a PHP/MySQL powered so it will work on just about any Linux server and is released under AGPL license.
In case you have hosting (shared/vps/cloud/dedicated) you can skip this paragraph.
If you don’t have one – you can get it pretty cheap these days and my advice is to go with DigitalOcean. They will provide you with great entry level VPS (512MB of DDR3 RAM, 1 Intel Xeon 2GHz Core, 20GB od SSD hard disk space and 1TB of bandwidth) for just $5. Did I mention it’s SSD powered – so it’s blazing fast! Plus you can deploy your VPS in US or NL and you can add backups for 20% (in this case for $1 extra a month). New VPS is provisioned in 60 seconds and you pay per hour of use (not monthly). So you’re invited to play bit with different linux distributions, geo-locations and sizes etc.. and to fully test it out before you put it in production use.
Installing OwnCloud on shard hosting
The installation process is easy and it’s similar to installing just about any PHP/MySQL script (like WordPress for eg.).
Here’s step by step guide:
1. Download the web installer from this url: https://download.owncloud.com/download/community/setup-owncloud.php
2. Upload setup-owncloud.php to your web space
3. Point your web browser to setup-owncloud.php on your webspace
4. Follow the instructions and configure ownCloud
5. Login to your newly created ownCloud instance!
In case you need any help with the setup feel free to contact me
Downloading Desktop Client
There are Desktop Sync Applications already developed for Windows, Linux and Mac OS. All you need to do is to download them and install them.
iOS and Android Applications
You can get them from Apple Store or from Google Play. They are not free but are really cheap and cost only $0.99 to install. Here’s a nice YouTube tutorial of Android Application:
Feature list of ownCloud
– Access, Share and Sync your data
– Tasks, Contacts, Calendar, Galleries and Music
– Public API
– SSL Encryption
– Powerful Search
– File Versioning
– File Un-Delete
– Download whole folders as ZIP archives
– LDAP Active Directory
– User Management
– User Quotes and Groups
– Internal Messages (free 3rd party app)
– External Storage (access data from AmazonS3, GoogleDocs, DropBox, FTP…)
– PDF viewer in browser (no plugins required)
– ODF Document Viewer (file formats: .odt, .odp, .ods)
– Image Viewer and Media Player (free 3rd party app)
– Text Editor (PHP editor with syntax highlighting)
– Translated into many laguages
– Migration and backup of accounts
– Application store (so you can expand your cloud with extra plugins)
– If you are HUGE company or organisation you should check Enterprise Edition at ownCloud.com
To try out the ownCloud software you can check official ownCloud demo
OwnCloud is really interesting, feature rich cloud platform that enables you to share your data between users and various devices. It can be useful for both individuals and companies/organizations. If you have a need for your own cloud solution or you are looking for alternative to Dropbox, Google Drive or SkyDrive – you should give it a try!