I have long wanted a 'Dropbox like' server for syncing files between computers, but instead of having a limited cloud storage outside of my control I want a FOSS client, with inhouse (FOSS) server that I control!
A long time ago I stumbled across iFolder (blueprint, dev wiki) but I never had any joy with it. A kind user posted instructions on how to install it successfully on Ubuntu 10.04/TKL v11.x but I never got around to it. Development seems to have stalled (last update on SF was 2010) and it doesn't have a .deb file which would allow easy client installation to Ubuntu/Debian (although it does have .rpm and .exe client binaries).
So anyway I did a bit of searching today and came across some other options and I thought I'd document it all here. So here are the list of options I found with some brief details:
- iFolder - The 'original' FOSS 'Dropbox like' client server sync. May still be an option for TKL but I think there may be better ones.
- SparkleShare (GitHub) - Looks very cool. Seems to use Git as a backend so everything is versioned, can use your own server or other services (such as GitHub). Multiple OS clients supported (Win/Linux/MacOS/Android/iOS). Has relatively easy setup. Whilst this looks pretty cool, I'm not sure of the value of a TKL appliance unless it was perhaps integrated into the Fileserver (or similar) as it would still require some manual end-user config so not a lot of added value by TKLising it IMO.
- Untitled Synchronization and Backup Project - Some interesting ideas and links etc, but not really anything usable... (I almost didn't include it here but it was one of the first things I stumbled across so thought I'd include it).
- LipSync - Lightweight auto folder sync tool. Looks interesting, but not really a condidate for TKL appliance IMO as it is Linux only and doesn't have any GUI (commandline only).
- Unison - Interesting take on the scenario. Cross platform, don't know much about it beyond that...
- Syncany (LaunchPad) - Looks very promising setup but is yet to release anything stable (and to try to release soonish they are currently looking to strip features). Also as it can use just about any external storage, the merits of a TKL Syncany server are limited IMO. Besides this development seems to have stalled. Still probably one to watch.
- ownCloud (or ownCloud.com) - I think this is the most promising one of the lot! IMO it is a true open source contender to DropBox. They are looking to release their commercial version this year which will be a direct competitor to Dropbox. It is still lacking versioning and recovery (of deleted files) but it looks like its a planned feature. The best feature IMO is the Web interface (demo here). This makes it the best contender for a TKL appliance IMO. And having said all that I think I will do a patch for it soon and have a play...! :)