There are plenty of cloud storage solutions, many offers free storage up to a certain amount of data. The company who stores your data then intends to charge you for any additional space you are going to use, which seems to be the business model pretty much for all cloud storage providers out there. You give other people your own personal data and trust that they will take a good care of it. It might not be a bad idea letting big companies to handle those data for you, considering the technology involved in file sharing and syncing solution. But for those who don’t like the idea letting big companies to handle their personal data, there is another option.
Introducing ownCloud, just like the name suggested, it allows you to take control over your own cloud services. You have full control of how and what to be stored in the cloud. ownCloud is a piece of software, an engine that powers the server end to allow you to manage your own data in the cloud. Just like how WordPress empowers blogging, ownCloud is WordPress version for cloud storage solutions.
It’s being around of sometimes, so it is mature enough to start talking about it. Here is a guide on how to setup your very own ownCloud on Windows with XAMPP localhost.
Requirements Setup and Installation
- a Windows machine
- install xampp
- some basic knowledge in following steps
Assuming you already have XAMPP installed, if now, go download XAMPP now and install it on your Windows machine. If you have trouble to startup Apache on your XAMPP please refer to this guide on how to troubleshoot.
If you already have XAMPP installed, startup Apache and Mysql.
There are two method to setup ownCloud on your local machine, first is web install, the other is extract the entire software copy and past it to the htdocs directory. I’ve tried to use the first method, recommended by ownCloud, but that turns out to be some troublesome when setup. So I suggest and recommend you to use the other method, download ownCloud here (5.0 at the time of the writing). Extract the file, copy and past it under /htdocs/
Navigate to http://localhost/ownCloud (or the path you have copy and pasted to) and you will be prompted for setup with a security warning with the following message.
No secure random number generator is available, please enable the PHP OpenSSL extension.
Without a secure random number generator an attacker may be able to predict password reset tokens and take over your account.
Since we are testing and deploy locally, you can safe to ignore this message and give your admin account a new password.
Now you should be login, and be prompted for this welcome splash screen. This means you have successfully installed and deployed your very own ownCloud server. It’s now time to download a client and hook up with this ownCloud instance.
ownCloud supports pretty much all the popular clients out there, iOS, Android, Windows desktop etc. It has yet to have clients for Windows Phone, but there is a version in the work. In our case, we will download the Windows desktop client, you can download the client here.
Here you will need to supply the URL of ownCloud. In our case, it’s http://localhost/owncloud and username with password. It’s admin and the password of your choice when setup.
If everything goes as planed, you should be able to see something like this. A success connection, from here the world is all yours. You can do a lot amazing things with ownCloud. We will have more coverage and show you some neat tricks with ownCloud late in the series.
For now, you have just successfully configured your very own cloud service. It’s time to explore this new piece of goody.