About free software.


Where do you put your data?

This week is openSUSE hackweek, as you might know, and we do fun stuff. A couple of people, I was one of them, were investigating in the very promising project called ownCloud. We were working on a better integration in the openSUSE desktop in upcoming releases.

Why do we like ownCloud so much? openSUSE and ownCloud

Well, thats easy: ownCloud is a solution that is under the full control of the user and as a result very transparent. The server, were you push your data to is owned by you. You start, stop, erase or open it how ever you want.

Surely, other solutions were you push your private data to a server not owned and controlled by you are cool too, but, well, at least I do not want that. I did not came along a long way with free software to finally leave my data unfree. I want full control about the software and the data I work with.

openSUSE always strives to be a very free Linux without compromises and so I hope you will agree that our solution should leave the control about the cloud with the user working with the cloud. No trust us, we’re always will do good attitude. That is our way to go, and we will make that simple and appealing.

Specifically that means a couple of things:

  • we use a feature rich and extensible cloud supported by a large community which is ownCloud
  • a very easy installation of ownCloud for the openSUSE distribution user.
  • one syncronised folder on the desktopb by default without trouble setting it up
  • good integration in dolphin

What did we achieve so far in this hackweek?

On my computer here, I see a little cloud in my tray. If I click it, I am told that I am not yet connected to an ownCloud. A wizard now guides me through one of the three options:

  • connect to a ownCloud I set up earlier
  • install a new ownCloud locally to check it out
  • install a new ownCloud on my webspace via ftp.

The wizard collects the data needed, downloads the ownCloud source from the upstream official download location and installs it at the target location. After that the local integration is created. A folder called ownCloud in user’s home is created which is automatically synced up to the cloud. After fife clicks, I have ownCloud installed on my private domain and connected ~/ownCloud as a sync up folder :-)

It surely needs some more fixes here and there and some fixes, but I am still confident that will have some of that in 12.1. Speak up if you want to help, of course all code is public.

Thanks to Frank for visiting us and helping to get it going, Duncan, who started the mirall tool, which we extended, last Hackweek, to Cornelius for Ruby magic, Ismail for desktop integration and Tom for php hackery on ownCloud. It was a cool company this time, one of the best Hackweeks ever :)

Hope you’ll like the cloud coming into openSUSE :)