Google, dropbox and friends offer some nifty and useful services. I've always felt uneasy trusting my data with third parties but I've done so since February 2010 because the convenience out weighed the concerns. For me, that balance has now shifted.

Concerns about data privacy and collaboration with state sponsored spying (see PRISM) have increased while the quality of Free Software to provide cloud infrastructure has improved exponentially. In particular, ownCloud has really come of age.

ownCloud logo

The installation of ownCloud on Debian was straight forward and easy, following their documentation there was only these quick steps:

$ sudo su -
# echo 'deb /' >> /etc/apt/sources.list.d/owncloud.list 
# apt-get update
# apt-get install owncloud

I also installed the Linux desktop client for Debian as follows:

$ sudo su -
echo 'deb /' >> /etc/apt/sources.list.d/owncloud-client.list 
apt-get update
apt-get install owncloud-client

I'm currently using the file synchronisation service between the folders on my laptop, my ownCloud instance itself, my Android tablet and Android phone.

I'm extremely impressed by the quality and reliability of ownCloud thus far. I'm going to be digging deeper into it's features (listed below) in the lead up to this month's TasLUG Hobart meeting.

Straight from the ownCloud Features page: