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Personal Cloud Software Pain Points

For the last few weeks, I’ve been evaluating using ownCloud for building my own personal cloud. The install process is more time consuming than it is difficult. Now that I’ve got my server up and running well, I’ve been putting it through the paces more. I’d be lying if I said that I wasn’t hitting a bit of resistance.

I did have second thoughts early on that maybe I should’ve gone with Nextcloud. Before panicking, I decided to read up more on Nextcloud. The issues that were extant in those reviews of Nextcloud’s software were more or less the same deal as ownCloud, but with slightly different caveats.

Same shit, different day.

So I’m good. Absolute worst case, Nextcloud provides a migration path from ownCloud if the need arises. No need to backtrack or start from scratch just yet.

Moving on, I found that the apps for my mobile devices were not $0. I didn’t like that. I was reluctant to pay for any apps to sync mobile devices with my new server. I’ve been burned in the past enough times, and I’m an open software zealot. I then quickly shut up once I found out that I could install all the necessary software for free, if I was willing to spend a couple hours setting up an Android build environment. Spending less than $10 total once for precompiled and continuously updated apps was obviously a fair deal.

The only problem not addressed by the ownCloud app was contact syncing. For the best experience with both contact and calendar syncing, go straight to DAVx5. It’s also free if you want to put in the time. Don’t do that and instead donate a few money units to dev team. It solved the issues that plagued me. Syncing contact information while avoiding unnecessary duplicates is actually a difficult problem to solve, and I’m grateful it’s been solved. I still clearly remember the Palm Pilot days. I ended up with numerous duplicate contacts. I still find those duplicates or other syncing error artifacts from that time in my address book to this very day. That was over a decade and many, many devices ago.

Speaking of, I should probably start clearing out my contacts. There are people in there who I’ve not talked to in many years, and there’s quite a few who have passed away. To those who I no longer talk to, I have no problem deleting their contact information. To those who are no longer here, I simply can’t delete. I cannot erase any evidence that they were here, now that they’re aren’t any longer.

Anyhoo, thanks to ownCloud, my shared files and contacts are now synced up.