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As the amount of data we generate continues to increase, finding a reliable and cost-effective way to store it has become increasingly important. Cloud storage software is a great solution for this need, allowing users to store data remotely and access it from anywhere with an internet connection. For Linux users, there are a variety of options available, including open source software.

Open source software is a type of software that is freely available to use, modify, and distribute. It is often created and maintained by a community of developers and users, rather than a single company. This can make it a great choice for cloud storage, as it can be more customizable and transparent than proprietary software.

In this article, we will explore the benefits of open source cloud storage software for Linux users in 2023. We will provide an overview of different types of cloud storage software and discuss how open source options can be customized to fit specific needs. Finally, we will provide a list of the top open source cloud storage software options available for Linux users.

What is Cloud Storage Software?

Cloud storage software is a type of software that allows users to store data remotely on servers located in data centers, and access that data from anywhere with an internet connection. This can be especially useful for businesses or individuals who need to access their data from multiple locations or devices.

There are several different types of cloud storage software, including −

Public cloud storage − This type of cloud storage is offered by third-party providers, such as Amazon Web Services or Google Cloud Platform. Users pay for the amount of storage they use on a monthly or yearly basis.

Private cloud storage − This type of cloud storage is hosted on servers that are owned and maintained by an individual or organization. It can be more secure than public cloud storage, as the owner has more control over the data.

Hybrid cloud storage − This type of cloud storage combines elements of public and private cloud storage, allowing users to store some data on public servers and some data on private servers.

Benefits of Open Source Cloud Storage Software

Using open source software in general has a number of benefits, including −

Cost savings − Open source software is often available for free, which can be a huge cost savings for individuals and businesses.

Flexibility − Open source software is often highly customizable, which can make it a good choice for businesses or individuals with specific needs.

Transparency − Because the source code is freely available, users can see exactly how the software works and can identify and fix any issues or bugs.

In the context of cloud storage software specifically, there are several additional benefits to using open source options −

Customization − Because open source software is highly customizable, it can be tailored to fit specific needs. This can be especially important for businesses with unique requirements.

Security − Open source software is often more secure than proprietary software, as the code is available for anyone to review and identify vulnerabilities.

Collaboration − Open source software is often developed and maintained by a community of developers and users, which can lead to a more collaborative and innovative approach to software development.

Top Open Source Cloud Storage Software for Linux in 2023

There are many open source cloud storage software options available for Linux users. Here are some of the top choices −


This software is a popular choice for individuals and businesses looking for a self-hosted cloud storage solution. It offers file syncing, collaboration tools, and a range of third-party integrations.

Benefits −

Highly customizable

Can be self-hosted for increased security

User-friendly interface

Drawbacks −

Requires some technical knowledge to set up


Seafile is a file syncing and sharing software that offers both self-hosted and cloud-hosted options. It offers end-to-end encryption, file versioning, and mobile access.

Benefits −

High level of security with end-to-end encryption

User-friendly interface

Multiple deployment options

Drawbacks −

Limited third-party integrations

Can be slower for large files


This software is similar to Nextcloud in that it offers a self-hosted cloud storage solution with file syncing, collaboration, and third-party integrations. It also offers mobile access and built-in file versioning.

Benefits −

Highly customizable

User-friendly interface

Large selection of third-party apps and integrations

Drawbacks −

Requires technical knowledge to set up

Can be slower for large files

How to choose the best open source cloud storage software for your needs

Choosing the right open source cloud storage software for your needs can be a daunting task. Here are some factors to consider when making your decision −

Features − Consider the features offered by each software and whether they meet your needs, such as file syncing, collaboration tools, mobile access, and encryption.

Usability − Look for software that is user-friendly and has a clean interface, so that you can easily navigate and use the software.

Compatibility − Make sure that the software you choose is compatible with your operating system and any other software you plan to use it with.

Customization − Consider how customizable the software is and whether you can adjust it to fit your specific needs.

Once you have a few options in mind, it’s a good idea to test them out to ensure that they meet your needs. You can do this by setting up a trial account or testing a self-hosted version of the software.


Overall, open source cloud storage software is a great option for Linux users looking for secure and customizable cloud storage solutions. By considering the features, usability, compatibility, and customization of each software, you can choose the best option for your needs. Whether you’re an individual or a business, open source cloud storage software is a great way to keep your files secure and easily accessible. So don’t be afraid to explore your options and find the perfect open source cloud storage software for you!

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Making The Case For Open Source Software

As budgets contract, it is becoming more and more important for schools to consider alternatives to expensive proprietary software. Open source software can provide a viable alternative to traditional software at a fraction of the cost. It is available for free, and is as stable as traditional commercial software (provided schools choose mature software packages). Furthermore, most open source software packages have large communities of developers and users who work towards the common goal of improving the software. This collaborative environment mirrors the style of work educators often seek to create in the classroom.

Open Source vs. Web 2.0

In the last several years educators have begun adopting Web 2.0 sites as alternatives to traditional installed software. The propagation of Web 2.0 sites has provided options not previously available for schools, however there are important distinctions that need to be drawn between Web 2.0 and open source to avoid conflating the terms. First, Web 2.0 sites are not open source. That is to say, the end user has no ability to view, edit, or change the source code of the application. The only permission typically given to the user of a given Web 2.0 site is use of the site. Open source software, on the other hand, affords you the ability to download the source code (the building blocks) of the software.

Web 2.0 sites are hosted on the creating company’s servers, meaning use of the site is dependant on sufficient bandwidth and the site’s servers must be running at a high rate of speed. However, the costs of running Web 2.0 sites can lead to sites shutting down or going to a pay model, leading to frustrated users. Open source software cannot move to a pay model due to inherent restrictions in open source licensing. With open source software, there is no fear that a favorite package will one day cost money. For example, I personally know of many educators who used chúng tôi as a podcast-hosting service. It worked well and was free, until Garageband (the parent company) decided to shut it down. This left many educators searching for a replacement tool.

Open Source Alternatives to Traditional Software

One of my favorite ways to find open source software that is an alternative to traditional software is using chúng tôi This site will offer free and open source substitutes to traditional software. For example, if a school wanted to find an open source alternative to Adobe’s Photoshop software, a visit to chúng tôi reveals an open source package called Gimpshop. This is just one example of many possible alternatives to traditional commercial software.

One way open source software can save schools money is by replacing Microsoft Office. Schools often spend large amounts of money on Microsoft licenses, propagating the dependence on commercial, proprietary software. One alternative to Microsoft Office is LibreOffice. LibreOffice is a free and open source software package that looks and feels much like Microsoft Office and can interact with Office documents.

In my classroom, we often use LibreOffice in place of Microsoft Office because our district has yet to upgrade past the 2003 version of Microsoft Office. LibreOffice gives us newer features and compatibility we did not have with Office 2003. We also use Audacity to record audio. We use Audacity to record podcasts, we create “radio commercials” as projects, and learn to edit audio. Without this free tool, we would have had to invest in a commercial software package for audio editing. This decision has saved us a significant amount.

The other open source software package we use frequently is called iTalc. iTalc is similar to SMART Sync (formerly called SynronEyes) and NetSupport. iTalc allows me to see student screens to provide remote support, demonstrations, and supervision while students are working on their computers. As in the other cases, the use of this software has saved us a significant amount of money.

Practical Advice for Implementing Open Source Software

A proper implementation plan can make the difference between users who thank you and users who get frustrated. There are several ways to ease the transition to an open source software package, especially when it is replacing a traditional commercial package. Here are some tips for planning your transition:

1. Involve key stakeholders. If you educate users ahead of time and prepare them, the transition will be easier. Help your users see the need, help them see the cost savings, and show them that the differences in the software are minimal.

2. Start with early adopters. Each district has an easily identifiable group of users who would be willing to try this out and report possible issues. These same users will become your “go to” folks when the switch goes live.

3. Create short how-to videos and/or screencasts addressing common transition issues. The time it takes to create these will save you help desk requests in the future.

4. Roll out the change over time. Consider running both packages side by side for a year so that users have the chance to try it out.

Open source software can save your school/district/community money while still providing the features users require. In today’s budget crisis, consider how using open source software can replace some of your commercial software.

How Open Source Python Drives The Openstack Cloud

There are a lot of different programming languages in use today. When it comes to the cloud, thanks in part to the strong position of OpenStack, the open source Python language has emerged as being one of the most important. OpenStack is written in Python and is in used by many leading IT vendors including IBM, HP, Dell and Cisco.

But how and why did Python become the language of choice for OpenStack?

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To answer that question, Datamation sat down in a video interview with Joshua McKenty, co-founder and CTO of Piston Cloud and one of the key figures at NASA in the original Nebula cloud compute project.

McKenty wrote a study for NASA examining what language it should adopt for web applications in general.

“At the time, NASA had three thousand different web apps, written in 18 different languages and frameworks, just from a security standpoint it was a nightmare to maintain,” McKenty said. “So I prepared a trade study and did a quantitative and qualitative analysis of six languages and nine frameworks and came up with using Django and Python as the things that were most appropriate for NASA.”

Django is a popular open source Python web framework. McKenty noted that the study wasn’t about identifying Python as the best language in general. The analysis took into account the regional availability of resources, compatibility with NASA partners, security as well as personnel expertise.

In building its cloud compute platform, NASA also made the decision to use the most stable version of Python, which at the time was Python 2.6. The Python 2.6 release was announced back in October of 2008.

During the same timeframe, Rackspace had come to the same decision about using Python as the language for its cloud infrastructure technologies. Rackspace’s legacy cloud was built on Ruby. OpenStack came together in July of 2010, when NASA and Rackspace joined their respective cloud projects.

Python 2 to 3

While Python 2.x was the most stable version of Python in 2008, in 2013 the Python community has moved on with the Python 3.x branch as its core focus. Moving from Python 2.x to Python 3.x for OpenStack is a non-trivial task.

In addition to being on the OpenStack Foundation Board, McKenty is also a member of the Python Software Foundation, as are a number of his fellow OpenStack board members.

“We have insight into where the Python community is trying to go in the transition to Python 3.x and yet we’re keenly aware of the challenges of moving the OpenStack codebase in that direction,” McKenty said.

OpenStack has over 1.25 million lines of code, according to McKenty. Transforming existing code to Python 3.x will be a tricky exercise. Moving to Python 3.x is something that will take time, which isn’t always possible when project are racing forward with new feature releases.

In McKenty’s opinion, new projects should be written in Python 3. When it comes to existing project he is a bit cautious.

“The work to port existing projects to Python 3 should be undertaken,” McKenty said. “But I think it should be timed to happen at the point at which each of the projects is mature enough that the majority of the community can focus on the effort and it’s not in conflict with on-going development.”

Watch the video interview with Joshua McKenty below:

Sean Michael Kerner is a senior editor at Datamation and chúng tôi Follow him on Twitter @TechJournalist.

Apache Cloudstack 4.1 Autoscales The Open Source Cloud

The open source CloudStack project is out this week with its first major release since becoming a top level Apache Software Foundation project. The new release provides new tools that enable more scalable cloud deployments.

The CloudStack 4.1 release is the first since the project’s graduation from the Apache incubator in March of this year. The first CloudStack release as an Apache incubator project came in November 2012 with the 4.0 release. The Apache CloudStack 4.0 release was built on the chúng tôi technology that Citrix had acquired in July of 2010.

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Joe Brockmeier, PMC Member Apache CloudStack, explained to Datamation that CloudStack’s release cycle is a time-based approach, as opposed to being strictly feature driven.

Among the new features in the CloudStack 4.1 release is Region Support, which is similar to a capability currently offered by Amazon AWS.

“This is about making CloudStack more flexible for people that are running geographically distributed clouds,” Brockmeier said.

Another key feature that gets a boost is Auto Scaling. According to CloudStack’s documentation, “Auto Scaling allows you to scale up or scale down back-end services or application virtual machines(guest VMs) based on various conditions you define and thereby ensure optimum use of virtual resources.”

The Auto Scaling feature in CloudStack 4.1 will work with Citrix’s NetScaler load balancer. Brockmeier stressed that the technology is not specific to Citrix, as the Apache project is always trying to be open and inclusive. He expects that over time, other load balancing solutions from mulitple vendors will be plugging into the feature as well via an open interface.

Security gets a boost in CloudStack 4.1 with egress firewall rules for guest networks.

“Basically we’re talking about setting up firewalls for any guest traffic coming from virtual machines that is going out to the public network,” Brockmeier said. “That’s where you are thinking about what you want to allow out of virtual machines instances as opposed to what traffic do you want to allow to reach them.”

From an access control perspective, Brockmeier noted that today CloudStack has three core classes of users. There is the root domain, which has control of the entire cloud, then there are sub-domains and domain users. Going a step further, CloudStack also provides Single-Sign-On capabilities with LDAP and ActiveDirectory. Moving forward, additional options for more granular Role Based Access Control are likely to land in CloudStack.

With the CloudStack 4.1 release now generally available, the focus of attention will turn to development of CloudStack 4.2.

While it is still early in the process, a number of features may be included in the next release of CloudStack, including support for Windows 8 and Windows Server 2012. The egress rules for firewall will be supported on the Juniper SRX security appliance and IP address reservation capabilties are also expected to be part of CloudStack 4.2.

The current plan is for the CloudStack 4.2 release to become generally available in the August, September timeframe.

Sean Michael Kerner is a senior editor at Datamation and chúng tôi Follow him on Twitter @TechJournalist.

A Brief Introduction To � Makefiles’ In Open Source Software Development

As an open-source developer, you might have come across term “Makefile” while exploring different projects. But what exactly is a Makefile, and how does it work? In this article, we will provide a brief introduction to Makefiles, covering what they are, why they are important, and how to create one.

What is a Makefile?

In simple terms, a Makefile is a script that automates build process for a software project. It contains a list of instructions that specify how to compile, link, and test code. Makefiles are used to build complex projects that have multiple source files, dependencies, and targets.

Makefiles were first introduced in early 1970s as part of Unix operating system. They were designed to help programmers automate process of building software, which was a time-consuming and error-prone task. Since then, Makefiles have become an essential tool in world of software development, especially in open-source community.

Why are Makefiles important?

Makefiles provide several benefits to developers. Firstly, they automate build process, which saves time and reduces errors. Instead of manually compiling and linking every source file, developers can simply run Makefile, which will perform all necessary steps in correct order.

Secondly, Makefiles make it easier to manage complex projects with multiple dependencies. For example, if you have a project with several source files that depend on external libraries, you can specify these dependencies in Makefile. When you run Makefile, it will automatically check if dependencies are up-to-date and rebuild them if necessary.

Finally, Makefiles help ensure that code is built consistently across different platforms and environments. By specifying build process in a Makefile, developers can ensure that code is compiled and linked with correct flags and settings, regardless of operating system or compiler being used.

How to create a Makefile?

Creating a Makefile can seem daunting at first, especially if you are new to concept. However, with a little practice, you can quickly become proficient in writing Makefiles. In this section, we will provide a step-by-step guide on how to create a basic Makefile.

Step 1: Define targets

The first step in creating a Makefile is to define targets that you want to build. A target is a file that you want to create or update, such as an executable or a library. To define a target, you use following syntax −

target: dependencies command

Here, target is name of file that you want to create, dependencies are files that target depends on, and command is shell command that should be executed to create target. For example, if you want to create an executable called myprogram from source file main.c, you would define following target −

myprogram: main.c gcc -o myprogram main.c Step 2: Define dependencies

The next step is to define dependencies for each target. Dependencies are files that target depends on, and they can be other targets or source files. To define a dependency, you simply list file or target name after colon. For example, if your executable depends on a header file called utils.h, you would define following target −

myprogram: main.c utils.h gcc -o myprogram main.c Step 3: Define build rules

The final step is to define build rules for each target. Build rules are shell commands that should be executed to create target. To define a build rule, you simply list shell command after the dependencies. In our example, we use gcc compiler to compile main.c and link it to create myprogram executable. Our Makefile now looks like this −

myprogram: main.c utils.h gcc -o myprogram main.c

Once you have defined your targets, dependencies, and build rules, you can save Makefile to a file called Makefile. To build your project, simply open a terminal in directory containing Makefile and run make command. This will read Makefile and execute necessary commands to build targets.

Makefiles are not only limited to building software projects but can also be used for other tasks such as cleaning up temporary files, testing, and deployment.

For example, you can define a target in your Makefile to clean up temporary files generated during build process. Here’s an example of a target that removes all .o files in project directory −

clean: rm -f *.o

To run this target, you simply need to run make clean command in project directory. This will execute rm command and remove all .o files.

Makefiles can also be used for testing your code. You can define a target that runs your unit tests and reports results. Here’s an example of a target that runs a Python test suite −

test: python -m unittest discover -s tests -p 'test_*.py'

To run this target, you simply need to run make test command in project directory. This will execute python command and run all test cases in tests directory.

deploy: tar czf chúng tôi src/ rsync chúng tôi user@server:/tmp

To run this target, you simply need to run make deploy command in project directory. This will execute tar command to create a chúng tôi file containing source code and README file. Then, it will upload file to remote server using rsync.

In summary, Makefiles are a powerful tool for automating tasks in software development. They can be used to build, test, clean, and deploy your code, saving you time and reducing errors. By mastering art of Makefile creation, you can become a more productive and efficient developer.


In conclusion, Makefiles are an essential tool in open-source software development. They automate build process, manage dependencies, and ensure consistent builds across different platforms and environments. By following steps outlined in this article, you can create your own Makefiles and improve your productivity as a developer.

Open Source Ecm In A Windows World

Informa, a technical publishing company with some 7,000 employees, straddles the worlds of Linux and Windows.

The company uses Linux in all its applications that interface with customers. The London-based Informa has very active Linux development teams in its Dutch, German and UK offices. These developers create software for uses ranging from content distribution to marketing.

“They’re all Web apps that deliver something to the broad public,” says Bob Hecht, the company’s VP of content strategy.

The Windows-centric side of Informa is its internal network, which supports its production and management functions. Although the company has open source developers based in Florida and New York, “We tend to, for expediency, write to the Windows platforms, because our infrastructure is all Windows boxes,” Hecht tells Datamation.

Despite the company’s clear dividing line – Linux for customer apps, Windows for its internal network – Hecht decided to take a major step: He introduced an open source element into Informa’s Windows-only internal network.

Surprisingly, the open source tool he introduced was an enterprise content management (ECM) application. In most companies that’s a critical app, but for Informa – whose entire business is content distribution – its ECM program is a defining element of the network.

Why did Hecht want Informa to take such a major step? Cost was the key consideration. Additionally, “I’m a huge Linux fan and supporter, and what has been happening in open source is just an incredible move.”

A New Tool

The open source ECM tool Informa chose is Alfresco Enterprise Network, developed by Alfresco. Launched in the fall of 2005, the software is not quite yet a year old. In its short life, the ECM tool has been adopted by companies like Boise Cascade and Knight Ridder Digital. The application is designed to run in the Linux, Mac, Unix or Windows environments.

One of Informa’s goals in adopting Alfresco was to allows employees to use the editor of their choice to participate in any stage of a document’s creation, from authoring to reviewing, approval to distribution. The company wanted support for EXL-FO (Extensible Stylesheet Language Formatting Objects) and Web services standards. It wanted its content management system to be open source so that it could incorporate third party tools without being limited to a proprietary software model.

Alfresco enables a network manager to apply an array of content management rules to virtual folders. For instance, “You say, ‘anything that goes into this folder, do this with it,’” Hecht explains. So any file can be automatically translated into the correct file format, locked, or versioned. The software also handles an array of security rules. It uses the Lucene Text Search Engine.

Alfresco employs CIFS (Common Internet File System), a protocol for allowing users with different platforms to share files. “It uses a CIFS mapping tool to make the Alfresco content repository look like a Windows folder,” he says. So users navigate within the comfortable, well-known Windows environment.

Because Alfresco supports the JSR-168 portlet standard, users can work in their native portal when necessary. The application employs a configurable Aspect-Oriented system where rules are defined to prompt actions.

The Cost Factor

Some users might expect a relatively new open source app running in a Windows environment to create network snafus. On the subject of Alfresco’s stability on a Windows network, Hecht says it’s hard for him to say, chiefly because he’s never run the app on top of Linux. Not that Alfresco isn’t stable, he explains, but “The only thing I can say with confidence is, I’d feel that it’d be more stable under Linux.”

Actually, there are some Alfresco tools that work better in a pure Windows environment, he says.

The Alfresco enterprise-level product is priced at three tiers: silver, gold and platinum, or $10,000, $15,000, or $20,000 per CPU. (Alfresco is also available as a free, unsupported download.) The software doesn’t need to be implemented onto all a company’s CPUs, Afresco sales director Jason Hardin tells Datamation. “Let’s say they have 200 users, and two CPUs with back-up would be just fine.”

Hecht, for his part, says Informa is moving at a “very cautious” pace with its new ECM tool, but that “I’m viewing Alfresco as a long-term solution for my company.”

“I’m putting in small systems, because the product is not even a year old yet,” he says. “There’s a tremendous amount of functionality that’s in the technical road map for this product and almost all of it is important for a mature enterprise content management solution.”

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