The mindless ramblings of a bow shooting network engineer.
Get off my cloud

Get off my cloud

No, this isn’t a post about music. Although that is a great song. It’s actually a post about “Cloud Storage”.

Let’s get one thing straight from the outset. I hate the term “cloud”. It means nothing, cloud storage is simply storage attached to a server or servers somewhere on the internet that you have no visibility of.

Now you know what cloud storage is, you’ve probably realized that you’ve already used it in some form. Most of you will be familiar with Dropbox or maybe Google Drive. These services are great and I use both myself but you’ll probably find the amount of free storage you get a bit limiting. I know I do. When it comes to wanting to increase your storage space, it starts to cost. I’m lucky enough to have been given 50Gb of storage from Dropbox, mainly thanks to purchasing a particular brand of mobile phone. Unfortunately, I’ve only got that amount for 2 years at which point I will start having to pay for it. As I don’t like paying for stuff, I started looking for alternatives.

Enter OwnCloud

OwnCloud is free software that lets you run your own cloud storage. It runs on a variety of platforms including linux and windows and there are a variety clients available including clients for mobile devices. If you’re lucky enough to have a server sat in a data centre somewhere (which working for an ISP I do) then you can provision cloud storage on your own server. Again, removing the word cloud from that sentence….you can access your server storage from the internet and synchronize your data across several devices/platforms.

The install was pretty straightforward and the documentation is pretty good. Installation took me around an hour and the application works great. Administration is pretty simple using the web interface and the amouont of user control you have seems sufficient.

I’ve only been using the software for a couple of days, but so far this looks like a good alternative to the subscription services offered by the likes of Dropbox and GoogleDrive. When I’ve been using for some time, I’ll do a more in-depth review.



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