Recently I decided to reduce the amount of information I store in cloud services such as Dropbox, using them only when absolutely necessary. Why? Very shortly: privacy, security, preference for FOSS (free and open-source software).
I choose Owncloud as an alternative to file syncing and file redundancy since backups are always a bit late and scarcely frequent around here…
One of the issues I had with having a file server running Ownclound was the electrical bill which would go up a little with a computer always on. Fortunately I have an old laptop WOL (Wake On LAN) enabled that I decided to use as a server. This allows me to turn on the server on when I want to access my files by sending by sending a magic packet. This way I can leave the server off most of the time: at night or when I’m at work.
As for the technical details of the installation they are quite well detailed in these two sites:
I followed this guide to install and configure Owncloud on a Debian 7 server. The server already had MySQL, Apache and PHP installed and the rest was pretty straight forward. The only distinct configuration I used was the Data Folder. Instead of using the default one I created a dedicated folder in the home partition for Owncloud. The web server user (www-data in Debian) as to be given write access to the folder and one needs to create a empty file called .ocdata in the folder root.
As for the WOL configuration I followed this guide, which worked flawlessly.
There’s even a pretty neat multi-platform desktop client but you can access your data through http and webdav. Since the first time I tried Owncloud it has come a long way. Let’s see how it is on a regular usage and how it’s compared to more mature but closed solutions as Dropbox or Google Drive.